One can easily understand the Palestinian and the Arab responses to the findings of the official Commission of Inquiry established by the Israeli government to investigate the circumstances surrounding Muhammad al-Durrah’s death. Still, these findings are starting to assume a prominent position in the Palestinian narrative, and swiping the flag that once fluttered at the top of that flagpole. That isn’t easy to do. My problem isn’t with the Arab response, but with the Israeli response, and by that I don’t mean the Israeli Arabs, who have long considered themselves to be Palestinians, intrinsically linked to the Palestinian experience. My problem is with the Israeli response among Israeli Jews, Zionists, who lie within the Israeli mainstream and are well acquainted with the culture of fantasies and lies that surround us. My problem is with those who are intimately aware of the hypocritical business of delegitimization, which has thrived at our expense for an entire era.
Shlomi Eldar is one of the most prominent journalists to cover the Palestinian issue for the Israeli media, but the article he published on this site yesterday [May 20], is an excellent example of the problems inherent in the Israeli response. Why are we suddenly bringing up al-Durrah, he wondered. After all, it happened 13 years ago. After all, the Agranat 1973 Commission was created immediately after the Yom Kippur War, and the Kahan Commission was established right after the first Lebanon War 1982. What took us so long to create this Commission of Inquiry, and more generally, who does it actually benefit? After all, it’s too late to change the Palestinian narrative.