Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Terror on the Ground and on the Internet

From the New York Times today there is a report of a new poll shows that an overwhelming majority of Palestinians support the attack this month on a Jewish seminary in Jerusalem that killed eight young men, most of them teenagers, an indication of the alarming level of Israeli-Palestinian tension in recent weeks. Full report at

The survey also shows unprecedented support for the shooting of rockets on Israeli towns from the Gaza Strip and for the end of the peace negotiations between Palestinian and Israeli leaders.

The pollster, Khalil Shikaki, said he was shocked because the survey, taken last week, showed greater support for violence than any other he had conducted over the past 15 years in the Palestinian areas. Never before, he said, had a majority favored an end to negotiations or the shooting of rockets at Israel.

“There is real reason to be concerned,” Mr. Shikaki said in an interview at his West Bank office. His Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research, which conducts a survey every three months, is widely viewed as among the few independent and reliable gauges of Palestinian public opinion. According to the poll, of 1,270 Palestinians in face-to-face interviews, 84 percent supported the March 6 attack on the Mercaz Harav yeshiva.

This is the hard fact of life while our leaders are talking “peace”.

In addition to the terror warfare on the ground, there is an exponential increase in terrorism on the internet. A friend of mine recently published a book “Fighting Terror Online” in which he discusses the use of advanced technological methods in use by the global terror organizations. This is in turn creating a tension between our civil rights for freedom of speech and security needs.

He was interviewed recently on the local Academic channel and this can be seen at

He summarises his book finally by saying that “Although the provisions of the law have changed rapidly since September 11th ……the evolution of technology, breakthroughs in scientific research and the relentless determination to fight the evil of terror must lead us, our children and their children to find the solutions necessary to protect the individual and society from harm, and at the same balance security and civil liberties.”

He concludes “it is a challenge that we must win and a fight that we must win”
(“Fighting Terror Online”, by Martin Charles Golombik, published by Springer)

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