April 10, 2003 | Bombing of Palestinian playground

A shadowy Jewish terrorist group claimed a bomb on a Palestinian playground in which 20 children were injured.

Jewish terrorists may not be that well known but they are out there.

PALESTINE — Asking criminals to hold to well accepted rules and codes is probably a waste of time. After all, as it has been said “there is no honour among thieves”. Once people have progressed along that pathway there is not a great incentive to abide by what the rest of us see as normal (and off base when it comes to violence).

Terrorists of course are no different. They seem to have an unnatural interest in spreading fear and violence across a wide swathe of targets, regardless of who may get hurt. Among those who are supposed to not be hit are women and children.

Interestingly, jihadis claim that they are following Islamic laws. They certainly cite the Quran and the hadiths (sayings of the Prophet Muhammad) often enough to demonstrate their devotion to the faith. And while it is true that jihad is a valid Islamic term, the way it is carried out by Islamist terrorists bears little resemblance to what the creed’s founders laid out.

According to classic Islamic law, when an army engages the enemy there are rules (what we call ‘rules of war’). Among those who cannot be attacked are:

  • Priests and other holy people;
  • The aged;
  • Women, and;
  • Children

Clearly not all jihadis are listening. There are countless examples of attacks where all the above are directly singled out for killing. Not only are these heinous crimes but they would be rejected by all other Muslims. Rules are rules after all.

Witnesses said desks and chairs were hurled about by the blast. Pools of blood and glass shards littered the floor. Planting a bomb in a playground. Surely there can be nothing lower than this.

And it is not just Islamist extremists who ignore these injunctions. On this day in 2003 a bomb exploded in a West Bank school playground injuring 20 Palestinian children. The explosion tore through a classroom for 16-year-old boys as they returned from a midday recess. A shadowy Jewish group called Revenge of the Infants claimed responsibility for the attack.

In a statement to reporters, the group said it had planted the bomb in revenge for the murders of Jewish children by Palestinians. In the past, the group had claimed responsibility for terror attacks in which Palestinians were killed on West Bank highways.

Planting a bomb in a playground. Surely there can be nothing lower than this.

By Phil Gurski

Phil Gurski is the President and CEO of Borealis Threat and Risk Consulting Ltd. Phil is a 32-year veteran of CSE and CSIS and the author of six books on terrorism.

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