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Sunday, June 15, 2008

Al-Guardian 'understands' RFK assassin Sirhan Sirhan

Al-Guardian has branded Sirhan Sirhan's 1968 murder of US Presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy (pictured in Jerusalem in 1948) a 'political act.' It therefore claims that we must 'understand the context' of that act, and by implication justifies it along with every other act of Arab terrorism against the United States, Israel and the West that has taken place since.
Far from being a "maniacally absurd" crime, as Newsweek concluded, the Robert Kennedy assassination was in fact an eminently political act. It was the first "blowback" attack the United States suffered as a result of its Middle East policies.

Sirhan was the first in a line of Arab terrorists that would later produce the bombers of the US Marine barracks in Beirut, American embassies in East Africa, the USS Cole and the World Trade Center in New York.

"I can explain!" Sirhan cried out as he was arrested. "I did it for my country!" At the time, that seemed to be no more than the raving of what one American newspaper called "a mad man". Now that the word understands much more about the upheaval that produced Sirhan, it sounds quite different.

Sirhan was not simply a "Jordanian citizen", as he was called at the time. He was an embittered Palestinian who had been born in 1944 to a Christian family in Jerusalem. During the war that broke out when he was four years old, Jewish insurgents seized his house, and his family was forced to flee. He was nearly killed in an Irgun bombing at the Damascus Gate, and witnessed other violent attacks that deeply traumatised him.

As a young refugee, Sirhan attended a school where teachers exhorted students to struggle for Palestinian rights. Later his family moved to California, and he was there when Israel seized East Jerusalem and other Arab territories in the Six-Day War of 1967. He told at a friend that he believed Fatah was justified in using terror to oppose Israeli rule.

During the 1968 presidential campaign, Sirhan came to identify Robert Kennedy, who he had originally supported, as a friend of Israel. Three weeks before committing his crime, he watched a documentary about Kennedy's involvement with Israel on CBS television. Soon afterward he heard a radio tape of Kennedy telling an audience at a Los Angeles synagogue that he would maintain "clear and compelling" support for Israel. After hearing it, a relative later testified, Sirhan ran from the room with "his hands on his ears, and almost weeping".

Sirhan timed his attack on Kennedy to coincide with the first anniversary of the opening of the Six-Day War. At his trial, he sought several times to place his crime in the Palestinian context. "When you move a whole country, a whole people, bodily from their own homes, from their land, from their business," he said, "that is completely wrong … . That burned the hell out of me." Few Americans had any idea what he was talking about.
But here's the line that takes the cake.
Foreign interventions and entanglements often produce unpredictable, even unimaginable long-term consequences. The murder of Robert Kennedy is one example. If Israel had never come into existence, or if the United States had not supported it, or if Kennedy had not reaffirmed that support, Sirhan would probably never have pulled his trigger.
If only, huh? Has anyone checked yet whether John Wilkes Booth was motivated by Abraham Lincoln's support for the creation of a Jewish state in Ottoman Palestine? Or why Mark Twain wasn't murdered by 'Palestinian' terrorists? And while Sirhan was apparently a Christian, I suppose that all those West-hating Muslims who have far broader goals than the 'Palestinians' were also acting on the 'Palestinians' behalf when they blew up the USS Cole, the American embassies in Africa, the World Trade Center and the Pentagon are really only motivated by the 'Palestinians' too? Give me a break!

Too bad California did away with the death penalty before they executed Sirhan. Maybe if they hadn't, there wouldn't be so many people now trying to 'understand' him and to place his murderous act 'in context.'


At 9:20 AM, Blogger NormanF said...

To the Left, Robert F Kennedy deserved what he got because he supported Israel. The rot of moral equivalence has impacted the Left to such an extent it can no longer see any difference between good and evil. Everything is more or less the same. No wonder the West is in a state of moral crisis today.

At 1:54 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I could understand where someone is coming from if someone would blow up the Guardian's offices, with all of their staff in attendence.

What's not to understand?!

I'm just sayin'.


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