In 1995 near Tel Aviv, another bus, this time it was the #20 line that runs through Ramat Gan exploded when another suicide bomber boarded with the intention of murder and mayhem. Six people were murdered in that attack.
These two attacks, and many others, had a common thread, Abad al Majid Dudin. Long after the bus numbers fade from memory, the Israel army continues to hunt these murderers down. Slowly, they are captured and put on trial, unless the resist arrest and cannot be captured alive. Then, perhaps justice comes more swiftly, though not as planned.
Last week, special forces entered the Arab village of Dura and surrounded the location where Abad al Majid Dudin was hiding. They called for him to surrender; told him he was surrounded. Justice had arrived. Not surprisingly, Dudin decided not to surrender and a gun battle ensued. Abad al Majid Dudin, along with a supply of explosives that he had hidden nearby, was eliminated.
It is unlikely that his death, and more importantly, the murderous actions he initiated during his life, will make international news. But I have no doubt that his death will be added to the statistics used by human rights organizations to manipulate world opinion. A Palestinian died last week at the hands of the Israeli army. That is all they will tally, these number crunchers with an agenda. The eleven murdered people belong to 1995 and no connection will be made to this man's death. No sense of justice achieved, no dots to connect the crime with the punishment or the fact that he was given an opportunity to surrender and face trial.
The human rights tally process reminded me of a Garth Brooks song I love. The song speaks of two parents - a mother and a father. The mother died and Brooks sings about the dates on her grave stone. "What matters is the dash in between," he sings - the dash represents all the years she lived from birth to death. It is all, we could assume, in the details. What matters is the life you make - it is all there in the details, not the numbers of when you died, but rather how you lived. Perhaps the human rights organizations will have a chart with the year, the city/village and the name of the deceased. Perhaps, it will look like this:
2009 Dura Abad al Majid Dudin *But what will be missing when the human rights organizations make their yearly tally, is the asterisk that explains what Abad al Majid Dudin did. The eleven lives stolen during these two attacks, the hundreds wounded in these and other attacks. What matters is the asterisk that will likely be missing.
* Dudin was the commander of the area military wing of the Hamas terrorist organization in the southern Hebron area. He was responsible for planning the 1995 bus bombings in Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, which resulted in the murder of 11 Israelis and more than 100 wounded, as well as numerous other incidents throughout his terrorist career.
I often think of things to write here and wonder if it belongs here on this blog or on another blog that I keep called, "This is Israel." I decided this belongs here because another thing that foreign leaders and human rights organizations love to point to is that fact that terrorism is down sharply in Israel. We have, with great thanks to God and the army, had only a few suicide attacks in the last year and most if not all of those involved lone Arabs choosing to attack Jews when the opportunity presents itself.
Just last week, an Arab attempted to stab a guard at the entrance to my city. He did so, he explained after he was caught, because he'd had an argument with his family. What Elie is doing now has everything to do with helping to block attacks, find explosives and guns that could be used, and, in general, keep the statistics low.
It is a false peace created by our army's effectiveness, rather than our enemies suddenly deciding to work towards peace. But the asterisk missing from the death of Abad al Majid Dudin is also missing from beside the statistics showing a marked decrease in terrorism. What matters is the asterisk there in between - the one that explains that our soldiers stopped Dudin from initiating further attacks, that our soldiers caught someone attempting to smuggle in explosives or knives.
Yes, as a result of last week's raid and Dudin's death, I fully expect the human rights organizations to add another statistic to their tally of dead. They will write that Abad al Majid Dudin died and won't bother with the asterisk that details how many he murdered. But now, Abad al Majid Dudin stands before the greatest Judge who will, I have no doubt, pass a true and deserving sentence for the murders he planned. And as Dudin stands there and receives his judgement, people are riding on bus line # 26 in Jerusalem and bus line # 20 in Tel Aviv in relative safety tonight. And in that, there is justice.