If we are to heal this nation, the killing of Muhammed Abu Khdeir must rid us of the illusion that we enjoy a distinctive moral superiority over our neighbors, writes TImes of Israel.
is this more shattering for Israel than the assassination of Yitzhak Rabin, when an arrogant psychopath decided, in a context that provided him with no little encouragement, that God required him to murder Israel’s prime minister in order to prevent the relinquishing of divinely promised land to the loathed Palestinians?
Is this more devastating than the mass murder carried out by Baruch Goldstein, the doctor who gunned down 29 Palestinians at prayer in Hebron’s Cave of the Patriarchs?
Terrible, unthinkable crimes, those — killings that stained us all; that changed our history in this land; that pushed our fragile democracy to the brink of the abyss; that resonate, still, two decades later.
And yet, the murder of 16-year-old Jerusalemite Muhammad Abu Khdeir, allegedly by a gang of Jewish extremists, shames us and stains us no less, and raises fresh and appalling questions about our country and its course.
If we are to heal this nation, last Wednesday’s killing must rid us, once and for all, of the complacent illusion that we enjoy a distinctive moral superiority over our neighbors. If that was ever the case, it cannot be claimed by a people that can produce a gang of thugs capable of grabbing a random teenager and burning him to death for the “crime” of being an accessible Arab kid on the day after three Jewish terror victims were laid to rest. We Israelis knew we had nothing in common with those Hamas killers who so callously ended the lives of three innocent Israeli teenagers; we were wrong.