Israel Government Mishandles Traffic Incident

The incident began when an Israel Arab drove to the home of one of his children and either did not realize it was the eve of Yom Kippur or decided to go ahead with his trip. A mob of Israel Jews descended on Tawik Jamal and proceeded to beat him up for what they considered to be a desecration of a holy day. The incident sparked three days and nights of conflict between Israel Arabs and Jews and the end result was violence and anger in an area that had not witnessed such feelings. Mr. Jamal was arrested for “harming religious sensibilities, speeding and reckless endangerment.” MK Ahmed Tibi expressed his anger at the arrest of the motorist and said it represented arresting the victim of a “lynch mob” to protect those who were in the mob.

Ironically, the man who was beaten by the mob had no thought of creating any disturbance and felt sad about what had occurred. “If what I did caused this,(the riots) I am ready to sacrifice my neck.” These are hardly the words of a man bent on interfering with the high holy days. Mr. Jamal had worked with committees to foster friendship between Jews and
Arabs.

There is no excuse for arresting such a man. It represents an example of allowing a lynch mob to attain its goals.

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