Summary and Analysis

VOP has been taking an uncharacteristically low-key tone regarding Israeli casualties in the last few days.

It is not only that Israeli civilian deaths and casualties, even in major attacks such as the Hadera car bombing, are reported tersely-if at all- even successful attacks on Israeli soldiers and officers are reported laconically.

Even as Israeli newspapers are reporting that IDF commanders are noting the “operational achievements” and “improvements in sniping” by Palestinian soldiers, the Voice of Palestine is not citing these matters.

Normally, VOP would highlight an Israeli military setback or disaster — especially at the hands of Palestinians. But it appears that the Palestinian Authority’s radio outlet is pursuing a sophisticated media strategy placing the Palestinians in the underdog role. This expresses itself in highlighting Palestinian deaths and casualties while remaining unusually modest regarding the PA’s own military initiatives and successes.

VOP continues to devote the lead stories of its news summaries and round-ups to descriptions of reported Israeli artillery barrages and missile attacks on innocent civilian neighborhoods.

Newscaster Samir Intehr introduced an item about the death of a child martyr: “The martyr deaths of the children of the Intifada continues, felling innocent children for nothing more than throwing rocks at the Occupier. So it was for the child Karam al-Kurd who was martyred at 200 meters away from the site of a confrontation, by shots that shattered his skull.” The feature item described the 14 year-old Karameh who had gone to throw rocks with his elder brother in Rafah (in Gaza). “The shots clove open the skull of the child who fell into the arms of his brother, covering him with blood on the road. But the occupiers were not satisied with assassinating the child. They prevented a car from carrying him to a hospital in Khan Yunis”. The feature, read in a soft voice by a female reporter (whose name was unclear), went on to describe the parents’ poetic reaction (literally, poetry) to their son’s death, their pride in his joining other martyrs in heaven.

Morning Headlines (7 a.m., 8 a.m., 9 a.m.)

“Masses of our people in Jenin, Nablus and Khan Yunis will accompany four martyrs to their final rest with other Intifada martyrs today (names and ages given in detail); President Arafat calls for renewed efforts to put end to Israeli aggression; President Arafat pushed or halt to Israeli aggression in meeting with Egyptian president Mubarak and contacts with Russian president Vladimir Putin; Minister Abd-Rabbo meeting with UN Secretary General; Minister Abd-Rabbo says American media show understanding for Israeli side, equalizing treatment of the crimes of the victimizer and his victim.”

Arafat Response (to question by VOP Gaza correspondent ‘Adil Za’anun): “We are working on the international level, on the Arab level and on the Islamic level, on the United Nations level and with friends of peace — the Russian Federation and the United States of America- Euorpe and the non-aligned nations, on an economic and diplomatic plane to firm up the efforts of our people, to support our people at every instant, because our people are a people of heroes.

Interview: Cabinet Secretary Ahmad Abdul-Rahman

“Israel continues to pursue a war of aggression and expansion. Israel clings to war Israel wants to build a second Israel in the (West) Bank and the (Gaza) Strip. They are not satisfied with the first Israel that was established in 1948. They want a second Israel, and that’s why they are pushing this battle. We have not seen peace since 1993 (note: Oslo signings), but the Oslo peace is nothing but a counterfeit peace.

We have not seen that peace reinforced by an Israeli withdrawal, and we have not seen that peace implemented with the realization of Palestinian rights. This solution of Judaizing Palestine entirely and of Judaizing Jerusalem and establishing a second Israel in the (West) Bank and Gaza will not stand. That is why for two months-for nearly two months-we have been (fighting) to prevent the realization of this goal.

The Palestinian people will not cease its intifada until Israel withdraws to the June 4 1967 borders without the shadow of a settlement or a settler inside Palestinian territory”.