The tragedy seems to be a very welcome piece of news for the Jerusalem Post's commentariat. They are especially excited that it's Israeli Arabs who are involved in this crime. A selection of the comments follows:
3 days ago
The girl was taken for attention to the Ramban Medical Center. David Ratner, the director of public affairs and spokesman for the Center, asserted:
This is something more fitting to Afghanistan, Iran, Pakistan. It’s not something people expect here.
Pick any day of any week of any month of the year and the country where the largest amount of acid-attack stories comes from is, far and away, India. The crime is so endemic in the country that an organization exists exclusively devoted to stopping it. So why would Mr. Ratner name three other countries as those to which acid attacks are "more fitting"? Maybe he had some religion in mind?
Mr. Ratner's assessment only adds to the misinformation spread by the mainstream media, which usually carries stories, complete with gruesome pictures, of women splashed with acid in Muslim countries, while largely ignoring the prevalence of the crime in the whole of South and Southeast Asia, as well as several African countries like Nigeria, Zimbabwe and South Africa. I leave it to the reader to do the Googling for themselves.
Perhaps more to the point, you're not likely to learn from Western media about acid attacks among Israeli Jews -- but they exist. On 5 June 2008, Ynet reported:
A 14-year-old girl from Beitar Illite was taken to the Hadassah Ein Kerem Hospital in Jerusalem after an unknown person spilled acid on her face, legs and stomach, causing light burn wounds. The act has been attributed to a representative of the so-called 'modesty guard' in this town where religious and secular residents are increasingly at bitter odds.
The story describes how the attackers mistook the girl for her sister, who had been warned by the "modesty patrol" not to wear "immodest" clothing. Unlike in the case of the Nazareth attack, which had nothing to do with religion and everything to do with lust, the Betar Ilit attack was perpetrated because of the criminals' Jewish belief that women should go around modestly dressed. It's true that not all Jews think alike, but it is also true that the Jews who don't haven't made a credible effort to stop the fanatics within their religion. Evil prevails where good people do nothing.
Curiously enough, I haven't seen any follow-up stories about the Betar Ilit girl, or any description of how she was left after the attack, or, of course, any pictures. While conspiracy theories are not my weakness, one can't help but notice a failure on the media's part to adequately investigate this Jew-on-Jew acid attack.
By way of another example, a fresh intra-Jewish acid attack was reported only yesterday by Ynet:
Teen pours acid on his sister in Kiryat Ono mall Investigators say attack result of long-standing dispute between the two; sister suffers light facial burns
So that despite Mr. Ratner's inability to fathom an acid attack in Israel, it has happened and it happens, be it for religious reasons or as part of family disputes. It is something to be expected not only from Arabs but also from many other peoples in the Asian and African continents, including Hindus, Cambodians, Christian Nigerians and -- Jews.