The terrorist who rammed his BMW into a group of soldiers at a central Jerusalem thoroughfare late Monday night has been identified as Kasem Mugrabi, 19, from Jebl Mukaber in east Jerusalem.Unrequited love has led to many a suicide in the West, and it is tragic that the ideas of Romeo and Juliet are such a part of our culture that lovestruck victims will sometimes kill themselves.
Mugrabi, a resident of the same village as the Mercaz Harav terrorist who killed eight in March, wounded fifteen people before being shot dead by an off-duty IDF officer.
The assailant had no previous security record, police said Tuesday.
According to an initial police investigation, the 19-year-old wanted to marry his cousin, and when she refused his offer, he decided to carry out a terror attack, Jerusalem police spokesman Shmuel Ben-Ruby said.
The Palestinian Arab culture, however, doesn't romanticize suicide - it romanticizes self-destructive mass murder. It is unthinkable to just kill oneself, because that adds shame and dishonor to your family.
Our young, pained Kasem Mugrabi seems to have been jilted and he responded with the Palestinian Arab concept of ultimate self-sacrifice - to kill oneself while trying to murder as many of the enemy as possible. A shameful act is thus elevated to an act of martyrdom, and the loss of a love on Earth is replaced by the concept of unlimited sex in Paradise.
Rather than hoping that the object of his desires would cry for him and regret her rejection, the terrorist can hope that she will be jealous that she didn't fall for such an honorable man - the same type of man who Palestinian Arab culture considers heroes.
This is the idea of romance in Palestinian Arab culture - a society where mass murder is celebrated so routinely that it becomes an attractive alternative for shamed people to become heroes.