Petra Marquardt-Bigman, whom I worked with to make the video posted earlier about Ben Ehrenreich and the Tamimi clan, published an article in Tablet on the same topic.
It is important to understand that the Tamimis see their “struggle” not just as a fight against Israel’s occupation of the West Bank, but against Israel’s existence as a Jewish state in any borders. Because one might expect that open support for terror and the ambition to physically eliminate a UN member state are the kinds of opinions that remain beyond the pale for writers who hope to receive plaudits from The New York Times and the Economist, it is fair to assume that Ehrenreich must have been bamboozled by his subjects or is unable to read basic Arabic—neither one of which reflects particularly well on the likelihood of him having achieved a more advanced form of journalistic truth.
It is obviously also possible that Ehrenreich knew about the Tamimis’ political leanings. Not unlike the Tamimis, Ehrenreich has long believed that “Zionism is the problem,” as he explained in a 2009 op-ed in the Los Angeles Times. When it comes to the methods the Tamimis support in order to solve this “problem,” it is certainly disingenuous to ask—as Ehrenreich does—if there is “no form of Palestinian resistance so innocuous that it wouldn’t be condemned.” There is absolutely nothing “innocuous” about the Tamimis’ ardent support for terror and their equally ardent Jew-hatred. (Ehrenreich declined to comment for this article.)
Despite the headline that emphasized the "bamboozled" part, the answer is actually quite clear (Tablet created the "bamboozled" headline, not the author, and Tablet edited the article apparently to emphasize this idea.)
Ehrenreich knows exactly how much the Tamimi family supports terror attacks - and he purposefully tries to fudge that information by making it appear that other relatives or residents of Nabi Saleh are the ones that support terror, not his saintly friends.
In 2013, writing for the New York Times on the article that in many ways became this book, Ehrenreich notes:
In 1993, Bassem told me, his cousin Said Tamimi killed a settler near Ramallah. Eight years later, another villager, Ahlam Tamimi escorted a bomber to a Sbarro pizzeria in Jerusalem. Fifteen people were killed, eight of them minors. Ahlam, who now lives in exile in Jordan, and Said, who is in prison in Israel, remain much-loved in Nabi Saleh. Though everyone I spoke with in the village appeared keenly aware of the corrosive effects of violence — “This will kill the children,” Manal said, “to think about hatred and revenge” — they resented being asked to forswear bloodshed when it was so routinely visited upon them.Ehrenreich waters this down much further in his new book.
In one early bombing in August 2001, a woman named Ahlam Tamimi, a twenty-year-old journalism student from Nabi Saleh, escorted a young man named Izz al-Din al-Masri to a crowded Sbarro pizzeria in downtown Jerusalem. Shortly after she left him there, he detonated an explosive, wounding 130 people and killing himself and 15 others. Eight of the dead were children. ...Her relatives in Nabi Saleh still speak of her with great affection.Yet Ehrenreich doesn't draw the line between Ahlam Tamimi and the relatives that he relied on to write this book that showed him such wonderful hospitality in Nabi Saleh. It isn't only Ahlam's immediate relatives who love her bombing kids in a pizza shop, it is the entire community including the main subjects for the book. Ehrenreich's mission to canonize Bassem and Nariman and Bilal and Manal Tamimi would be jeopardized by noting that they cheer the murder of dozens of Jews, including 13-year old Hallel Yaffe Ariel, as the video shows.
Here is how Ehrenreich looks at the Tamimis, explicit supporters of murder and terrorism who he considers generous, kind and wise.
The Tamimis aren't the subjects of the book - they are co-conspirators to write a piece of anti-Israel propaganda by pretending to be something that their social media posts prove they clearly are not.
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