Skip To Content
JEWISH. INDEPENDENT. NONPROFIT.
Back to Opinion

After Arafat

In thinking about how to address Yasser Arafat’s departure and its meaning for the Middle East, friends of Israel would do well to follow the lead set by Israeli Prime Minister Sharon in the past week, when he ordered his ministers to maintain a dignified silence despite their dislike for the man. Arafat was an unabashed terrorist whose hands were stained with the blood of thousands, and few Jews will grieve for him. But he was also an iconic figure to the Palestinians, the people with whom Israelis must share their troubled land.

We understand that Arafat’s passage will open up new opportunities for Israel to strengthen its security and strive for new regional relationships. But we also understand that it represents a time of mourning for Israel’s neighbors, and for millions of Arabs and Muslims around the world. Analyzing the crimes past and the opportunities ahead is the right thing to do right now. Celebrating is not.

A message from our editor-in-chief Jodi Rudoren

We're building on 127 years of independent journalism to help you develop deeper connections to what it means to be Jewish today.

With so much at stake for the Jewish people right now — war, rising antisemitism, a high-stakes U.S. presidential election — American Jews depend on the Forward's perspective, integrity and courage.

—  Jodi Rudoren, Editor-in-Chief 

Join our mission to tell the Jewish story fully and fairly.

Republish This Story

Please read before republishing

We’re happy to make this story available to republish for free, unless it originated with JTA, Haaretz or another publication (as indicated on the article) and as long as you follow our guidelines. You must credit the Forward, retain our pixel and preserve our canonical link in Google search.  See our full guidelines for more information, and this guide for detail about canonical URLs.

To republish, copy the HTML by clicking on the yellow button to the right; it includes our tracking pixel, all paragraph styles and hyperlinks, the author byline and credit to the Forward. It does not include images; to avoid copyright violations, you must add them manually, following our guidelines. Please email us at [email protected], subject line “republish,” with any questions or to let us know what stories you’re picking up.

We don't support Internet Explorer

Please use Chrome, Safari, Firefox, or Edge to view this site.