Will They Let Dagamseh Be?!

By Fahed Khitan

تم نشره في Mon 20 February / Feb 2017. 12:00 AM - آخر تعديل في Tue 21 February / Feb 2017. 12:57 AM
  • Fahed Khitan

The family and relatives of Ahmad Dagamseh, who is in prison for life since 1997 for killing Israeli underage girls, say that his life sentence of 20 years will conclude in three weeks.

He is supposed to be set free on the 12th of March, 2017. And so, they wait.

Authorities too, have repeatedly stated, whenever addressed on Dagamseh’s legal situation, that he will remain in prison for the whole duration of the sentence.

Implicitly, this means that he will be released when comes the time.

Finally, news came in with statements by officials confirming his imminent release.

Ever since the incident in Baqoura, the case of the discharged soldier —Dagamseh— was relentlessly raised, as he was seen as a hero by so many people.

Only two moral questions pillared almost every debate on the incident.

First; as a soldier on sovereign Jordanian territory, is it legal for him to do what he did? Second, how moral is it to kill ‘children’, underage girls; they are not soldiers with the occupation army?

So far, the debate over these two central question was never socially resolved.

The moment it hits them, the validity of these questions that is, proponents of Dagamseh’s act resort to recalling the resume of the Israeli occupation and the countless innocent and unarmed Palestinians they so indifferently slaughtered; children, men, women, and elderly, all the same.

Naturally, the purpose of this rationale would be to reinforce Dagamseh’s heroism in their minds.

Upon his release, the debate will renew. But the public’s opinion on it is already formed, 20 years ago, and it still stands as is.

More so, the public is so disgusted at the idea of peace with the Israelis, whose hostility against Palestinians only makes it worse, that it make it even harder for those to oppose Dagamseh’s action to openly say so; those who see nothing heroic about killing children.

No doubt, it is obvious that he will be received a hero among his own, and that his proponents will seek endlessly to present him as a nationally celebrated symbol of patriotism

Ironically, we still do not know how Dagamseh himself, the man in the centre of all this, sees the rest of his life; will he rejoice the days to come as the symbol his proponents set him out to be? Or will he retire to a natural life away from the circus of patriotic sentiment?

Moreover, the more dangerous question is, I think; will the Israelis let Dagamseh go free without exacting revenge?

Undoubtedly, prejudiced Israelis will denounce his release, even after his time is done.

Delegations of the families and relatives of the ‘victims’ of the Baqoura incident held many stand-ins at the Jordanian Embassy in Tel Aviv to protest Dagamseh’s release.

Similarly, Netanyahu’s fanatical government of bandits and settlers could administer quite the diplomatic scolding for this, and it is not unlikely that Washington does the same. But all that can be addressed diplomatically.

Again, what if Israel decides to take revenge in a scenario similar to the attempt to assassinate Khaled Meshal in Amman some 20 years ago?!

Come to think of it, not much has changed; Netanyahu was then head of Israeli government, and today, he is the prime minister of Israel.

Could Jordan’s decisive response back then have changed the Israeli approach?!

Some say Netanyahu has learnt now that daring such a thing would be foolish.

Others disagree, maintaining that Israel knows no limit to its evil and will continue to pursue its enemies wherever they ago. After all, Israel does have an eventful history of orchestrated assassinations.

This article is an edited translation from the Arabic version, published by AlGhad.