It’s a bugger when you get discredited by your own side. If the murder of the Palestinian teenager does turn out to be a revenge attack by some vigilante maniac, it is a shame for so many reasons.
First because it’s the murder of a young boy. Next because it sabotages the moral high ground that was just about the only hope for the salvation of Israel’s reputation in the eyes of the rest of the world. A small hope, but nevertheless a glimmer.
Not that their reputation is Israel’s top priority. I imagine making the Hamas afraid to repeat the incident is consideration number one.
Already there are differences in the aftermaths of both atrocities.
Number one, the Palestinians are blaming Israel for the murder of the Palestinian boy as fervently as they deny responsibility for the murders of the three Israeli boys.
Number two, crowds of Palestinians are ‘rioting’.
Number three, Israelis are condemning the murder of the Palestinian boy in no uncertain terms, whereas the Palestinians were largely celebrating the murders of the three Israeli boys.
Number four, no Israeli children are holding up a finger in jubilation.
Number five, the motive is still a matter of speculation. (The lad was killed by his family because he was gay?) That looks like clutching at straws, but it’s been posited, maybe out of desperation.
So it’s a kind of own goal that does no-one any good. A tit-for-tat murder neither deters nor exacts revenge.
I suppose, in view of the calls to show restraint / and to refrain from launching a ‘disproportionate’ response, this particular mirror-image response, if that is indeed what it was, was ‘proportionate’; Proportionate in the same way that sending random untargeted missiles towards civilians in Gaza “back at ya” would be.
In other words, lowering your standards, stooping to the level of the enemy, losing the plot.
That’s why they tend not to do it.
This might seem like it’s nothing to do with the BBC, but I think everything related to Israelis and Palestinians has a tangential relevance to the BBC, because their view influences a great many people’s hostility to Israel and unjustified indulgence of Palestinians’ grossly infantile behaviour.