Jewish World Review May 25, 2004 / 5 Sivan 5764

Dan Abrams

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Consumer Reports

Madonna lets terrorists win | The "London Sun" is reporting that Madonna canceled three concerts in Israel after an unnamed Palestinian terror group threatened to kill her and her children. It's ironic that when she announced the concerts almost two months ago, one article pointed out that Madonna was teaching a lesson in how not to give in to "terrorism's greatest weapon — fear."

In retrospect, it probably would have been better if she hadn't agreed to do the concerts at all, because now the terrorists will feel emboldened. For them, fear can be an even more powerful tool than death itself. Changing policy or even changing a star like Madonna's schedule can be the fuel that helps them thrive. At first, "The Sun" reported that she was prepared to go ahead anyway with extra security, but after it became clear that the terrorists knew details about her security staff, she decided it just wasn't worth it.

It's hard to blame her. Apparently the letters named her two children and said they would be killed if she performed in Israel. Having someone threaten to kill your kids would lead almost all of us to significantly alter our lives and do whatever was necessary to avoid the threat. But it serves as a reminder that as a nation, we must ensure we don't capitulate in the wake of threats, that we do not follow the lead of the Spanish who voted in a new government as a result of the bombings there, a government that had promised to remove troops from Iraq just as the terrorist had demanded.

It's clear that the only thing that scares the terrorists is the fear of irrelevance — that they will change nothing, that their efforts will be thwarted. We need to scare them back.

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JWR contributor Dan Abrams anchors “The Abrams Report,” Monday through Friday from 9-10 p.m. ET on MSNBC TV. He also covers legal stories for “NBC Nightly News with Tom Brokaw,” “Today” and “Dateline NBC.” To visit his website, click here. Comment by clicking here.



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