Mental health care, Arab style

Israel's late Prime Minister Golda Meir, of blessed memory, once stated that peace would end the Arab-Israeli war when the Arabs loved their children more than they hated Israelis. Sad proof that peace is not about to break out from Arabs soon is this horror story from the English edition of the Israeli Hebrew daily, Ha'aretz (the Land).

A Palestinian caught trying to infiltrate a settlement Wednesday night claims he was sent by his family members, who had hoped he would be killed by soldiers during the infiltration.

But he was caught by Israeli soldiers before he could do damage so they didn't have to defensively shoot and kill. But why, in addition to proudly claiming a "holy martyr" in the family, did his Arab/Muslim parents deliberately choose this son for this "holy suicide terrorist mission?" Was the son especially brave? Religious? Full of hate towards Israelis? Maybe all of these but the basic answer is even more chilling.

According to the investigation into the incident, the boy was behaving in a strange manner and the soldiers originally thought that he was drunk. Later on in the investigation, it was clarified that he was actually suffering from a mental illness.

The boy told investigators that his family wanted him dead. He said they threatened him at gunpoint, forcing him to walk towards the settlement with the hope that soldiers would think he was trying to infiltrate and would shoot him.

Further investigation confirmed his story; he is mentally ill.

To remove a huge stain on the family honor, to rid the family of a socially embarrassing problem while simultaneously gaining family martyr honor status, the family deliberately forced a vulnerable individual to a hoped for death.

Hmmmm, who has the biggest mental health problem--the son or the family? Or the culture?