Sunday, April 02, 2006
Leading UK TV personality: Israelis are far, far better at killing each other than Hamas
This is a very shocking statement, but sadly it is very true. Nick Ross, a leading UK television personality and a former chairman of the National Road Safety Committee of the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents in the UK, believes that Israeli drivers should be compared with Hamas.
Israel has deplorable statistics when it comes to road deaths per motorists in this country. Many more people are killed as a result of road accidents than terrorism or war. Israelis are very concerned over any death due to terrorism and we remain glued to the television screens to find out all we can about the victims, and rightly so. But there is a bigger killer out there we have to stop.
"If you want to get Israeli public attitudes more focused on the priorities of road safety, one has got to recognize that Israelis are far, far better at killing each other than Hamas," Ross told The Jerusalem Post.
"Hamas... is relatively ineffective compared to Israeli drivers," he said, noting that more people die in road accidents than in terrorist attacks.
Ross is the grandson of the country's first justice minister, Pinhas Rosen, and is here this week for a conference organized by road safety organization Metuna.
He has become a national institution on British television through his long-running and award-winning show Crimewatch UK, which appeals to the public for help in solving crimes. In addition, he presented a road-safety program called The Biggest Epidemic of Our Times in the 1980s and a series called So You Think You're a Good Driver! several years ago.
Ross used the word "epidemic" to describe Israel's road fatalities, noting that while traffic deaths in other countries have been halved, the figures in this country have dropped very little in recent years. This, he believes, is because Israel is forced to worry about security at the expense of other issues.
"Israel's security, in a grand sense, is the most pressing issue. But on a day-to-day basis, if you're worried about your kids, the real campaigning issue in Israel ought to be road safety more than any other disease. It is a disease as far as doctors are concerned. As a plague that can be solved, that is the one that ought to be concentrated on," he said.
"It is a paradox, because Israel, out of all the nations on Earth, treasures individual life. What Israel will do to save one life," he exclaimed. "And yet there's this extraordinary psychological blindness to all these lives that are being lost."One problem, he said, is that drivers have become unjustifiably fatalistic about road accidents. "We just assume this will happen," he said. "Nonsense. If accidents are about to happen, how come in the UK, with more traffic going faster for more miles, we've got our fatalities down from 6,500 to 3,400. We've just engineered it down. We decided that's what we were going to do."