Two people were killed and one injured in a Palestinian stabbing attack in southern Tel Aviv on Thursday, shortly before three others were killed and at least five others were wounded in a shooting and car ramming attack in the West Bank.
In Tel Aviv, a 36-year-old Palestinian assaulted his victims as they were attending afternoon prayer services, Haaretz reported. The attacker, who received a permit to enter Israel a month ago, stabbed two people fatally and wounded a third before being overpowered by a passerby and arrested by a traffic cop. He told police that he wanted to “attack and kill Jews.”
A paramedic who arrived at the scene described it as “a difficult sight,” according to The Jerusalem Post. “At the entrance to one of the businesses in the building a 32-year-old man lay unconscious, without a pulse and not breathing, suffering from stab wounds to his upper body. Next to him, a man in his 30s lay with stab wounds to his upper body.”
A third victim, a 50-year-old man who was lightly injured, was found a floor below.
Two hours after the stabbing, Ynet reported of a shooting and car attack in the West Bank, which killed three people and wounded at least five others. Among the dead were an “18-year-old American citizen, a 50-year-old Israeli, and a Palestinian in his forties.” Though the attack was initially believed to be the work of multiple terrorists, a preliminary investigation determined that it was only carried out by one. The man, identified as Mohammed Abdel Basset al-Kharoub, a Palestinian from the West Bank, is currently in policy custody.
Yuval Lasri, the man who initially overpowered and neutralized al-Kharoub during the shooting, said, “I stood in the traffic jam and heard gunfire. The terrorist rammed a car behind me. I got out of my car, pushed his gun away and threw him on the ground. I didn’t shoot at him because I wasn’t sure that he was the terrorist, but then I saw the gun next to him and understood that he was.”
The attacks come a year and a day after terrorists stormed a synagogue in the Jerusalem neighborhood of Har Nof with axes and knives, killing four worshippers and a Druze police officer. A sixth man who was wounded in Har Nof died of his injuries last month. Clashes were reported yesterday during a Palestinian commemoration in honor of the dead terrorists.
Various Israeli security experts and Palestinian activists have attributed the recent wave of terror to incitement coming from all levels of Palestinian society, including government officials. Earlier this month, the United States House of Representatives unanimously passed a resolution condemning incitement by the Palestinian Authority. At the time, the measure’s co-sponsor Ted Deutch (D – Fla.) said, “It is well past time for President Abbas to stand up and condemn all acts of violence, rather than encouraging violence by glorifying terrorists and teaching children to view Israelis as animals.”
Reports by the Middle East Media Research Institute and The New York Times last month also shed light on the violent incitement sweeping Palestinian social media, which ranges from popular hashtags such as “Poison the Knife before You Stab” and “Slaughtering the Jews,” to graphic images and how-to guides encouraging more terror attacks. “One crude cartoon making the rounds on Facebook, including on the official Palestinian TV page before it disappeared late Tuesday, depicts an Israeli soldier as an ape, accompanied by a pig, over a bloodied youth,” The Times wrote. “Another has a close-up of a menacing blade, and is captioned: “This is not difficult. To the closest kitchen, and go in the name of God.”
Another October report published in the Times highlighted some of the popular “nationalistic” songs stoking the violence, including musical hits such as “Stab, stab” and “Run Over, Run Over the Settler.”
In late October, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas said that Israel has been an occupying power since its creation, only two weeks after he claimed that Israel had “executed” a teen terrorist while the terrorist was alive and recovering in an Israeli hospital. In September, Abbas declared that Palestinians would not allow the “filthy feet” of Jews to defile holy places in Jerusalem.
According to Israel’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Magen David Adom medical emergency service reports that 16 Israelis have been killed and 168 wounded, 20 seriously, between October 1 – November 19. As of Thursday, the IDF recorded 66 stabbings, eight shootings, and eight car ramming attacks.
[Photo: Flash90 ]