Israel’s experience in fighting terrorism can help Europe face its own threats, former Israeli Ambassador to the UN Ron Prosor wrote in an op-ed (Google link) published Tuesday in The Wall Street Journal.
Starting last September, Prosor wrote, Israel began facing “a new generation of terrorists radicalized on social media [that] has launched more than 300 attacks in Israel using knives, guns and vehicles.” The challenge now is that “no longer do these people need training camps, bomb-making expertise or even an order. All they need is an internet connection, incitement and the desire to kill.”
Fighting terror unites all religions, Prosor noted—Muslims have been targeted by Islamic extremists most of all, which has led to “under the radar” anti-terror cooperation between Israel, Western nations, and Arab states.
Prosor recounted how Israeli counter-terrorism innovations have been adopted around the world, such as state-of-the-art airport security measures and the use of tactical drones to target terrorist leaders. Those methods were initially criticized, but were later adopted in the international fight against terror. One Israeli tactic to thwart the threat of car rammings, such as occurred in Nice, was to install concrete barriers by bus stops to protect vulnerable civilians.
Last week’s terror attack in France struck a particular chord with Israelis, Prosor wrote: “The devastation in Nice was on a vast scale, but the method of attack is painfully familiar. Since October, 44 terrorist attacks have used motor vehicles as a weapon against Israelis.”
The similarity between the Nice attack and those that have taken place in Israel was not lost on ISIS supporters. One supporter credited Palestinian terrorism for inspiring the Nice attack in a message on the messaging app Telegram: “Killing by ramming using civilian cars and trucks is an idea born from the Maqdisi [Palestinian] mind, which has an innovative nature of thinking up jihad tactics. Yesterday they taught us [about] the explosive vest, and many plans for street fighting, and today they taught us this tactic. May Allah bless Jerusalem and the environs of Jerusalem, and may Allah bless all of the Levant… Oh Aqsa, we are coming.”
[Photo: Miriam Alster / Flash90 ]