Early this morning, four Jews at morning prayers were murdered in a synagogue in Jerusalem after two Palestinian broke in and assaulted the worshipers with gunfire and meat cleavers.
Many others were wounded and four are in critical condition.
The terrorist attack took place in Har Hof a predominantly Orthodox neighborhood at the at the Kehilat Yaakov synagogue on Agasi Street.
The Murder victims were identified as Rabbi Moshe Twersky, the head of the Torat Moshe yeshiva, 59; 40-year-old Rabbi Aryeh Kupinsky; 50-year-old Rabbi Kalman Levine; and 68-year-old Rabbi Avraham Shmuel Goldberg(HY”D) . Rabbi Kupinsky, Rabbi Levine and Rabbi Twersky were all American citizens, while Rabbi Goldberg was a British subject. A Druze policeman subsequently died of his wounds as well, and Israel will mourn and honor him.
The killers stormed the synagogue at 7 AM local time. There was no warning and no way for the victims to defend themselves.The rabbis were murdered during the sacred prayer of Shimoneh Esrei, with siddurim ( prayer books) in their hands and their tefillum on.
Eye witness Ya’akov Amos said: ‘The terrorist moved to within a metre of me then started shooting. One, two, three, bang, bang, bang. I immediately hit the ground and tried to protect myself with a prayer stand. He kept screaming ‘Allah hu’Akbar’.
There was blood everywhere, so much that one of the medical workers slipped in it and broke his leg.
The international reaction was interesting. Even U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry seemed shocked, with his voice quavering. He even used the “T” word and called for an end to incitement against Jews.
Phillip Hammond, Britain’s Foreign Secretary contented himself with a bloodless statement that ‘both sides’ should seek to ‘reduce tension.’ President Obama, of course, said much the same thing.
Israel’s economics minister Naftali Bennett was interviewed by the BBC today, and provides us with another indication of exactly how sick and depraved Britain has become when it comes to Israel and the Jews.
(just a hint – when Bennett mentions Abu Mazen, he is using Mahmoud Abbas’s nom de guerre, the terrorist name he used as Arafat’s second-in-command.)
Notice how the interviewer doesn’t even address the issue of Abbas inciting terrorism, but pulls the case of an Arab bus driver who died yesterday, as though that made the savage murder of four Jews at prayer legitimate. That Arab driver, by the way, had a full investigation and an autopsy done on him and there is no doubt he committed suicide. Unlike the Palestinian Authority, Israel jails murderers no matter who they are.
I really felt like saying ‘Kol Hakavod’ when Bennett held up a picture of one of the victims, which the interviewer hastily told him to put down lest he upset the gentle sensibilities of her viewers. I think it is absolutely essential to do just that – to let the British public see what their government is funding and supporting. And I hope it upsets them to the point of utter shame.
At the end of the interview, Bennett says that Britain is going to have to make a choice of whether they support the Free World or not. As I’m sure Bennett knows, the British Government has already made that choice.Which is why, perhaps, they feel compelled to put up with soldiers being beheaded in broad daylight and no go areas for police and non-Muslims in London and other large British cities.
The murderers were both killed in a shootout with police at the scene. They were Ghassan and Oday Abu Jamal from the Jabal Mukaber neighborhood in east Jerusalem. Needless to say, they were acclaimed as heroes and martyrs by all the factions of the Arabs whom call themselves Palestinians.
“We responded with shouts of joy when we received the news about their deaths,” Ala’a Abu Jamal said of his cousins Ghassan and Uday Abu Jamal to Yedioth Aharonoth. “People here distributed candies to guests who visited us, and there was joy for the martyrs.”
In a message published on its official new website Al-Resalah, Hamas said the attack was “a quality development in fighting the occupation. We highly value the heroism of its operatives.” Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri praised the attack on Qatari news channel Al-Jazeera as “heroic,” calling for more attacks of the same kind.
Hamas MP Mushir Al-Masri happily wrote on Twitter that “Jerusalem has nothing but men who love martyrdom. The heroes of the knife are in Jerusalem. The heroes of the run-over [car attacks] are in Jerusalem. In Jerusalem men take revenge.”
And he posted this on his Facebook page:
The Arab killer is asking ‘Where are they hiding?” Needless to say, in spite of what this cartoon shows none of the worshipers were armed.
And Fatah? Mahmoud Abbas, AKA Abu Mazen issued a ‘condemnation’ that wasn’t one. In a statement (in English, not Arabic)it said that “The Palestinian presidency” condemns violence “from whatever source” and “demands an end to the invasions of Al-Aqsa Mosque and the provocations of the Settlers.”
In other words, ‘So sorry, but unless you surrender Jerusalem to us expect more of the same.’
This is the same Mahmoud Abbas who accused Jews of “contaminating” Al-Aqsa Mosque last week, who just a few days ago was telling his people, in Arabic, to ‘defend Jerusalem’ by any means necessary. This is the same Mahmoud Abbas who said nothing when Fatah published cartoons and Facebook posts encouraging terrorist attacks on Jews and “days of rage” to defend the ‘threatened’ Al-Aqsa.
Tawfik Tirawi, former chief of the Palestinian General Security in the West Bank and a member of Fatah’s Central Committee made it even plainer, and in Arabic. Today he told a radio station in Hebron that the attack was “nothing but a reaction to the recent crimes of the occupation and the settlers in occupied Jerusalem and across the nation. The threats of the occupation against our people and the Palestinian leadership, represented by the president, will only increase our efforts in safeguarding our rights.”
His remarks were reprinted on Fatah’s official Facebook page.
I should make something clear here. This is not the fault of Abbas, or Hamas, or any of the Arabs who identify themselves as Palestinians.
It is the fault of the Israeli government.
A significant number of the Palestinians are simply acting as they have always acted since the 1920’s, and these tendencies were unleashed even further once Arafat and the PLO were allowed in to take over after Oslo.
Israeli governments since Oslo have always allowed themselves to be pressured to ignore these instances of sheer horror…to release convicted murderers, to make concessions to the terrorist entities on Israel’s borders, and most of all to avoid finishing them off entirely when their violence and bloodshed mandated a response. This has been especially true since Barack Obama, who styles himself as the Palestinian’s very own community organizer entered the White House.
Is it any wonder that this sort of thing continues to happen? Is it really so puzzling that after allowing Hamas to continue in Gaza and maintaining any kind of relationship with Abbas and the PLO once they allied themselves openly with Hamas that they would resort back to Arafat’s tactics?
Yasser Arafat himself outlined for his followers what this war was really about. On Jordanian TV, right after signing the Oslo Accords he was criticized for signing a peace agreement with the Jews. He responded by reminding his audience of the Peace of Hubidiyeh, a treaty Mohammed made with the Quraysh tribe that he violated as soon as he was strong enough to massacre them, a story every Muslim knows. And then he outlined exactly what this war was about, saying that “either the Jews will push us into the sea or we will push them into the sea.”
Arafat, the leaders of Hamas and numerous members of Fatah have sung the same songs for years. Is it their fault that Israeli governments for years have refused to take them seriously?
It is time they did.
The violence in Jerusalem can be curtailed, not by more security patrols and not by putting guards in front of every synagogue and public building but by teaching the Arabs whom call themselves Palestinians that there are real world consequences for their actions.
As you may have noticed, no matter how much innocent Jewish blood is spilled, it is always Israel who is advised to ‘reduce tensions’ and ‘avoid provocation.’ It is always Israel who is castigated for building homes for its people, in spite of over an estimated 40,000 illegal Arab-built structures in East Jerusalem, and an entire city being constructed from scratch with EU and US Aid money that encroaches on Israeli communities in Area C of Judea.
This is the first time I have ever heard John Kerry mention the constant hatred being spewed by the mosques, media and schools in both Gaza and in the PLO occupied areas of Judea and Samaria as something counterproductive to any real peace. And even his condemnation of this horror as well as the other ones from the UN and EU that will no doubt be voiced are maddeningly hollow..because they still fund and support this evil.
As Naftali Bennett said, they are going to have to choose sides, and that particularly applies to the United States.But Israel has some choices to make as well.
Are they going to settle for the status quo and a war of attrition that favors Israel’s enemies? Or are they are they going to do what’s necessary to end it and win the right to live peacefully?
I’ve always favored Israel simply delineating its own borders and annexing that land,along with a transfer of populations to the respective sides of those borders. But at the very least Israel should answer every terrorist attack with the outright annexation of more land in Judea and Samaria, showing the Arabs whom call themselves Palestinians that they are there to stay, and that attacks on Israel cost them dearly. Build on the land, and call the EU’s bluff. In the unlikely event that they follow through on their threats to indulge in sanctions,they have a lot more to lose than Israel does right now economically.
When there are violent riots, as there were in Jabal Mukaber today, simply arrest the perpetrators,take away their Israeli ID cards and expel them to Gaza or to Area A for Abbas to deal with.Aside from providing real world consequences, it will also separate those Arabs who like the good life in Israel and are willing to live in peace (and there are more of them them you think) from those whom want to poison the well with violence.
Make the disarmament of Hamas an iron clad condition for any further reconstruction aid, especially since Hamas is already diverting money and materials to remaking its terrorist infrastructure. Both the EU and Secretary of State Kerry have given lip service to the importance of disarming Hamas for peace. Hold them to it.
If the Muslim Waqf that is in charge of the al-Aqsa Mosque continues to incite riots and stone throwing on the Temple Mount and refuses to allow Jews to enjoy it peacefully, simply explain to them that the next time it happens the police will respond in force, the Waqf’s control of al-Aqsa and the Mount will be ended, the members of the Waqf expelled from Israel and the mosque shut down.
And allow Israelis to sue the PLO and Hamas in Israelis courts for damages to property and person, taking the judgments out of the tax monies Israel collects for the PLO.
These are the sort of steps that are ultimately going to defeat the Third Intifada. It’s long past time to treat Hamas/Fatah like the hostile entity it is.
I am tired of seeing headlines like I saw today, tired of seeing the Arabs whom identify themselves as Palestinians celebrating each new atrocity, tired of seeing world leaders being complicit with this evil.
And I am especially tired of Israel accepting this hypocrisy. I am sick to death of it. It is one thing to be the Jew among nations, but something else entirely to live on your knees and internalize it.
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