Exclusive: Western Journalism Reports From Israel’s New Front In Judea

IDF soldiers guard a bus stop at Gush Etzion intersection

IDF soldiers guard a bus stop at Gush Etzion intersection (photo credit: Yochanan Visser)


Analysis: What are the effects of the current Palestinian Knife Jihad on Israeli society.

Highway 60 from Jerusalem to Hebron has always been dangerous to travel, not only because of reckless behavior by Palestinian Arab drivers who often overtake where it’s absolutely forbidden but the road is also a prime target for terrorists.

It is a day after a Palestinian Arab rammed his car into a group of Jews who were standing along the road near Halhoul, a Palestinian town a kilometer away from the Israeli village of Carmei Tzur. The attempted murder was caught on video. A car with Palestinian license plates can be seen speeding on Highway 60 when the driver suddenly departs from the road and rams his car in the group of Jews.

An officer of the Border Police was critically hurt in the vehicular terrorist attack. He suffered severe head injuries when the car hit him frontally.

On my way to the main intersection in Gush Etzion, I noticed lots of soldiers guarding Highway 60 which goes through the Palestinian villages Beit Umar and Al Aroub. These villages are known for their support of Hamas and have been the scene of numerous terror attacks.

When the armored autobus I traveled with reached the Gush Etzion intersection (Tzomet HaGush) I noticed the change in security measures that have been taken since a recent string of stabbing and vehicular attacks that targeted the Jewish residents of this largest ‘settlement’ bloc in Judea.

At every bus stop four heavily armed soldiers guard Jewish travelers and at the central square of Tzomet HaGush an armored vehicle of the IDF is on permanent alert. People stay away from the sidewalks because of fear for another vehicular attack.

At the local Ramy Levi supermarket, everything seems business as usual. Arab and Jewish employees are stacking the shelves while customers are buying food for Shabbat. The only difference with the situation that existed until recently is the absence of Arab clients. The manager of the supermarket told me that since the Knife Jihad began more than a month ago Arab clients stay away out of fear for reprisal attacks.

Since its opening a few years ago, the supermarket had always been a model of Arab-Jewish coexistence in the region. When I interviewed Rami Levy the owner of the supermarket chain some years ago, he told me that he thought that peace could only be achieved via this type of day to day coexistence.

But now everything looks very different. Few in Israel still have illusions about peace with the Palestinians. More than twenty years after the signing of the Oslo accords the peace process seems a thing of the past.

Israelis have become very pragmatic and realize there won’t be quick fixes for the multiple problems they face and certainly not for the conflict with the Palestinian Arabs.

The ‘two states for two peoples’ slogan that had been adopted by a majority of the Israeli people only ten years ago has slowly been replaced with another one: “One state for our people”.

Israelis now seem to realize that the 1948 war for independence has in fact never ended and that the current struggle is as much an existential one as it was then.

“The Arabs don’t want us here, and that’s why we have to take care of ourselves in the first place. It’s them or us,” is what you now often hear from Israeli Jews.

They have cast their illusions about peace aside and have internalized the fact that Islamism is the leading trend in the Middle East today. They see what the Islamic State is doing just over the border in Syria and in Egypt where this week a Russian airplane with 224 passengers was brought down by the Jihadi group. They know that this type of extremism has taken root in Palestinian society as well and saw what the supposedly moderate President of the PA Mahmoud Abbas said during a speech in Geneva last week. Abbas told the UN Human Rights Council that all of Israel is occupied Palestinian territory.

Abbas said:

“For how long will this protracted Israeli occupation of our land last? After 67 years, how long?”

This is the reality Israelis have to cope with. They see no light at the end of the tunnel. To the contrary, the situation seems to become grimmer by the day.

Until now, the war against Palestinian terrorism was a matter of the IDF against organizations like Hamas and Islamic Jihad. But now Israelis have to cope with a new normal: every Arab could be a terrorist.

As a result, self-protection has become a very important issue in Israeli society. People spend huge amounts of money on taking protective measures like reinforcing the windows of their cars (against stone throwing) or obtaining a license for a gun.

People who are already in the possession of a gun are now encouraged to carry the weapon wherever they go.

It won’t stop the ‘wave of terror’ however. In the Gush Etzion area, there is no shortage of weapons or soldiers. You see soldiers everywhere, yet the region saw the highest number of attacks against Jews since the start of what Hamas calls “The Jerusalem Intifada.”

Palestinian society is still convinced that the existence of Israel is temporary and that the use of this type of violence will achieve what the first and second Intifada failed to do: The fear of a knife in one’s back will eventually cause Jews to pack their bags and leave Israel, the Palestinian Arabs think.

This type of thinking is fueled by incitement and propaganda by the PA and Hamas and flies in the face of reality. Israeli Jews have proven time and again that nothing will force them to contemplate leaving Israel. This reality is visible in Israel today as well. Instead of despairing people go on with their lives as if nothing has changed and when things become though there’s always humor to cope with the troubles.

Take for example a look at  this Israeli Jewish man who looks like an Arab and wears a t-shirt with the text: “Please relax I am only a Yemenite Jew”.


And then there is this Israeli man who put the following on his Facebook page:


And this Israeli wrote the following on his FB page:


“Surreal what people are bringing with them when they go outside…”

Rachel’s Tomb In Bethlehem Stormed By Arabs After New String Of Attacks On Israeli Jews

After a relatively quiet day on Monday, when only a stone and firebomb throwing was reported in Judea and Samaria (so-called West Bank), Palestinian stabbing and vehicular attacks on Jews were back in full force on Tuesday.

On Tuesday morning, a Palestinian Arab attacked a Jew with a knife in Hebron and was then shot and killed by IDF soldiers.

A few hours later, a Palestinian truck driver killed Avraham Asher Hasano, 50, from Kiryat Arba near Hebron. Hasano, a father of seven, pulled over his car after it was hit by rocks thrown by Palestinian Arabs. He then got out of the car with a club but was run over by the truck driver who fled the scene and turned himself in at a Palestinian police station. The driver was later questioned by the Shin Beth, the Israeli internal security service, which determined that the driver intentionally hit Hasano, TV Channel 10 in Israel reported.

Several hours later, a Palestinian Arab driver rammed his van into a group of Israeli hitchhikers at the Gush Etzion junction and wounded two of them. When the driver got out of his car, he pulled a knife but was immediately shot dead by IDF soldiers. The Gush Etzion junction is located on road 60 between Jerusalem and Hebron and has been the scene of countless terror attacks.

The vehicular attack was recorded on a CCTV camera and later posted online by Channel 10 and other media in Israel.

At 5.00 PM, an explosive device was found and neutralized near a kindergarten school in Nes Ziona, close to the Israeli city of Rehovot.

An hour later, Palestinian Arabs in Gaza again stormed the border with Israel while throwing rocks and Molotov cocktails in the direction of IDF soldiers, who opened fire and killed at least one Arab.

Earlier, IDF snipers had opened fire on a target in Gaza. A spokesman for the army said that the fire was directed at the source of repeated sniper fire towards IDF troops and technicians who are repairing the border fence.

Shortly before 10.00 PM local time this evening, IDF soldiers in Hebron shot and killed two Palestinian Arabs who tried to stab them. One soldier was slightly injured from the incident.

There were tens of other violent incidents today that involved rock and firebomb throwing, as well as various areas in Judea and Samaria where Arabs rioted. This afternoon, for example, hundreds of Palestinian Arabs stormed Rachel’s Tomb near Bethlehem, but were stopped by the Border Police. A police officer was injured when Arabs threw a firebomb at him.

The attack came a few days after Arabs set fire at Joseph’s Tomb in the Nablus (Shechem) area.

Arab affairs expert Tzvi Yechezkieli of Channel 10 TV News explained that Hamas is behind the string of attacks today. He pointed out that the terrorist organization organizes the daily attacks on the Gaza-Israel border and is responsible for the escalation in the Hebron area. Hamas has a very strong presence in Hebron and other Palestinian villages in Judea, and wants the violence to escalate into a full-blown Intifada.

The Fatah-dominated Palestinian Authority appears to be interested in dousing the flames because of the risk that things will spin out of control. The PA fears that Hamas will use the violence to weaken the position of PA President Mahmoud Abbas, who is already very unpopular.

Watch: Palestinian Terrorists In Jerusalem Use ISIS-Style Violence In New Attacks Against Israeli Citizens

Warning: Footage Contains Graphic Violence [Some Images Are Blurred]

Arab terror against Israeli Jews continued unabated on Tuesday. Within only a few hours, four terror attacks took place, two in Jerusalem and two in Ra’anana on Tuesday morning. Police foiled a fifth attack in Tel Aviv, but another attack in Kiryat Ata was carried out by a Jew who wanted to take revenge and mistakenly stabbed a fellow Jew.

Three people were murdered and dozens wounded in the wave of attacks.

In Jerusalem, Arab terrorists carried out two attacks simultaneously in the neighborhood of Armon HaNatziv and the Geulah neighborhood.

Two terrorists entered a bus in Armon HaNatziv and started shooting and stabbing people.

One of the terrorists forced the driver to hand over the steering wheel but did not succeed in driving away. He then locked the doors of the bus. Police later confirmed that the terrorists intended to hijack the bus. Two passengers died in the attack and 17 others were wounded, some of them critically. Police killed one of the terrorists and the other was seriously wounded during the rescue attempt.

Both men were in their twenties and came from the Arab village Jabal al-Mukaber, a Jerusalem suburb. A photo that circulated on social media after the attack showed one of them wearing a Hamas scarf and a green headband the color of Hamas. TV Channel 10 in Israel later reported that the second terrorist was a member of Fatah.

An Israeli citizen played a major role in foiling the hijack of the bus. Golan Cohen Gabbay saw what happened and decided to block the road with his car. One of the terrorists then opened the doors of the bus in order to stab him, but Gabbay closed the doors and windows of the car. When the terrorist returned with a pistol to kill Gabbay, he was shot down by police officers who had arrived at the scene.

The second attack in Jerusalem was carried out with a car and a meat cleaver in Geulah, a neighborhood populated by ultra-orthodox Jews. The attack was recorded on video.

The Arab terrorist, an employee of Bezeq Israel’s national telephone company, rammed his company car into a group of people waiting at a bus stop. The terrorist then got out of the car and started to hit people with a meat cleaver.

A security guard who saw what was happening ran to the scene and shot the terrorist, wounding him. The terrorist did not give up and threw the meat cleaver in the direction of the guard. He then got up again and was shot again but succeeded to proceed in the direction of his car. The security guard finally killed him, a man who was related to a terrorist who last year murdered several Jews in a synagogue in the Har Nof neighborhood in Jerusalem. He too came from the village of Jabal al-Mugaber and seemed to be influenced by Islamic State.

One Israeli Jew was killed, and several others were seriously wounded in the attack. See the video above.

Panic broke out in Jerusalem directly after the attacks and led to the temporary closure of two main roads leading to the city, Highway one from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem and Highway 443 from Modi’in to Jerusalem.

Mayor Nir Barkat of Jerusalem, who was interviewed at the scene of one the attacks, said that more needs to be done to return quiet and security to the city. He proposed closing off Arab neighborhoods.

Another two stabbing attacks occurred in the Israeli city of Ra’anana this morning.

A 22-year-old Arab terrorist from Jerusalem stabbed a man who succeeded to subdue the terrorist with the help of bystanders who used pepper spray. Four people were also stabbed by a 20-year-old Arab terrorist from Jerusalem. He fled the scene but was pursued by civilians. One of them hit the terrorist with his car, and other bystanders helped to subdue him.

Police later foiled a fifth stabbing attack in Tel Aviv and in the city of Kiryat Gat an Israeli Jew mistakenly stabbed a fellow Jew when he wanted to take revenge for the attacks in Jerusalem. He entered the local branch of IKEA to stab an Arab employee but could not identify one. He then stabbed a Jew who looked like an Arab.

That situation illustrates the growing anger among the Jewish population in Israel over the continuing wave of horrific attacks by Arabs. Many people have decided to boycott Arab products and Arab shops and some propose a total ban on Arab workers in Israeli companies.

The Israeli government ignored calls for a closure of the West Bank (Judea and Samaria) and for imposing a curfew in the Arab neighborhoods in Jerusalem.

The Arabs have warned that imposing a curfew on the Arab neighborhoods would trigger an even more violent uprising.

The government in Jerusalem has now ordered the IDF to assist the police in population centers. IDF units will patrol crowded areas and construction sites where most workers are Arabs. The Israeli cabinet is reportedly also mulling over revoking residency permits for Arab Jerusalemites, and is discussing a proposal to encircle Arab neighborhoods.

It seems highly doubtful that those measures will help to quell the violence. Hamas just published another inciting video that instructs Arabs exactly how to carry out stabbing attacks and was reportedly related to the attacks in Jerusalem this morning. The terror organization is exploiting the mood in the Arab society in Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria where dissatisfaction with the Palestinian Authority is growing and where the influence of Islamist groups such as Islamic State and Hizb ut-Tahrir is on the rise.

The Palestinian Arabs are seeing that in Syria, Iraq, Yemen, Libya and the Sinai dessert in Egypt how the Islamic State is using unprecedented violence to take over regimes and territory, and believe the same is possible in Israel.

WATCH: Arabs Incited To Stage Terror Attacks Against Jews

The current wave of violence by Arabs against Jews in Israel is characterized by attacks with knives, rocks and firebombs. The shooting attacks and suicide bombings that characterized the Second Intifada that started in September 2000 are not as frequent, although an Israeli couple was murdered in a drive-by shooting and Islamic Jihad threatened to resume the suicide bombings last week.

It is no coincidence that Arabs now use knives, rocks and firebombs to attack Jews.

First, the price of rifles and pistols have skyrocketed in the West Bank (Judea and Samaria). For example, an AK-47 assault rifle now sells for more than $2,000.

Secondly, the IDF and the Israeli Security Service Shin Beth have succeeded in dismantling much of the terror infrastructure that was built in the West Bank by Hamas since the Second Intifada.

But there are other reasons why the Arabs now prefer stabbing above shooting attacks.

The current wave of terror attacks is chiefly executed by lone-wolf terrorists who only have to buy a sharp knife. That’s why virtually every Arab now can stage his own terrorist attack.

They are encouraged to do so by Hamas. The Palestinian terror group produced several videos in which Hamas incites hatred and violence against Jews and Israel. The central theme is that the “Al-Aqsa Mosque is in danger because of Israeli aggression.”

This week, Hamas published a staged, propaganda video in which two Arabs disguise as Jews and walk the streets of what is supposed to be the Old City of Jerusalem. One of the “Jews” harasses an Arab youth who falls on the ground. A young Arab is watching the scene and decides to act. He can be seen stabbing one “Jew” and slitting the throat of another.

(warning graphic images)

In a second video, Israeli security forces in the Old City of Jerusalem can be seen battling the now banned Islamist female group Murabitat. This group used to harass Jews in the Old City and on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem.

Scenes of Murabitat members who confront Israeli police officers and arrests of members of Murabitat are followed by images of a young Arab male who grabs a knife. After new real-time footage of disturbances between Arabs and the Israeli police, staged images of Palestinian terrorists with a pistol and a drive-by shooting follow. Historic footage of Hamas terror attacks against Israeli targets are shown next.

The video ends with more footage of attacks against Israeli security forces and staged images of a speeding car, a terrorist who wields a knife, kindles a Molotov cocktail and shoots at a window.

The images are accompanied by a song about the Al-Aqsa Mosque and the duty to defend the shrine with knives, firebombs, pistols and vehicular attacks.

These kind of attacks are precisely what’s happening in Israel. Palestinian Arabs are using knives, firebombs, cars and pistols to terrorize Israelis. At 4 PM local time, more than thirty attacks were reported, some of which were carried out with knives.

The Islamic Jihad terrorist who killed two Jewish men and wounded a woman and a two-year-old child in the Old City of Jerusalem last week was strongly influenced by the Murabitat video. He referred on his Facebook page to the humiliation of Palestinian Arab women and predicted that the Palestinians would rise up:

According to what I see, the Third Intifada has erupted. What is happening to al-Aqsa (Mosque) is what is happening to our holy sites, and what is happening to the women of al-Aqsa is what is happening to our mothers and women. I don’t believe that our people will succumb to humiliation. The people will indeed rise up.


Palestinian Violence Continues To Escalate As Israel Braces For New Terror War

Less than four days after Fatah terrorists murdered an Israeli couple in front of their four young children, it is becoming clear that the Palestinians want another Intifada.

On Saturday, a 19-year-old Palestinian Arab from the Palestinian town of El-Bireh near Ramallah murdered two Israeli men and wounded a woman and a baby with a knife in the Old City of Jerusalem.

The terrorist, Muhammad Halabi, was shot and killed by Israeli police officers after he grabbed the gun of one of his victims and fired at the security forces who had arrived at the scene of the attack. The day before he embarked on his murderous mission he wrote on his Facebook page “The Third Intifada is here.”

He appeared to be influenced by the incitement campaign about the supposed Israeli threats against the Al-Aqsa mosque on the Temple Mount. Halabi, who was a student at Jerusalem’s Al-Quds University wrote the following on his FB page:

According to what I see, the Third Intifada has erupted. What is happening to al-Aqsa (Mosque) is what is happening to our holy sites, and what is happening to the women of al-Aqsa is what is happening to our mothers and women. I don’t believe that our people will succumb to humiliation. The people will indeed rise up.

Halabi’s remarks about the Palestinian women on the Temple Mount was in reference to the Israeli ban of the Islamist female group, Murabitat, who used to harass Jewish visitors to the Mount.

Shortly after the deadly stabbing attack, more Palestinian violence was reported in Judea, Samaria and Jerusalem. The light rail in Jerusalem was once again stoned by Arabs in the Shuafat neighborhood in northeast Jerusalem and a second stabbing attack by an Arab terrorist wounded a 15-year-old Jewish boy in the Mamilla mall.

An Israeli Arab was attacked and wounded in the vicinity of Kiryat Arab by a mob of Palestinian Arabs who took him for a Jew. The ambulance that took the Israeli to a hospital was stoned and an IDF army jeep that chased after the rock-throwers was attacked with a fire bomb and went up in flames.

At the same time, Palestinian Arabs fired at an IDF checkpoint near Beth El in Samaria and several other shooting attacks were reported in the Israeli city of Lod, Jerusalem, Ma’aleh Adumim and Cochav Ya’acov. Two Israeli minors were reportedly injured in these attacks.

The stabbing attack in the Old City drew a response from groups of Jews in downtown Jerusalem. An Arab taxi driver was attacked by a group Jews who chanted “Death to the Arabs” and violent clashes between groups of Jews and Arabs broke out in the Mamilla pedestrian mall outside the walls of the Old City of Jerusalem. In the area of Neve Tzuv and the Palestinian city, Nablus cars belonging to Palestinian Arabs were stoned, likely by Jews.

After three days of silence, the Palestinian Authority finally responded to the deadly terror attacks on Thursday and Saturday. The PA called upon the world to intervene because of Israel’s “policy of escalation” and “the killing of two young men in occupied Jerusalem and the series of incursions into cities and villages in the West Bank.” The “two young men” the PA mentioned in its statement were the two terrorists that were shot dead after the murders of the Henkin family and the deadly stabbing in Jerusalem.

WAFA, the official Palestinian news agency, published the statement by PA spokesman Ihab Bseiso, who did not mention the terror attacks that killed four Israelis and wounded at least six others but again claimed that Israel tries to “divide the Al-Aqsa mosque.”

The Arab language website of WAFA manipulated the news about the deadly stabbing attack in Jerusalem. The WAFA reported that the “occupation army” (IDF) killed a young Palestinian “who allegedly was involved in a stabbing attack in occupied Jerusalem.” The English web page told a different story: “a Palestinian, 19-year-old Mohannad Halabi from Ramallah, was shot dead after he stabbed and killed two Jewish extremists in Jerusalem’s Old City.”

Earlier WAFA and other Palestinian media spread a false report about the death of a six-year-old Palestinian boy near the city of Qalqilyah. The Palestinian media reported that a “Jewish settler” had shot and killed the boy, but both the IDF and Israeli media reported that he had died because he and his brother were playing with a loaded gun.

Jordanian journalist Mudar Zahran presented further evidence that the Palestinian Authority is not only fanning the flames in the escalation of violence but is in fact the organizing force behind what Yediot Acharonot, Israel’s leading newspaper, calls the Third Intifada.

Zahran tweeted a link to the Facebook page of Amiri, a Palestinian refugee camp, that showed that PA security forces were actively involved in organizing violent riots.

Intifada 3

The incitement that played a large part in the escalating violence since the riots at the Temple Mount on the eve of Rosh Hashanah (Jewish New Year) was also responsible for massive stone throwing that occurred on Route 60 between Jerusalem and Hebron on Sunday morning.

A source in the Israeli security forces in the area of Al-Arub and Beit Umar, two Palestinian villages along Route 60 in Judea, told Western Journalism that muezzin of the central mosque in Beit Umar broadcasted an audio recording of the fatal stabbing attack in Jerusalem during the morning prayers. A Jewish woman, probably the wounded mother, could be heard screaming “Please save us.” Shortly afterward the massive rock-throwing on Route 60 began.

Arabs in the same area had earlier celebrated the death of the Henkin couple who were murdered by Palestinian terrorists in front of their four little children on Thursday. They handed out sweets and shot fireworks. The murder on Nehemia Lavi (41) and Aharon Benneth (21) on Saturday was celebrated too. Arabs set up a Facebook page in honor of Muhammad Halabi, the terrorist who stabbed the two Jews to death. The page gained more than 2000 likes in 24 hours.

Meanwhile, the IDF has started a crackdown on Palestinian terrorists. The elite unit, Duvdevan, arrested scores of Palestinian suspects during early-morning raids in the Palestinian cities Nablus and Jenin in Samaria. The IDF has also reinforced its presence in Judea and Samaria and is reportedly preparing incursions in villages and cities that are known to be hotbeds of terrorism.

Other measures taken by Israel include a ban on prayer in the Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem for Muslims younger than 50 years and a partly closure of the Old City in Jerusalem for Muslims. Buses with Muslim worshippers that were on their way to the Al-Aqsa mosque were stopped by Israeli police and sent back to where they departed.