There will be reports that this is just another episode triggering the next round in the cycle of violence between the Israelis and the Palestinians. Then should Israel exact a price for the death of a young woman and injuring of a soldier and an elderly man at a ride stop where a Palestinian initially aimed to strike these three people waiting for their ride with his car but they managed to dive out of the way. The Palestinian driver then sprung from his car and started slashing and stabbing the three victims of this latest in a string of terror attacks where cars were initially used as weapons and like a former attack where after running down people a Palestinian driver jumped from his car and attacked people with a tire iron and then attempted to strike the police who demanded he drop the iron before being forced to shoot him. In this stabbing attack the security officer at the entrance to a community saw the events and charged over and when the Palestinian turned his attention on the security guard he responded shooting the terrorist. The other stabbing attack occurred at the entrance to the Hahagana train station where a Palestinian who had illegally entered Israel from Shechem (Nablus) in Samaria whose victim was a twenty-year-old IDF soldier and Magen David Adom (MDA) paramedics tried to resuscitate the young soldier whose condition was not known at the time of writing this article. These attacks come on top of an attack Sunday evening outside the Arab town of Taibeh. In this attack an Israeli driver returning home had his car come under rock attack, something which had been restricted to Judea, Samaria and the Jerusalem area until very recently. He was forced to duck to the floor of his car to avoid the barrage of rocks so the mob set his vehicle on fire. He survived in what must be considered a form of miracle as apparently some in the mob were not prepared to commit blatant murder, should one of the cars struck with the rocks have lost control, that would have been different, this was an obvious assault with the intent which guaranteed the victim’s death. These former assailants turned good Samaritans and dragged the victim from his car and snuck him into a nearby car and drove him to an IDF station and left him off where he could receive assistance. This assault was part of a called for ‘Day of Violence’ which also included rock attacks on the Jerusalem light rail system and riots in various Arab neighborhoods both in the Palestinian areas and within Israeli Arab towns.
Of all these attacks, one matched something I have been waiting to arrive as I was curious if the reactions would match my suspicions. I have long suspected that should a terrorist attack strike within Tel Aviv, especially in either the central areas or northern Tel Aviv or any of the northern and eastern suburbs, I predicted that then there would be a general out-calling for action against terrorism and an increased level of security forces to any level necessary to make the lives of those in the ‘nice’ neighborhoods of Tel Aviv safe for the people living within the central city and hub of all that matters. Within a couple of hours of the attack on the IDF soldier at Hahagana train station close to central Tel Aviv, we started hearing from one Knesset minister after another demanding security be increased and Israel made safe once again for its citizens. There had been the occasional peep about turning up the level of efforts to secure places from terrorist violence with most of the calls centering on Jerusalem but seldom calls for securing beyond the Green Line in the so-called settler areas except for the religious Zionist parties and the more right-wing members of Likud. Now, even one of the most centrist and critical of the right wing and ardent Zionists such as Naftali Bennett even spoke up, Tzipi Livni spoke demanding action. The Justice Minister stated, “We should fight against terrorism. We need to understand that everything is connected – Jerusalem, Gaza, the West Bank (Judea-Samaria) and Tel Aviv, and there will be those who will try to take advantage of these days to market childish and irresponsible slogans. It is our responsibility to tell the truth even when it hurts.” Livni went further stating, “For some of the citizens of Israel, Arab citizens of Israel are seen as the enemy; for the Arab citizens of Israel, the government is perceived as a regime over outsiders. We must put an end to it, we must first stop it and say that responsibility rests on the shoulders of our representatives – we are the ones who need to calm the situation before it is too late, even if we say things contrary to public opinion.” Aside from some snide allegations, Minister of the Knesset and Justice Minister Livni’s statement was extreme when compared with her normal measured and restrained language when referring Palestinian violence which seldom receives her most vindictive and acid tongues; that is reserved for the likes of Naftali Bennett, Danny Danon or even Prime Minister Netanyahu. Still, it is appreciated her finally realized that the terrorism can and will strike anywhere and anyone and that it is just a matter of time until wherever you are that terrorism will finally reach your neck in the woods, or train station in Tel Aviv.
There was also commentary from Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas’s fellow Palestinian spokespeople. Political advisor Nimer Hammad stated, “Abbas is making sure that our people are not drawn into a cycle of violence and counter-violence, according to the Netanyahu government’s plan to curb the diplomatic and political pressure against it.” Meanwhile, Abbas advisor Sultan Abu Al-Einein, wrote on Facebook, “Today, Jerusalem is seething with rage; behold the volcanoes of rage spewing lava in the faces of those who have defiled it, and in the faces of the occupying usurper. The earthshaking reaction came from the heroes of Jerusalem.” Al-Einein has also recently praised those perpetrating violence against Israelis including the assassin who almost murdered Yehuda Glick calling these perpetrators of deadly violence as, “illustrious and blessed children” who are “saturating the land of the homeland with their pure blood and igniting the flames of rage.” This is the usual response from the Palestinian leadership with contradictory statements with one set aimed for European and American audiences while making completely opposite statements for the ears of Palestinians, others in the Arab and Muslim world as well as for those Muslims in Western societies to be utilized as a recruitment or prevocational tool to facilitate terrorism throughout the West as often such terrorism has caused some Western leaders to place even more pressures on Israel blaming Israel for the terrorist activities within their borders such as what President Obama claimed that it was Israel’s inability to reach a peace with the Palestinians and in reaching an accord which formed a Palestinian state around the 1967 lines that caused the situations which led to the formation of ISIS. This would have been ridiculous except it followed within the week of a similar claim and threat from the leader of Iran Ayatollah Khamenei. Sometimes it is hard to tell the difference between self-proclaimed enemies and friends.
The one benefit which will result from this is that finally there will be a reevaluation of the severe restrictions placed on the police, IDF and other security and law enforcement personnel when facing such acts as the rock assaults and other provocations including rioting and throwing firebombs (Molotov Cocktails) at Temple Mount police such that Palestinian violence, and any other forms of violence, can be thwarted and restore sanity and order in all the areas under Israeli security control by treaties which constitute international law. I really wish in many varied ways that the attack in Tel Aviv and the other attacks had not occurred and regret that there is a young lady who is no longer with us and a family with a hole which can never be closed opened up in their lives. Even potentially worse is that there may be one or two more who may not survive their wounds from the assaults today and other families whose tables will have an empty chair at every family celebration in the future. These losses would be in addition to the thousands on both sides who have paid the ultimate price in what has been an intractable problem which has persisted due to the inability of a large number of people from all across the globe and across almost every classification and nationality to accept the Jewish state of Israel and a subset of those who are willing to commit acts of horrific violence to protest and with aims to terminate that tiny state’s existence.
Would it be beyond reason to hope that there will come a time when Israel will no longer be the most crucial and most scrutinized nation where so many invest so much time, efforts and vitriol on Israel and simply ignoring so many other threatening and dangerous problems? Russia has sent columns of tanks, artillery and MLRS (multiple launch rocket system) including minimally Grad systems as reported by authorities in Kiev, Ukraine. There has been violence in Nigeria where Boko Haram exploded another school killing many children. If you must choose to protest occupations because they are the highest crime against other societies, then why not protest and concentrate on one that has been ongoing for long before the 1967 War which resulted in Israeli holding the lands now contested and far more oppressive and consisting of population transfers designed to destroy an ancient civilization which almost rivals Judaism in age, that is the Chinese occupation of Tibet and their attempt to destroy the Buddhist culture of that ancient and peaceful nation started initially in 1950 and was completed by 1959 with parts of Tibet falling in stages to Communist Chinese aggressions. The Chinese even went so far as to appoint their own Dalai Lama claiming their choice to be the true and real leader of the Tibetan Buddhists despite the original Dalai Lama being in exile and still revered by the Tibetan people. Then there are the people of the Basque Country regions which are subsumed by Spain and France and have desired their independence for many years with their cries being met by the deaf ears of the European Union which is spending much of their time and trouble castigating Israel. Where did the new European Union Foreign Minister Federica Mogherini make her first intervention? Was it the Basque Country? No, she left the boundaries of Europe leaving the problems both economic and others in order to visit Jerusalem where she demanded the Israeli capital city be split and become the capital city for the Palestinians as well even if that might mean that Israelis will be denied access to the holy sites in eastern Jerusalem just as things had been when the Jordanians destroyed numerous Jewish holy sites which is exactly what the Palestinian Authority leadership has promised to do in speeches to their people in Arabic. But does the European Union Foreign Minister Mogherini bother her little head over such threats? She probably claims that she never heard of such threats and would then claim that such threats are made only for the consumption of the Palestinian people and that the Israelis must be exaggerating their claims of Jordanian destructions of Jewish sites between 1949 and 1967 despite Israeli proofs. One item before closing this article, I have noticed that with many European political elites when weighing Israeli claims and objections backed by photographic, video, and published evidence such as the anti-Semitic, anti-Israel and anti-Zionist teachings and textbooks which have mostly been paid for by European and American funding and Palestinian simple rebuttal of Israel is lying about us again, the Europeans take the evidence into consideration and back the Palestinians almost universally. Maybe the Europeans should take some of the time they spend attempting to destroy Israel and instead rebuild the Greek infrastructure and economy, assist the Spanish in their well-intentioned and potentially beneficial revamping of their tax system and repeal of their strangling environmental restrictions which killed their economy and climb back to become a contributing economic power within Europe or assist with the infrastructure repair and rebuilding in eastern Europe and the other difficulties plaguing so many within the European continent and find some solution to the threats from Putin to freeze the continent if they do not bow to his will. Maybe you might try to make a deal with Israel for natural gas as there is a rumor that Israel has much natural gas to sell and if you are nice about it, perhaps Israel will grant you a good price. Try, you might be pleasantly surprised.
Beyond the Cusp