Way Too Close For Comfort

I had intended to update my readers about yesterday’s Arab terrorist attacks, which included several stabbing sprees, one of them by two teenage terrorists, who went on a knife rampage in the Jerusalem neighbourhood of Pisgat Zeev, seriously wounding a young man in his twenties. They then fell like beasts of prey on a 13-year-old Jewish boy who was innocently riding his bicycle, stabbing him over a dozen times, before being neutralised. One of the terrorist thugs was killed and the second was seriously wounded. These two wild beasts were aged only 15 and 13. No doubt the European and other foreign media will headline the story (as they usually do) “Palestinian child killed by Israeli forces after Jerusalem attack”. After all, Mahmoud Abbas (Abu Mazen) is already calling the killing of the older terrorist an “execution

Meanwhile, the 13-year-old Jewish child whom they tried to murder is still in serious condition, (as is the older victim) despite the stabilisation of his condition, following apparently successful surgery performed by the devoted surgical team at the Hadassah Mount Scopus Hospital, including Head of General Surgery Prof. Ahmed Eid (who, as you have probably guessed from his name, is an Arab – because hey! Naturally the Head of Surgery in a leading Israeli hospital would be an Arab, Israel being, don’t you know, an apartheid state and all that…)

As I said, I had intended to give you all a detailed update on yesterday’s attacks, but before I could sit down at my computer, the air was riven by the wailing of sirens and a procession of police cars and ambulances began streaming into the Jerusalem neighbourhood of East Talpiot (Armon Hanatziv), where I live. Instinctively, I turned on the television and the radio and also began scanning cyberspace to find out what was happening.
And what was happening was unnerving. Two Arab terrorists, armed with a gun and knives, had carried out an attack on the #78 bus which runs through the neighbourhood, leaving two dead and 22 wounded. This occurred just after the bus stop right across the road from my old apartment, thirty metres away from what used to be, till last year, my study window. In fact, if I hadn’t decided to postpone my weekly shopping at the neighbourhood supermarket till tomorrow, and write my blog today instead, I would have been on that bus.

And as if that wasn’t enough, in other Arab terrorist attacks today, an Arab employee of the Israeli Bezeq Communications Company carried out a deadly attack on a group of Jews waiting at a bus stop in Malchei Yisrael Street in Jerusalem, ramming his work vehicle into the bus stop, killing one and seriously wounding two more. He then got out of his car and proceeded to stab his victims.
You see the horror here? In the current climate, one tends to be wary of passing cars, but who would suspect a Bezeq van or its driver?

Nor was Jerusalem the only scene of Arab terrorism this morning. In two separate attacks in the town of Ra’anana, five people were wounded. One of them is said to be in critical condition.

At the time of writing this post, I still do not know the names of the victims and so I do not know yet if they include anyone I know.

I have always agreed with Albert Schweitzer, that there are two means of refuge from the sorrows of this world – music and cats. I have three cats. And this evening, I have choir practice – a rehearsal for this coming Friday’s lunchtime performance, in Haifa, of Leonard Bernstein’s Chichester Psalms, together with the Haifa Symphony Orchestra.

Only – I am almost afraid to leave the house.

But I will. Because if we shut ourselves up in our homes, the terrorists will have won.

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And Darkness Was Upon the Face of the Abyss

Tomorrow is Shabbat Bereshit, the first Shabbat after Sukkot, when we start all over again the annual cycle of weekly readings from the Torah. It is so called, because the first word in the entire Torah is Bereshit  (בראשית – “In the beginning”).  Bereshit is also the Hebrew name for the Book of Genesis.

Looking back on the events of the past week (see my last two posts), one might be forgiven for thinking someone was playing a cruel joke, on reading verse 2:
“And the earth was without form and void, and darkness was upon the face of the abyss”. (It sounds better in Hebrew, as the words usually translated as “without form and void”, are used in modern Hebrew to mean “utter chaos”.)

Besides the atrocities described in my two previous posts, not a day has gone by without some “Palestinian” terrorist attack – be it with knives, cars (turned into weapons to deliberately run down Israeli Jews)  or Molotov cocktails.

I feel as if my head is spinning, I am starting to lose count. Yesterday, having accepted, at the last minute, a lift home from Pisgat Zeev, instead of taking the Light Railway, I found myself caught in a traffic jam, only to discover, when I googled the news, searching for the reason, that there had been a terrorist attack on the Light Railway twenty minutes earlier. When we passed the train station, there were crowds of police and paramedics and bystanders. A 19-year-old “Palestinian” Arab from eastern Jerusalem had  stabbed a yeshiva student in the neck. The victim was seriously wounded.
The same day, there were three more stabbings by “Palestinian” terrorists, one in Kiryat Arba, one in Afula and one in Tel Aviv. Today, there was another stabbing in Kiryat Arba, in the very spot where yesterday’s terror attack took place. Afula, too, was witness today to a “repeat performance”, when a “Palestinian” woman tried to stab a security guard, but was fortunately shot before she could complete the attack.
And, again this morning, yet another of the sons of Ishmael  stabbed a yeshiva student (variously reported as aged 14, or 16) in Jerusalem’s Shmuel Hanavi neighbourhood. The terrorist was arrested by security forces – unlike the perpetrator of the attack in Kiryat Arba on Wednesday, who managed to escape into Hebron.

What I have described is just the tip of the iceberg.  As I said, I feel I am losing count. Suffice it to say that, since the events described in my last two posts, there have been dozens of terror attacks on Israelis – such as the near lynching of an Israeli woman driver  on her way to work on Wednesday. Rock-throwing “Palestinian” thugs, targeting Israeli vehicles near the Jewish community of Tekoa, close to Bethlehem, smashed the windscreen, surrounded her car, yanked the door open and tried to pull her out. She was then kicked and beaten. Miraculously, she managed to fight off her attackers, slam the car door shut and escape. Several other cars were also attacked during that incident.

The Arab village of Sur Baher, from where the attackers apparently came, is just across the main road from where I live, and is clearly visible from my living-room window.
I shudder to think what could happen if Israel were ever to relinquish control of the village, as they relinquished control, under the Oslo Accords, of the village of Beit  Jala. During the Second Intifada, “Palestinian” terrorists set up gun and mortar emplacements in the village and subjected the southern Jerusalem neighbourhood of Gilo to daily (and nightly) attacks.

Under the circumstances, I suppose it was only a matter of time before Israelis began to react violently. This morning, in Dimona, a 17-year-old Jewish youth  stabbed four Arabs,  in what is believed to be a revenge attack.
At least passers-by took care of the victims, unlike the Arab shopkeepers in Hagai Street in the Old City of Jerusalem, scene of the murder last week of Nehemiah Lavi and Aharon Benita , who, when the wounded Adele Benita begged for help, laughed at her, spat in her face, and blocked her path as she tried to escape and  seek assistance from the Police, the terrorist’s knife still embedded in her shoulder.

In the Book of Genesis, the darkness upon the face of the abyss is ended when God says “Let there be light”.
Who will banish the darkness for us?

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And So It Goes On

Those of you who have been following the comments section on my previous post will know already that last night, there was another fatal “Palestinian” terrorist attack  on a Jewish family that was making its way to the Western Wall to pray. The nineteen year old “Palestinian”  murderer (may he burn in hell) fell upon the Benita (Bennett) family with a knife, fatally wounding the father, 24-year-old Rabbi Aharon Benita and critically wounding his wife, 22-year-old Adele. He then turned his butcher’s knife on 41-year-old father of seven, Rabbi Nehemiah Lavi  (who, apparently, tried to come to the aid of the young family, since the Police seemed to be nowhere in sight)  and, after stabbing him, seized his gun and began shooting, wounding at least two other people, including the Benitas’ two-year-old toddler. The baby’s father, Rabbi Benita, and Rabbi Lavi, died of their wounds before they could be brought to the hospital and the young mother, who sustained multiple stab wounds to the chest and back, after fighting all night for her life, was this morning still in serious condition.
The piece of terrorist excrement, whose cowardly attack left a total of nine children fatherless, was eventually shot dead by security forces.

How did the BBC report all this online?

BBC headline

Seriously? One would think that Jerusalem was the attacker here and that the most important piece of information was the fact that a “Palestinian” was shot dead. No mention here that the “Palestinian” was the attacker and no mention that the two who were killed were Jews!

Al Jazeera came up with this:

AL Jazeera headline

One might be forgiven for thinking, from this, that the dead “Palestinian” and the two Israeli victims were all killed by the same attacker. Still, Al Jazeera is, after all, an Arab news outlet and, on the whole, I am inclined to rate the BBC’s headline the more disgusting of the two.

I should also mention that, as the events were unfolding here in Jerusalem last night, I was zapping between the various news stations available to me through my cable TV subscription. There was no mention whatsoever of the despicable attack on the BBC World Service, or on France 24 or on Fox News. I didn’t check out the other foreign language channels.

And when I awoke this morning shortly before 7 am, and immediately switched on the radio in order to hear if there was any news of Adele Benita (who, when I went to bed some six hours earlier, was still fighting for her life),  the first thing I heard was that in the small hours of the morning, a 15-year old Jewish boy had been stabbed in the chest and back by a “Palestinian” terrorist, near the Old City’s Damascus Gate.  The terrorist was shot dead by security forces.Since he was, apparently, running away from the scene of his crime when he was shot, no doubt the Bleeding Hearts of the Loony Left – not to mention the UN, Amnesty International, the UN Human Rights Commision etc. – will be baying for the blood of the Israeli security forces.
The teenage victim, fortunately, survived and was taken to Sha’arei Tzedek hospital where his condition is reported as stable.

Once again, I switched on the television to see if the foreign media considered this latest attack on Jews to be newsworthy.
Guess what – nothing. Zilch. Rien. Nada. Goor nicht as we say in Yiddish.

I tried googling “New York Times terror in Jerusalem”. The first relevant item carried the headline: “Israel Restricts Palestinian Access to Old City“.
Because that’s what’s important to the New York Times. Not the fact that “Palestinian” terrorists murdered two Jews who were on their way to pray at Judaism’s holiest site, during the festival of Succot (Tabernacles) and tried to murder three more, in two knife attacks within the space of less than eight hours. No, what’s important is the minor inconvenience to the “Palestinians” caused by Israel placing temporary restrictions on the entry of “Palestinians” in order to prevent further terrorist attacks and ensure that Jews can pray safely today and tomorrow, the last two days of Succot – the festival known in Jewish tradition as “The Season of Our Rejoicing”.

Only there will be precious little rejoicing for the Henkin, Lavi and Benita families this Simchat Torah.

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May God Avenge Their Blood

The international media had a field day yesterday, reporting over and over again, in graphic detail, the murder of at least ten (some sources give the number as thirteen) students at a community college in Oregon, by a gunman who (as has happened so often before in the US), simply went on the rampage.

Updates are still coming in, and every scrap of information, relevant or not, is being eagerly gathered by the Press. The (British) Telegraph, for example, while noting (understandably,  I suppose) that the murderer is half-British, apparently thinks its readers actually care that his mother, Lauren, is the second-oldest of four sisters or that his grandfather, Leo, “lives in a modest semi-detached property on a main road that leads north out of Preston”.
The Guardian (also British), seems to consider a description of the suspect’s own home – “an apartment in a small, nondescript block, located at the end of a cul de sac in a leafy outer suburb of Roseburg, with pleasant views of nearby hills” – to be somehow newsworthy. Or is The Guardian perhaps moving into the real estate business?

Israel TV also carried news of the Oregon shootings, taking time out from reporting the fatal drive-past shooting that very evening on the road between the Samaria communities of Elon Moreh and Itamar (where I have family) of a young Jewish couple, Eitam and Naama Henkin, who were attacked by “Palestinian” terrorists as they drove home with four of their six children, aged 9, 7, 4 and 4 months.
I switched channels to see if this was being reported by the BBC. Needless to say, the cowardly attack on a Jewish Israeli family was barely mentioned, although this is the third fatal drive-by shooting of Israeli civilians by so-called “Palestinians” this summer (and that’s without mentioning the Israelis murdered by being deliberately run down by “Palestinian” terrorist drivers).
The same was true of France 24 and Fox News.

Unlike the universal condemnation by the Israeli leadership of the murder of three members of the Al-Dawabsheh family in an arson attack apparently carried out by Jewish terrorists earlier this summer, the “Palestinian” leadership has refused to condemn last night’s terrorist attack, in which four children saw their parents gunned-down before their eyes and only by a miracle, escaped a similar fate. A Hamas spokesman called the despicable, cold-blooded murder “a heroic attack” and called for more “quality attacks”, while Mahmoud Abbas (Abu Mazen), with whose ruling Fatah party the group which claimed responsibility for the attack, the Abd el-Qader el-Husseini Brigade, is affiliated, has maintained a deafening silence.

And these are the people who are being touted by the EU and by the White House, as “partners for peace” with Israel.

Tell that to the orphaned children of Eitam and Naama Henkin H”YD (הי”ד – May God Avenge Their Blood).

Eitam Henkin

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It’s All About ME: The Gender Agenda, Identity Politics and the Tyranny of Political Correctness

The murder last month of a young girl at the Jerusalem Gay Pride Parade spawned an endless series of debates on the subject of LGBT rights – or perhaps, to be completely Politically Correct, I should say LGBTQ rights – from which one salient fact became blindingly obvious, namely, that large numbers of Israelis (and other nationalities too, no doubt) have no idea what is the difference between transsexual, transgender, transvestite – and trans fats, for that matter!

I’m not about to bore you all with a lengthy dissertation on the differences. Suffice it to say that “transgenderism” is “used as an inclusive umbrella term used to describe anyone who feels that the sex that was assigned to them at birth incompletely describes or fails to describe them.
See also the Wikipedia definition.
The key words in this debate are “Gender Identity” ie: “one’s personal experience of one’s own gender. This is generally described as one’s private sense of being a man or a woman, consisting primarily of the acceptance of membership into a category of people: male or female.”
In other words – it isn’t the genitalia you were born with that count, it’s what you feel inside. And if, like Bruce/Caitlyn Jenner, you happen to have been born with male genitalia but claim to have felt all your life that you were born in the wrong body and are really a woman, then it is your right, as a human being, to live as a woman.

But what does that mean, “to live as a woman”? Perhaps we need to redefine what “being a woman” means? If, as many people now believe, gender roles are defined by society, rather than by biology, is there any real meaning to being a transgender man or woman, without taking the final step and undergoing surgery? If the only “real” difference between men and women is the biological difference, and “real” women are those who have female genitalia and female chromosomes, then Bruce Jenner can dress up in female clothes , wear make-up and chill out with the girls and identify with women and as a woman as much as he likes, he will never, ever, be a “real” woman. And why should s/he need to be, anyway? If we stop assigning gender roles, men will be free to enjoy all the things that are still considered “womanly”, without having to identify as a woman. And all those little girls who used to be politely labelled “tomboys”, because they enjoyed dressing in boys’ clothes and playing with “boyish toys” and hanging out with the guys, but maybe felt that they had been born into the “wrong” body, because they identified with all the things that society had taught them were “boys’ stuff” and weren’t interested in the things girls were “supposed” to be interested in, wouldn’t have suffered years of “Gender Identity Disorder”, before the Politically Correct wisdom of today allowed them to be tagged as “transgender”.

Many leading feminists, however, among them, Germaine Greer and Gloria Steinem, are of the opinion that trans women are not real women and that “trans rights” and feminism are mutually exclusive. At the most basic level, their argument is that trans women choose to be women, whereas “real” women had no choice in the matter. On this level, even men who do choose to undergo surgery and become full-blown trans-sexuals, cannot be considered “real” women.
The Politically Correct establishment has chosen to ostracise, boycott, harass and threaten feminists who hold to this train of thought, calling it “hate speech”. And even those who dare to express support for Freedom of Speech on this matter are subjected to abuse and death threats.

Strangely enough, the Thought Police who are so ready to silence anyone who dares to utter any criticism of the Transgender Agenda, or question the “rights” of this “oppressed minority”, are in the forefront of those baying for the blood of Rachel Dolezal, who, although born white, identifies as black. They claim that she, a member of the oppressive white class, has committed “cultural appropriation” and fraud. (Incidentally, I have often heard opponents of Israel accuse us of this, when they claim Israel has “stolen Palestinian cuisine” by marketing falafel as the Israeli national dish, even though it originated in Egypt and is a fast food staple all over the Middle East!) In general, the Politically Correct theory is that it is  “cultural appropriation” when the dominant, oppressive class adopts elements of the culture of the oppressed class, but not when the subservient, oppressed class adopts the culture of the rulers.

So why does a man who all his life has “identified as a woman” and “felt he was born into the wrong body” have the right to “fully realise his true identity”, but a woman who has felt all her life that she was born into the wrong (white) body is committing some terrible kind of neo-colonialist race crime by identifying as black?

I know some people will reply that a white person, who has never suffered the discrimination and other indignities suffered by black people, can never understand what a black person goes through. As Guilaine Kinouani put it, “… allies interested in lecturing us on the experience from which their privileged existence has sheltered them need not apply. Allies with the ambition to lead our cause on our behalf need to take a seat and seriously reflect upon their personal motivation.”

By the PC definition,  what Rachel Dolezal did falls into the category of “cultural appropriation” because she was born into the privileged, oppressive ruling class, and not only has she adopted the culture of the oppressed class, but she has presumed to tell the genuinely oppressed class how to fight their battle and even to lead them.

But how is what Bruce/Caitlyn Jenner or any other trans woman has done any different? If we accept that Men are, for the most part, the ruling, oppressive class and Women are the oppressed, subservient class, then surely when a man  “identifies” as a woman, and adopts the gender roles culturally allocated by society to women, is this not just as much “cultural appropriation” as when a privileged white woman self-identifies as black? Why, then, is the one politically correct and the other politically incorrect?
Could it be – dare I say it – that, once again, it boils down to “the flavour of the day”, to whatever is “now trending”?

I will leave you with one final thought. Gender Identity Disorder or, as it is now known, Gender Dysphoria, is no longer classified as a mental illness. On the other hand, if  I were to say that I was born, by mistake, into a human body, that all my life, I have self-identified as a cat, that I like to curl up in a basket to sleep, that, instead of a shower, I like to lick myself clean, that for supper, I like nothing better than a bowl of milk and to pick the scraps off some leftover fish, that I love to prowl the neighbourhood by night, climbing over the rooftops etc., I am quite sure that the men in white coats would have me in a straitjacket before you could say “Jack Robinson” – and I could go whistle for my “human” rights to self-identify as I please.

So, there you have it. A man who identifies as a woman. A white who identifies as a black. A human who identifies as a cat. And yet, the first is hailed by the prevailing PC wisdom as entitled to do so as s/he is realising his/her human rights, the second is reviled as a fraud and a cultural thief and the third is considered to be a nutcase – sorry, I mean “mentally ill”. To use the term nutcase would be grossly Politically Incorrect.

Just saying…..

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Scorched Earth

I am filled with sadness, I am filled with anger. I feel as if the scorching temperatures (reaching 40 degrees Celsius in Jerusalem earlier this week) are but a mirror to the public mood.

Shira Banki, the 16-year-old girl who was stabbed by religious fanatic Yishai Schlissel at the Gay Pride Parade a week ago (see my last post), died on Sunday as a result of her wounds. A vigil in Tel Aviv that was supposed to be a show of unity in the face of fanaticism and terrorism, quickly turned into a politically-charged hate-fest against the political Right and the entire ultra-orthodox community, with the Left cynically using the tragic and senseless deaths of a young Jewish girl and an Arab toddler as a springboard to accuse Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu of being responsible for both deaths. Education Minister Naftali Bennett of the Bayit Yehudi (Jewish Home) party, who, as an orthodox Jew, has publicly stated his opposition to gay marriage but has NEVER incited against homosexuals, was invited to the vigil in Tel Aviv and then informed he was not welcome, unless he agreed to sign a statement promising to promote gay rights. As far as the Left goes, anyone who does not fully support all the demands of the LGBT community is guilty of incitement. They also decided to picket Bennett’s private residence.

As far as the horrifying murder of the Arab toddler is concerned, this too was an opportunity for the Left, who failed to win the elections in March, to attempt to bring down the government. In their book, anyone who supports the right of Jews to remain in Judaea and Samaria is guilty of incitement to arson and murder.
It is important to point out that, despite the almost universal condemnation of this despicable crime, both by the Israeli Jewish community and by the UN (which, for some strange reason, has failed to condemn similar terrorist crimes against Israeli Jews), and the administrative arrest (without trial) of Jewish right-wing extremists earlier this week, it is still not certain that it was, in fact, Jews who were responsible and it has been claimed that there are also indications pointing to the possibility that the crime was actually carried out by Arabs. It appears that the family which was targeted was involved in a blood feud with another family. It has also been remarked that it is strange that a group of Jews could have set fire to one house, right in the heart of an Arab village and then, without anyone in the village waking up, managed to paint slogans on the wall and set fire to another house.
I am keeping an open mind about this. I think it is a possibility that the crime was committed by other Arabs, who are now using it to frame Israel. But I also cannot deny the possibility that the murderers were, indeed, Israeli Jewish extremists.
Of one thing I am sure. If it should happen to turn out that the real criminals were Arabs, I would advise no-one  to hold their breath while waiting for an apology from the UN.

Nor is the extreme Right behaving any better. In the wake of the sharp condemnation by President Reuven Rivlin (who is not exactly known for left-wing views, to put it mildly) of the murder of the Arab toddler, Ali Dawabsheh, he found himself under attack for allegedly caring more about dead Arab children than dead Jewish children. A video (later found to have been uploaded by an American Jew) uploaded to the internet showed Rivlin and Netanyahu in Nazi uniforms, and the President has been receiving death threats.

And on Facebook, Twitter, Disqus  and across the global reaches of cyberspace, the internet keyboard warriors on both sides gave no quarter. A particularly sickening reaction to the stabbing of six participants at the Gay Pride Parade  was a Facebook post by one Gilad Kleiner, who publicly expressed both his delight over the stabbings and his disappointment that the victims were still alive. Arrested and questioned, he was later released on bail.  A couple of days later, when Shira died, he posted another message, expressing his joy at her death! Kleiner, who also expressed the wish that other “deviants” would die, and who is said to have a history of mental problems, has since been indicted for incitement to violence, but he is not the only one to have taken to social media to express similar sentiments. Bitter accusations of the most inflammatory – and defamatory – nature flew to and fro like arrows all week, with one side accusing the other of supporting bestial, unnatural practices, and insisting that sodomites deserve to be put to death, and the other side accusing anyone who failed to publicly support “full rights for gays” of complicity in the murder of Shira Banki, and demonstrating against them, holding up hands covered with fake blood. Among the so-called “accomplices to murder”, and “fundamentalist bigots”, they also included anyone who, while basically supporting gay rights, felt that it might have been better not to hold the Gay Pride Parade in Jerusalem, with its large religious population.

At the beginning of last week, Jews the world over marked the fast of Tisha b’Av, commemorating the destruction of both the First and Second Temples. Of the Second Temple, we are told that it was destroyed because of causeless hatred (שנאת חינם) between Jews. I listen to the tone of public debate now raging, to the burning hostility between the extremists of all camps and their contemptuous dismissal of all those in the middle who refuse to support extremism of any kind (“If you’re not with us, you’re against us”) and I wonder if causeless hatred is not about to destroy us again.

Meanwhile, the “Palestinians” continue trying to kill Jews. A few days ago, a young Jewish woman miraculously escaped death when a Molotov cocktail was thrown at her car in Jerusalem. And yesterday, three soldiers were mown down and injured (two of them very seriously) by a “Palestinian” driver who deliberately rammed his car into them.

And then there is the heat. The temperatures dropped slightly yesterday, but they’re on the rise again. The mercury is expected to hit 36 degrees today in Jerusalem, and to carry on rising over the weekend.
Tempers too, no doubt.

Heat wave.
Hate wave.

And I am filled with anger.
And I am filled with sadness.


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Festival of Hate

Today is Tu b’Av, popularly (though mistakenly) supposed to be the Jewish equivalent of St. Valentine’s Day. A love fest. This year, it has turned out to be a hate fest instead.

Yesterday afternoon, the local LGBT community held their annual Gay Pride Parade in Jerusalem, in the teeth of vociferous opposition from the city’s ultra-orthodox community, who held a counter-demonstration. An ultra-orthodox fanatic, Yishai Schlissel, released just three weeks ago after serving ten years in prison for stabbing three people at the Gay Pride Parade in 2005, and who evidently has not learned his lesson, somehow managed to evade the heavy police security cordon along the route of the parade, and stabbed six people – one of them, a fifteen year old girl who is said to be still in danger of her life.

There is no doubt about it – the Police screwed up, big time. Only two weeks ago, Schlissel was interviewed on an ultra-orthodox radio programme and it was clear from his words that he had no regrets and would repeat his hateful crimes given the slightest chance.  He should have been under close police surveillance and kept away, by any means, from the area of the parade.

Moreover, a brief perusal of Facebook, which, after an event like this, always brings out the keyboard warriors, turns up dozens of comments praising his actions. Yet on the other hand, there were also hundreds of condemnations – including the Mayor of Jerusalem, the Chief Rabbi of Jerusalem, Sephardi Chief Rabbi Yitzchak Yosef, Ashkenazi Chief Rabbi David Lau, Arye Deri (the leader of the ultra-orthodox party Shas),   the President of Israel, Reuven Rivlin, and Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, who called it “a loathsome hate crime” –  to name but a few. The attacker was arrested on the spot and will be tried. If convicted, he will be punished. Of that there is no doubt.

But, of course, the Israel-haters wasted no time in crawling out from under the wood-pile to claim that the attack proves that Israel is anti-democratic and hostile to gays – despite the fact that there are many more anti-gay hate crimes the United States, yet no-one claims that the USA is hostile to gays!

Here in Israel, the anti-religious crowd also used the opportunity to blame the entire religious community for the dastardly crime. I even heard someone on the radio (I was only listening with half an ear so I missed the name of the speaker) make the ridiculous claim that anyone who opposed gay marriage shared in the responsibility for the attack!

And as if that wasn’t enough, the Left is now lumping together everyone on the Right and accusing them of supporting the actions of the ultra-orthodox fanatics who think they are doing the work of God by “cleaning up the pollution”.

I myself identify with the political Right. But I also think Schlissel and his supporters are criminals – one might, justifiably, even call them terrorists – who have set themselves up to be judge, jury and executioner. They justify their actions on the premise that the Torah forbids homosexuality. They seem to have forgotten that the Torah also forbids murder and that the prohibition of murder was proclaimed first, on Mt. Sinai, in the presence of the entire nation.

And from anti-gay hate crimes to what appears to have been a racially-motivated hate crime. In the early hours of this morning, unknown individuals tossed Molotov cocktails into two houses in the Arab “Palestinian” village of Duma, setting them on fire. In the ensuing blaze, an eighteen-month-old toddler, Ali Dawabsheh, was burnt to death and his parents and four-year-old brother were critically injured. The local residents are claiming that the murderers (who were masked) were “settlers” (their term for every religious-looking Jew) and indeed, the fact that the words נקמה  (“Vengeance”) and יחי המלך המשיח  (“Long Live the King Messiah) were spray-painted on the walls would seem to point to a “Price Tag” atrocity. On the other hand, it has been pointed out that in the past, the “Palestinians” have not been above trying to blame “settlers” for acts carried out by their own people.

I try, as always, to keep an open mind but, much as I hate to believe that Jews could carry out such a heinous crime,  I very much fear that, as in the case of  Muhammed Abu-Khdeir, who was kidnapped and burnt alive by three Jewish terrorists last summer in revenge for the kidnapping and murder of three Jewish teenagers, this will indeed prove to be the case.  At any rate, the Israeli leadership seems to think so, and has had no hesitation in calling this a terror attack. Which it is.

As I said, I identify with the political Right. I believe with every fibre of my being that the whole Land of Israel belongs to the Jewish people. I also believe that whoever murdered this innocent baby is a vile, despicable scumbag, who, when caught, should be punished to the fullest extent of the law.

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