Sunday, December 27, 2015

27-Dec-15: Saturday's violence

Some background on two more Arab-on-Israeli attacks that marred the Sabbath day that ended last night.

IDF Square Jerusalem [Image Source: Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Commons]
In Jerusalem, at Kikar Zahal (IDF Square) close to the Old City's Jaffa Gate and a couple of minutes' walk from Safra Square, the compound where the municipality is headquartered, a Palestinian Arab aroused suspicions on the part of police officers who, in the words of Israel National News,
"approached him to investigate... At that point the terrorist whipped out a knife and tried to stab one of them, but the officers beat him to the draw and shot him, killing him at the site."
Haaretz adds that the would-be knife attacker "is mentally disabled" in the words of family members. It identifies him as
26-year-old Mussab Mahmoud Al-Razali from East Jerusalem. His uncle told Palestinian news agency WAFA that his nephew suffered from severe mental disabilities and even studied at the Nur Special Needs School.
The Huwara attack vehicle (via social media)
He attracted attention because "police noticed him following a pair of Jewish worshippers". Saturday morning is a time when thousands of Israeli Jews, as well as visitors, walk through Jaffa Gate to the Old City's Western Wall plaza. It's a route that gets heavy police attention because of the attraction it seems to hold for murder-minded jihadists.

Later in the day, a cluster of soldiers manning at a checkpoint near the Arab village of Huwara in Samaria came under vehicle-ramming attack. One, a young serviceperson of 20, was injured in the attack and taken to hospital with a suspected broken leg. Others opened fired and hit the Palestinian Arab attacker who later died of his injuries. Haaretz says his name is Maher al-Jabi, a male of 56.

News consumers who rely on the Arab news media will get the story more or less back-to-front as the headlines of two reports typical of the genre ["Palestinian dies from injuries in car ramming near Nablus" - Al Bawaba; "Another Palestinian shot dead by Israelis at Nablus checkpoint" - Press TV Iran] make clear. Ditto The Columbus Despatch which spins a syndicated Associated Press report with its own creative headline ["2 Palestinians killed in clashes"]

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