Israel News for October 10, 2016

Terror in Jerusalem
A terrorist opened fire near a Jerusalem police station on Ammunition Hill yesterday and then continued shooting at people as he fled from police toward the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood of Jerusalem. He killed a police officer and a 60 year old woman and wounded six others before being killed by police.

The terrorist was a 39 year old resident of the East Jerusalem neighborhood of Silwan and an Israeli citizen. He had been arrested several times and served jail time in the past, and was scheduled to return to jail on the day of the attack to serve a four month sentence for hitting a police officer. Hamas claimed the terrorist as “one of ours” and circulate a photo of him wearing a Hamas scarf while holding a picture of Hamas’s spiritual leader Sheikh Ahmed Yassin. His daughter praised her father’s actions in a video released shortly after the attack.

There were celebrations in the aftermath of the attack in the Gaza Strip and the East Jerusalem neighborhood of Beit Hanina, where candy and baklava was distributed to people on the street. Palestinian media outlets reported that those handing out the sweets were the terrorist’s own family members, who own a sweetshop in the Old City of Jerusalem.  

Security forces clashed with violent demonstrators throughout East Jerusalem and arrested dozens of terror suspects.

The police officer killed in the attack was 29 year old First Sergeant Yossi Kirma from Mivaseret Zion, who served in a special anti-terror unit and received a decoration for preventing a stabbing attack last year. He is survived by his wife, his parents and two siblings.

The woman killed was Levana Malihi, 60, a grandmother and former longtime employee of the Knesset who retired in 2010. She is survived by her husband, three children and six grandchildren.

Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat said in the aftermath of the attack, “We will not bow. We will continue to live our lives, despite the uncompromising war on terror and wild incitement. I praise our security forces that acted immediately, got to the terrorist and neutralized him. I want to congratulate them for the holy work they perform year-round, especially during the holiday period.”

The U.S. State Department condemned the attack saying, “The United States condemns in the strongest possible terms the terrorist attack that took place today in Jerusalem, which resulted in the death of two Israelis and injured several others. We extend our deepest condolences to the families of those killed and our hopes for a quick and full recovery for those wounded. There is absolutely no justification for the taking of innocent lives. We also condemn the statements glorifying this reprehensible and cowardly attack.”

For further reading click here.

Dimona Renaming
PM Netanyahu has announced that he will rename the Dimona nuclear reactor in memory of Shimon Peres. He said, “Shimon Peres worked hard to establish this important facility, a facility which has been very important for Israel’s security for generations. I believe that it is proper and fitting to name the facility after him.”

For further reading click here.

Ethiopian Aliyah Resumes
After years of waiting to come to Israel, the 9,000 Falash Mura Jews of Ethiopia have began their Aliyah. The first 63 immigrants arrived in Israel yesterday, and will be followed by about 100 each month.

The Falash Mura claim links to descendants of Jews who converted to Christianity generations ago but now seek to return to Judaism. The Interior Ministry accepts them as immigrants under the Law of Return, although they are not recognized as Jewish by the rabbinate and will have to convert to Judaism in Israel.

Over 135,000 Jews of Ethiopian descent currently live in Israel.

For further reading click here.

Disarmingly Powerful
This isn’t directly Israel related but it is such an unusually powerful Holocaust related video that we thought we should share it with you. The video is of an American reality TV show in 1953 called “This Is Your Life”, and the star of the episode is a young Holocaust survivor. It brings home the reality of the Holocaust in a disarmingly casual way that results in an extremely powerful experience.

To watch the video click here.