Three women and one man were killed in a car-ramming and knife attack near a shopping center in the southern Israel city of Beersheva on Tuesday afternoon. The terrorist who perpetrated the attack was a local Bedouin man and an avid apostle of ISIS ideology.
According to initial investigations, the terrorist came to a gas station with a knife in his hand. There he stabbed a woman. He later drove to a nearby shopping center where he rammed his vehicle into a cyclist, immediately after which he got out and stabbed several passersby.
An armed bus driver who was at the scene of the crime managed to neutralize the terrorist, who was later pronounced dead at the scene.
תיעוד מזירת האירוע בבאר שבע: המפגע אוחז בסכין בידו ומתהלך על הכביש. גוברת ההערכה שמדובר בפיגוע pic.twitter.com/XmdgEWIgl0
— החדשות – N12 (@N12News) March 22, 2022
The perpetrator was identified as an Arab Israeli citizen from the Bedouin town of Hura. In the past he was a teacher at a local school, where he enthusiastically encouraged students and their parents in the ways of the Islamic State.
He had been jailed for his incitement to violence and reported efforts to travel to Syria to join ISIS. At the time, prosecutors warned that the man was a ticking time bomb, but he was sentenced to only a five-year jail term, which recently ended, granting the terrorist the opportunity to finally act on his convictions.
The victims of his heinous crime are as follows:
- Doris Yachbas, 49, from Moshav Gilat. She leaves behind her husband and three children.
- Laura Yitzhak, 43. She was stabbed and killed at the gas station. She leaves behind her husband and three children.
- Menachem Yehezkel, 67, from Be’er Sheva.
- Rabbi Moshe Kravitzky, one of Chabad-Lubavitch’s envoys in Be’er Sheva. Rabbi Kravitzky ran a synagogue in the city and was also in charge of a soup kitchen that provided food to many elderly and poor people every day.
In all, 10 Israeli children lost their parents in this one horrific event.
Prime Minister Naftali Bennett sent his condolences to the families of the victims. He wrote on Twitter: “I am praying for the injured, the civilians who shot the terrorist showed courage and prevented further casualties. We will act with all severity against the terrorists. We will hunt them down and reach all of their collaborators.”
Former Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu also expressed his condolences to the victims: “I would like to offer my heartfelt condolences to the families of those who died in the horrific attack in Beersheva yesterday: the late Menachem Yechezkel, the late Rabbi Moshe Kravitzky, the late Laura Yitzhak and the late Doris Yachbas. We all pray for the welfare of the wounded. On behalf of all citizens of Israel, I would like to extend a hug to families at this difficult time. May the memory of those murdered be blessed and remain in our hearts forever.”
אני מבקש לשלוח תנחומים מעומק ליבי למשפחות הנרצחים בפיגוע הנורא אתמול בבאר שבע: מנחם יחזקאל ז״ל, הרב משה קרביצקי ז״ל, לורה יצחק ז״ל ודוריס יחבס ז״ל. כולנו מתפללים לשלום הפצועים. בשם כל אזרחי ישראל אני מבקש לחבק את המשפחות בשעה קשה זו. יהי זכר הנרצחים ברוך ונצור בליבנו תמיד. pic.twitter.com/D70aX4T9G2
— Benjamin Netanyahu (@netanyahu) March 23, 2022
Netanyahu went on to criticize the current government’s strategy, claiming it is not bringing security back to the Negev. “You must avoid all political motives,” he said, referring to the coalition partnership with the Islamist party Ra’am, which represents the Bedouin electorate.
Arab parties condemn attack, while Palestinians celebrate
The Arab parties in the Knesset also condemned the terrorist attack this time around. Reaching on Facebook, the coalition party Ra’am wrote that it “condemns the criminal attack in Beersheva and offers its condolences to the families of those killed and wishes the injured a full recovery. The Arab citizens of the state are law-abiding and condemn any element that uses violence against other citizens. Ra’am calls on all citizens to uphold the common and fragile fabric of life, take responsibility and promote tolerant dialogue at this difficult time.”
The head of the Joint Arab List, Ayman Odeh, also condemned the attack: “I was shocked when I read about the murderous incident in Beersheva. Violence is not our style and we must condemn it with all our might. My condolences go out to the families of those who died at this difficult time and I send my best wishes to those injured.”
But the reaction was quite the opposite in the Gaza Strip, where Hamas celebrated the slaughter of four Israeli civilians by passing out sweets to the public.
Palestinians in Gaza celebrating the murder of four innocent Israelis by handing out sweets to bystanders.
Utterly disgusting and repulsive! pic.twitter.com/h3RpvRDMKy
— Yaki Lopez (@YakiLopez) March 22, 2022
The Palestinians bemoan “innocent” people being unfairly imprisoned, but then turn around and cheer such attacks, unaware or unconcerned that in so doing they are helping make the case for administrative detention and imprisonment of Israel’s nationalistic foes. People like the man who perpetrated the Beersheva attack simply must be jailed, because if they aren’t, or are released prematurely, other people will die.