This post was contributed by CAMERA Boston Intern, Chaiel Schaffel.
The CAMERA on Campus team was deeply saddened to learn of yet another terror attack perpetrated against innocent civilians in Israel today. The attack occurred in Tel-Aviv this morning, when a 23-year-old Palestinian Arab named Hamza Matrouk began stabbing commuters on bus #40 travelling through Tel-Aviv. The terrorist first targeted the bus driver, and then began an assault on the commuters. After the bus stopped, Matrouk started to attack passersby on the street, pursuing and stabbing at least three more.
Accounts of the total number wounded varies between 12 and 17. Matrouk’s actions are the first major terror event in Israel since a spate of terrorism rocked the country this past fall. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu blamed the stabbing on media incitement by the Palestinian Authority, reporting that “The terrorist attack in Tel Aviv is the direct result of the poisonous incitement being disseminated by the Palestinian Authority against the Jews and their state,” according to the Prime Minister’s Media Adviser.
The PA remains notably silent on the assault, (though Palestinian cartoons praising the attack were published a mere two hours after it took place) but has a history of perpetrating hate speech against Israel and the West. For example, after the November 18th synagogue attacks in Har Nof, which killed four, the Fatah main Facebook page issued the following statement: “I’m coming towards you, my enemy, We’re going down from every house with cleavers and knives, With grenades we announced a popular war. I swear, you won’t escape, my enemy.”
A rash of anti-Jewish and anti-Israel terrorism has exploded onto the world stage in recent months, including an early January attack on a Kosher upermarket in France that dominated world headlines and sent the French government scurrying to reassure its Jewish citizens. In any case, these most recent attacks add weight to the growing concern over anti-Israel sentiment, and global terrorist activity as a whole.