July 19, 2024
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Security Officials: Terrorism Wave Could Continue for Months

The double murder of Na’ama and Eitam Henkin on Oct. 1 marked the start of the current wave of terrorism that has seen nearly daily terrorist stabbings, shootings or car-ramming attacks. The Israeli security establishment is still refusing to term these attacks an “intifada,” but the official position is that they are not likely to end soon and could continue for several more months.

Figures from the defense branches indicate that in this time, 156 Palestinians and Arab Israelis have committed 140 terrorist attacks, 48 of them within the Green Line, with the remaining 92 in Judea and Samaria.

Of the 48 attacks within the Green Line, 22 were carried out by Palestinians, while holders of Israeli identity cards (Israeli-Arab citizens and residents of east Jerusalem) were responsible for the remaining 26. The youngest terrorist was a 12-year-old boy, and the oldest was a 72-year-old woman.

Since the wave of terrorist incidents began, 127 Palestinians and Israeli Arabs have been killed: 91 in Judea and Samaria and 20 in the Gaza Strip. Seventy-two of those killed were terrorists in Judea and Samaria neutralized while perpetrating an attack; 16 held Israeli identity cards, and the rest were rioters and other casualties.

However, there appears to be light at the end of the tunnel. The number of Palestinians wounded every week has dropped from more than 300 at the start of the current terrorism wave to around 50, and as of Thursday night, this week’s tally of Palestinians wounded stood at only 28. The drop in the number of Palestinian wounded can be attributed both to the maturity and restraint exhibited by Israeli security forces, and to the falling number of participants in riots and other disturbances, which has steadily declined over the past few weeks. When the wave began in October, about 40 riots would break out on Fridays, but these past few weeks the number has dropped to riots in five or six locations only.

Despite the sense that terrorism is striking daily, the Israel Defense Forces, the Israel Police, the Coordinator for Government Activities in the Territories, and even the Palestinian Authority have thus far managed to ensure that things do not slip out of control entirely.

The truly disturbing numbers from the security establishment pertain to Jewish terrorism. Since October, COGAT has confirmed 120 cases of racist crimes committed by Jews, in which 17 Palestinians were wounded. Five Palestinian homes and 15 Palestinian cars were damaged in acts of vandalism. These numbers are comparable to what the security establishment usually sees over the course of an entire year.

By Lilach Shoval

Israel Hayom

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