I had no intention of writing now, before Shabbat. But I must. Because I have no confidence that the international news agencies will put this out. And people must know:
Last night, a young couple from Neria was driving between Itamar and Elon Moreh, in Samaria, with four of their children, when they were attacked by drive-by terrorists, and killed.
Their children, ages four months, and four, seven and nine years, were not physically injured in the shooting. But I shuddered at the irony of reading reports that said, “The children were unhurt.” Unhurt?? Their parents were killed before their eyes.
Security officials are speculating that the terrorists may simply not have seen the children in the back seat, which is why they are still alive.
The pain of absorbing this sort of information makes it difficult to breathe.
The identity of the parents caused a jolt: They were Rabbi Eitem and Naama Henkin. Henkin is a well known and greatly respected name here in Israel. Eitem’s mother is Rabbanit Chana Henkin, founder of the Nishmat Institute for Advanced Jewish Studies for Women in Jerusalem; his father is Rabbi Yehuda Henkin, well known posek (decisor in Jewish law).
It is a phenomenon that I cannot comprehend: time and again the people who suffer in these attacks are of the very finest.
The Henkins have two other children who were – blessedly – not with them. There are six orphans.
The terrorists have not yet been caught as I write. Four battalions of the IDF have been called up to track them. They will be caught.
The cries of anguish, and fury, have gone up in Israel and the question is what will be done next. Security procedures have been tightened recently in the face of increasing Arab violence. But it is not enough yet. Not nearly enough. We are at war, though some do not see it. And the question is how we will proceed. This becomes a topic, then, which I will come back to after the holidays.
Prime Minister Netanyahu, in New York after his speech to the UN, blames PA incitement – and particular the incitement ongoing on the Temple Mount. The message is being put out that Jews are the enemy, to be defended against. It creates a climate of obscene hatred. PA incitement? Incitement by Abbas at the podium of the UN this week.
An arm of Fatah – Abbas’s Fatah – known as the Martyr Abdul-Qader al-Husseini Brigades, associated with the Al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades, which is Fatah, claimed responsibility for the attack.
“Abu al-Walid, a spokesperson for the Martyr Abdul-Qader al-Husseini Brigades, told the Lebanese Al-Akhbar in an interview last August during the war that Iran plays a direct role in funding and training his terrorist organization.
“’There is always contact between the Palestinian resistance and Hezbollah and Iran,’ he said. ‘This is no longer a secret.’ (Emphasis added)
“’These contacts take different forms, such as training, preparation, equipment, logistical support and developing the resistance and its weapons.’”
Senior Fatah official Azzam al-Ahmed praised the attack.
Abbas has remained mum, as he usually does in these situations. No expressions of horror. No condolences. But wait, he will be told by advisors that his silence does not look good and he will mumble something insincere.
We are at war. And soon there will come the Quartet, telling the world that this can be solved via a “two-state solution.”
Netanyahu’s speech at the UN was wonderful. He gets it. And now we will see have he translates this into policy. Policy that would require us to stand alone in the world, as indeed we do now in any event.
I mentioned that the holiday of Simchat Torah begins Sunday night. This Dry Bones by Yaakov Kirschen exquisitely reflects our truth. May we have the wisdom to recognize it:
May there be peace for Shabbat, and may our people know no more pain.
© Arlene Kushner. This material is produced by Arlene Kushner, functioning as an independent journalist. Permission is granted for it to be reproduced only with proper attribution.
If it is reproduced and emphasis is added, the fact that it has been added must be noted.