Published On: Mon, Jan 9th, 2017

Don’t Blame IDF Soldiers for Not Reacting to Sunday’s Terrorist Attack

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People should stop criticizing the Israeli soldiers who were at the scene of yesterday’s terrorist attack in Jerusalem. Many in the Israeli media have been asking why the soldiers, who were from the IDF officer candidate school and were armed, did not open fire on the terrorist.

On Sunday afternoon, an Arab truck driver deliberately ran over a group of Israeli soldiers who were on a tour of the Armon Hanatziv Promenade located on a hilltop just south of Jerusalem’s Old City. After running them over, the driver began to back up the truck to kill more people when a tour guide on the scene opened fire killing the terrorist.

Four people were murdered and 15 were injured in the terrorist attack.

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So why are people criticizing the soldiers who were there? Because all Israeli soldiers are trained to respond with their weapons in any circumstances.

Well here is why these critics are wrong and should just shut up already.

1 – The soldiers were not in a combat zone on alert for any possible attack. They were in a public place, off duty, taking part in a tour of the city.

2 – When it happened, there were no explosions and no gun fire. If there had been then they certainly would have reacted differently. Like any normal person in such a situation, the soldiers were taken by surprise and would have needed a few moments to fully grasp the reality of what was happening.

3 – Unlike other terrorist attacks where knives and guns were used, this terrorist used a truck. When he first ran over the people, there was no way for anyone to know that this was a terrorist attack. They had no idea who the driver was. For all they knew, he lost control of the truck or had dropped dead of a heart attack.

It was not until he tried to back up over the people that it became clear that this was an intentional terrorist attack. And the tour guide who opened fire was in a position to see what was happening. When you see the footage of the attack it is clear that most of the soldiers there could not have seen this.

4 – In an attack once carried out at a train stop for the Jerusalem light rail, a combat officer ran from the scene. He was later court martialed and stripped of his rank. Israeli commentators have been citing this incident as an example as to why the soldiers who were at the scene of yesterday’s attack should also be disciplined.

But again there is no analogy here. In the attack at the train stop the terrorist was clearly armed and had attacked several people. The IDF officer was armed and fled as the terrorist continued on his rampage. But in yesterday’s attack no soldiers fled the scene, it ended very quickly, and the terrorist was in a truck.

So all of you people out there who always criticize the soldiers when something like this happens – you owe them an apology.

Terror attack in Jerusalem Photo Gil Yohanan

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