Australia/Israel & Jewish Affairs Council

Brave act of "resistance" praised – attack on a 9-year-old Israeli girl

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A nine-year-old Israeli girl, Noam Glick, was reportedly stabbed in the chest on Saturday night while playing outside her home in Psagot, a West Bank settlement southeast of Ramallah, in what Israeli authorities suspect was an attack by a Palestinian who had broken into the settlement from a nearby village. (Initial reports that the girl was shot proved to be incorrect.) The girl is reportedly in a stable condition at a Jerusalem hospital. Israel's Defence Forces said the incident was ''being investigated as a possible terrorist attack''.

This latest attack follows two other attacks about three weeks ago - the kidnapping and killing of soldier Tomer Hazan by a Palestinian in Qalqilyah and the shooting of 20-year-old IDF soldier Gavriel Kobi in Hebron.

Disturbingly, Fatah's official Facebook page appears to have praised the stabbing - though under the false impression that it was a shooting supposedly committed by the same individual that shot Kobi. Palestinian Media Watch reported, "Writing on behalf of Fatah, the page administrator praised ‘the sniper of Palestine' who began his work in Hebron (the shooting of the soldier), passed through El-Bireh (the shooting of the girl), and - according to the Fatah Facebook page administrator - will continue in more places in the future'". A translation of the posting on the Fatah Facebook page reportedly stated:

"The sniper of Palestine was here. He saluted Hebron, and rested in El-Bireh. He left the signature of [real] men in different parts of the homeland. He saluted and left, and moved on to a different place, with a new signature, as he tells the stories of those who love the homeland."

In a meeting with Israeli Knesset members, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas later issued a somewhat ambiguous condemnation of the incident - mentioning it along with Palestinians that have been killed, saying: "Two days ago a girl was shot or stabbed. That is not the topic of discussion for today. Four Palestinians were killed in Kalandiya, too... We should all condemn murder and bloodshed of innocents."

Meanwhile Hamas' website Al-Qassam also reported on the attack by a "resistance fighter" without ever mentioning that the "settler" shot was a nine-year-old girl. It stated:

"A Jewish female settlers was seriously wounded on Saturday in a possible sniper attack in Psagot settlement to the northeast of Ramallah city, the Israeli police claimed. The Israeli police are still investigating all options, including the possibility that the Psagot settlement was infiltrated by a Palestinian resistance fighter, according to different media reports. The Israeli settler was shot outside her dwelling and taken to an Israeli hospital in occupied Jerusalem. Israelis claim she is in critical condition, although media pictures of her show otherwise..."

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu condemned the stabbing in Psagot as "a heinous attack" which he blamed on Palestinian incitement. Netanyahu said at the start of Sunday's cabinet briefing:

"I must say that the Palestinian Authority cannot shirk its responsibility for these kinds of incidents as long as incitement there continues... The murderers must understand that this won't help them."

Despite a long period of relative calm, Israeli officials and military observers are concerned that tensions in the West Bank could escalate into an intifada. Former IDF Central Command chief Gadi Shamni told Army Radio:

"The events of the past month may lead to an escalation in the West Bank... It's very difficult to determine if this is the start of an intifada... However, we have here the evidence of three separate events. We need to look at them. They may not be related to each other, but I have no doubt that once events such as these occur, this can encourage all sorts of people who might not have acted, to act."

Sharyn Mittelman


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