Terror Wave Has Israelis Afraid to Go About Daily Business
Thursday’s cross-country stabbing attacks have left Israelis apprehensive about conducting their daily routines, Israel’s Channel 2 reported.
Before Thursday, the recent spate of Palestinian terror had been concentrated in and around Jerusalem. Its extension to other locations — including Tel Aviv, Kiryat Arba, Kiryat Gat and Afula — has now left Israelis throughout the country wary of crowded areas, according to the report.
Moshe, a bus driver, said he “looks a thousand times at every person who gets on the bus — how he looks, if there’s something on his body, if he’s carrying something,” for fear the passenger could be a potential terrorist. He also said he now carries tear gas as a precaution.
Moshe is not alone, according to Channel 2, which reported that in the last week, there has been a surge in sales of tear gas and other means of self-defense.
Amit Gadian, who sells tasers, said demand for his products has soared. “They do not trust anyone,” he said. “They feel the country is falling apart, that there is no sense of security, and that if they do not protect themselves, no one will do it for them.”
Gadian’s comments appear to capture the general mood of the public, Channel 2 said. The website “Rikushet” reported a 400% increase in the purchase of self-defense products, mostly in Jerusalem.
Israeli schoolchildren have also been affected by the atmosphere. A seventh-grader wrote to Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat to express her fears.
“I’m contacting you in relation to the terrorist attacks due to which children can’t even leave their homes,” she wrote. “Because they are afraid someone will stab them; because every day in our beautiful city, innocent people on their way to work or taking their kids on an outing or shopping or simply taking a walk are being stabbed. Do they deserve to die? No, they do not deserve to die. This is our land, and terrorists must not be allowed to roam free and kill people. That isn’t rational.”
Yehudit Cohen, a Jerusalem kindergarten teacher, expressed a similar sentiment. “We are far more fearful and cautious,” she said. “We make sure that everything is closed and locked; we look out the window to make sure we don’t see any unfamiliar faces before opening our doors.”