The 17-year-old victim of a stabbing attack in Jerusalem on Saturday afternoon is a recent US immigrant to Israel, who says the incident will not deter him from joining the Israel Defense Forces.
The teen, who left his ultra-Orthodox family in Brooklyn for Israel just over a month ago, told the Ynet news website he hopes to enlist in the IDF’s top commando unit, Sayeret Matkal.
“I was stabbed, but I’ll still enlist in the army and give it my all,” he said. “I’m not afraid of anything.”
The teen said that he and a friend were surrounded by dozens of Arab youths as they returned from the Western Wall on Saturday afternoon.
The youths were taunting them, and two of them had knives drawn, he said.
“It seemed like they wanted to kill us,” he said. “I didn’t see them come at me, and I only realized I had been stabbed when I saw blood and them running away.”
His friend managed to escape and alert nearby police officers. The wounded youth was taken to Hadassah University Hospital on Mount Scopus for treatment for back wounds.
Security forces launched a manhunt for the assailants, and hours later police announced the detention of two minors from East Jerusalem who matched the descriptions of the attackers. They were handed over for interrogation.
Both suspects are 15 years old, according to Hebrew language reports.
The attack — the latest in a months-long wave of deadly Palestinian car-rammings, stabbings and shootings — came three days after an Israeli man was seriously wounded in a stabbing attack in the West Bank.