The Times of Israel liveblogged Sunday’s events as they unfolded.
Dizengoff shooter likely hiding, may have killed himself
Police and the Shin Bet security service continue the manhunt for Nashat Milhem, the terrorist who killed two people in an attack on Tel Aviv’s Dizengoff Street on Friday.
Since Milhem’s name and photo were published yesterday evening, police received hundreds of calls from citizens claiming to have information on Milhem or to have seen him.
Security officials say that Milhem may still be in the center of the country. They believe he is hiding, aware of the manhunt.
Another possibility is that Mihem committed suicide after the attack.
A security official, asked whether the shooter may have left Israel and entered the West Bank, told the Hebrew language newspaper Maariv: “I wish this was the case. It would distance him from civilian areas and also the chance of catching him in the [Palestinian] territories is higher.”
Shaked hopes Duma trial will be ‘just, fair’
Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked says she hopes the trial of suspects in a Jewish terror attack that killed a Palestinian family will be “just” and “fair.”
“As justice minister, I give my support to the legal system, and hope there will be a just and fair trial. Let’s let the legal authorities do their jobs,” Shaked says. She was speaking ahead of the weekly government meeting.
Settler booklet has ‘instructions’ to harm Arabs, destroy property
Documents confiscated from radical settlers by security officials show that the settlers believe the State of Israel has no right to exist and do not feel obligated by “the rules of the game,” as they call them.
According to Israel Radio, one of the documents was titled “The Evil Kingdom – operative instructions for activists.” It is attributed to one Moshe Orbach, who is standing trial for inciting to mutiny.
The pamphlet details ways of harming Arabs living in the West Bank and destroying their property, like setting mosques and cars on fire.
The radical group, known as “Hilltop Youth,” numbers 30-40 activists, aged 15 to 24. About half of the members are minors.
Most members of the group live in outposts in the Binyamin region of the West Bank.
IS flag flies from Tel Aviv building
Residents of a building in Recanati Street in northern Tel Aviv found flags with Islamic State typography flying from the building’s top floor over the weekend.
The residents filed a complaint with the police, Hebrew-language website Ynet reported.
Woman wounded in attack, terrorist shot
At least one woman was moderately wounded in a shooting attack in Hebron at the Cave of the Patriarchs.
The terrorist was shot. His condition is unclear.
Differing reports on whether terrorist was shot or fled
Israeli media outlets initially said the terrorist who shot a woman in Hebron, near the Tomb of the Patriarchs, was shot by security forces.
Recent reports suggest that the shooter was a sniper who was positioned on the roof of one of the buildings nearby and managed to escape.
Security forces are on a hunt for the sniper.
Wounded woman taken to Shaare Zedek hospital in Jerusalem
The woman wounded in a shooting terror attack in Hebron this afternoon is 19 years old.
She was shot in her pelvis and is being evacuated to Shaare Zedek Hospital in Jerusalem.
Paramedic recounts evacuation of soldier
Magen David Adom paramedic Hanoch Selinger speaks to Maariv minutes after the terror attack in Hebron.
“When we got to the scene we saw a young woman, about 19, fully conscious and being treated by a military medical unit that was near the site of the attack. She suffered a penetrative bullet wound to her lower body. We put her in an ambulance and while we were evacuating her gave her fluids, bandaged her wounds and administered medications,” Selinger says.
Book removed from schools is now best seller
Dorit Rabinyan’s novel, “Gader Haya,” or “Borderlife,” recently excluded from the reading curriculum for Israeli high schools for describing “immoral relations” between a Jewish woman and an Arab man, is leading sales in local book stores following the controversy.
The book was taken off the list of books to be taught while “My Michael,” a novel by Amos Oz published in 1968 and which features a prominent erotic scene between a Jewish woman and an Arab man, remains. Oz’s novel has been taught in schools since the early 1990s.
Woman hurt in Hebron shooting attack is a soldier
It has been cleared for publication that the victim of a shooting attack this afternoon by a sniper in Hebron is a soldier.
She is being treated in a hospital in Jerusalem.
Hebrew U. professor confirmed as PM’s adviser
The appointment of Professor Avi Simhon to the position of head of the National Council of Economics and economic adviser to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was approved by the government, Army Radio reports.
Minister of the Negev, Galilee and the Periphery Aryeh Deri avoided the vote to confirm Simhon, over comments the professor made in the past.
Simhon, a Hebrew University economics professor, has in the past made comments critical of couples who have more children than they can financially support. His criticism was understood as directed mainly at the ultra-Orthodox sector.
Settler council ‘commends’ justice system
The Yesha Council, which represents West Bank settlers, “commends the Israeli justice system on its indictment of the Duma murder suspects,” the council says in a statement.
“It is now clear that these acts were perpetrated by a fringe group of anarchists bent on destroying the State of Israel and the freedom and justice that it represents. The Yesha Council condemns these heinous acts of unadulterated murder and will continue to work together with security forces to ensure a peaceful future for all the residents of Judea and Samaria,” the statement concludes.
Clip of ambulance evacuating Hebron terror victim
Watch footage of woman evacuated from Hebron terror scene.
Dawabsha grandfather urges new intifada
Hussein Dawabsha says “those who burned my family should themselves be burned,” speaking to Hebrew language paper NRG.
His daughter, son-in-law and grandson were murdered in a Jewish terror attack when their home was firebombed on July 31.
Ahmed, a boy, survives.
Seeing the photo of suspect Amiram Ben Uliel, Dawabsha says he “does not believe in the Israeli courts. There is no law nor justice in Israel. It’s one big show,” he says.
Sitting at home, not far from the torched house of his daughter and her family, Dawabsha predicts: “They’ll probably say that they’re crazy, like they said about the killers of Muhammad Abu Khdeir. Nothing will happen. The Israeli court system, the State of Israel is a dark country. They will probably decide to put them in prison for several years and then release them. Instead of killing them like they killed my boy and my grandson.”
Israel has no capital punishment. Abu Khdeir was a teen from East Jerusalem who was kidnapped and burned alive in mid 2015.
Dawabsha praises the young terrorists carrying out car-rammings and stabbing attacks.
He urges attackers: “Only an intifada will avenge the death of the Dawabsha family. They should continue with more attacks, having faith in Allah. Only in this way we will achieve our rights.”
Thousands at funerals of Tel Aviv terror victims
Thousands of people attend the funerals of Alon Bakal and Shimon Ruimi.
Bakal is being interred at the cemetery in Karmiel, in northern Israel, while Ruimi’s funeral takes place in Ofakim in the south, not far from the Gaza border.
“We are here, broken to pieces, and you are up there with your wide soul. Aloni, Aloni, we will always love you,” Bakal’s father, David, eulogizes.
“How can one write a goodbye letter to a boy still not 27? What words can dad have for you? What a great mind you had! You told me: ‘We’ll reach a goal, then look for a new goal.’ What giving you had in you, you collected foodstuffs for Holocaust survivors and yet wanted [to contribute] more. Everybody knew you’ll make it far. In your first class in college the lecturer said – we have a go-getter here. You loved people, loved your country. You were like a king,” David says.
His mother, Nitza, says: “We had a child. He is no more. Alon, beloved boy, my prince. I always carry with me a heavy burden, but this pain I will never be able to bear.”
Condition of victim from Tel Aviv attack improves
One of the victims of Friday’s terror attack in Tel Aviv has improved significantly, officials at the Ichilov Medical Center are saying.
The man, wounded in his head, has come to and is now breathing without assistance.
Hotovely hails arrival of Egyptian ambassador
Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely received the Egyptian Ambassador, Hazam Hairat, and wished him success on his job.
“I am certain his arrival will be another landmark in strengthening ties with Egypt in light of regional challenges,” the deputy foreign minister said, according to NRG.
Stabbing attack reported in Jerusalem
A person was wounded in a stabbing attack on Jerusalem’s Barazani Street, in the Armon Hanatziv neighborhood. Magen David Adom paramedics are on their way to the scene.
Attacker fled to Arab neighborhood of Sur Baher
The Armon Hanatziv attacker fled to Sur Baher, an adjacent Arab neighborhood. Large police forces are on their way to pursue him, Ma’ariv reports.
One person was very lightly wounded, according to Ynet.
Image of the knife used in Jerusalem terror attempt
This is the knife allegedly used by a young man in a failed stabbing attempt in Jerusalem an hour ago.
IDF shells Lebanon for 4th straight day
IDF cannons fired shells at the Lebanese border, according to a report in the Hebrew-language Walla news website.
The IDF spokesperson’s office said that the firing was “controlled” but issued no further comment.
Today is the fourth straight day in which IDF artillery shells are fired at Lebanon.
Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah has threatened repeatedly over the past few days to avenge the assassination of Samir Kuntar, a Druze terrorist who was released from an Israeli jail seven years ago and then joined Hezbollah.
Israel has not claimed the death of Kuntar.
36 soldiers died in 2015, lowest toll in a decade
Thirty-six Israeli soldiers died in 2015, the lowest toll the IDF has experienced in a decade.
There were no military operations in 2015, and this fact was cited by a military official as one of the reasons for the low death toll.
Six soldiers were killed in terror attacks and in operative activity. Six other died of illnesses and seven more soldiers were killed in traffic collisions.
Fifteen deaths are suspected suicides. According to the officer, 2015 was the third year in a row in which soldiers were not killed in training accidents.
MK defines ‘Islamic State Syndrome’
Islamic State Syndrome is a term used by Zionist Union MK Ksenia Svetlova, who is an expert on the Middle East and Islam, to define the fascination the brutal Sunni terror group holds for mainstream Muslims, especially young, impressionable ones.
In a column on the Channel 2 website, Svetlova writes that as early as two years ago, little children running the streets of Arab towns in Israel yell to each other Daesh, the group’s Arabic acronym, and call the strongest kid in the gang Baghdadi – the last name of Abu Bakr al Baghdadi, leader of IS.
Svetlova says a “concerned teacher from Lod,” a mixed city, “told me that for some kids in lower classes IS people are a kind of supermen. They see kids their own age in Islamic State videos and are impressed. They buy the dolls imported from China that have a knife in their hand [a shipment of such dolls was caught by Israeli customs last month].” Because IS has what Iran will never have, writes Svetlova: amazing marketing skills.
Svetlova’s column is published two days after a lethal shooting attack in Tel Aviv by an Israeli Arab named Nashat Milhem. While Milhem’s family claim he is insane, the attack bears striking similarities, albeit on a smaller scale, to the November 13 Paris attack claimed by Islamic State.
No group has claimed responsibility for Milhem’s attack and he is still at large.
‘Diary of Anne Frank’ published online as copyright expires
A French lawmaker and a French scholar published the “Diary of Anne Frank” online at the beginning of the new year.
The two published their editions of the diary on January1, when the current copyright expired, in a challenge to the foundation that allocates the book’s royalties.
Because European copyrights generally expire 70 years after an author’s death, the copyright was expected to expire at the end of 2015. However, Anne Frank Fonds, the Swiss foundation that Frank’s father, Otto, established to allocate the book’s royalties to charity, announced recently that it planned to list Otto Frank as a co-author, thus adding 35 years to the copyright. Otto Frank, the sole survivor of the eight Jews who sought refuge in the attic, died in 1980.
An Amsterdam court said earlier this week that the original text of the diary may be copied for academic research, however.
Isabelle Attard, a French Parliament member whose grandparents died in the Holocaust, published the entire Dutch text of the diary on Friday, the French news agency AFP reported. Separately, Olivier Ertzscheid, a lecturer at the University of Nantes, also published the text on his website on Friday.
“The intimate diary, written in a secret apartment in Amsterdam by a Jewish teenager, born German but stripped of her nationality, has finally entered the public domain. Seventy years after the author’s death, the whole world can use, translate and interpret these works, and use them to create new ones,” Attard said in a statement on her website.
Frank’s diary, which chronicles two years of hiding from the Nazis in an Amsterdam attic, is arguably the most famous Holocaust-era document and inspired several play and film adaptations. She died in 1945 at the Bergen Belsen extermination camp.
Adolf Hitler’s anti-Semitic book “Mein Kampf” also entered the public domain on January 1.
Ofakim mayor at funeral of Tel Aviv victim says killer ‘completely sane’
Mayor of Ofakim Itzik Danino eulogizes Shimon Ruimi, who was murdered in a terror attack on Friday in Tel Aviv.
The family of the murderer, Nashat Milhem, claims he is insane. Danino rejects the insanity claim.
“A person who plans a murder in such an orderly way, giving up other opportunities [to kill], escapes the terror scene, and can make sure that the people he is killing are Jews, is a completely sane person. The murderer from Arara is completely stable of mind,” Danino says.
Story time with President Rivlin
President Reuven Rivlin visits a Tel Aviv kindergarten, where he reads a story to the kids.
Rivlin is visiting a town battered by a terror attack only two days ago, and young parents fear for their own and their children’s lives as the killer, Nashat Milhem, is still at large.
In his visit to the Hadas Kindergarten in central Tel Aviv and alongside Keren, the teacher, and the educational staff, Rivlin reads the children the story, “Harold and the Purple Crayon” — the Hebrew-language protagonist is called Arron — by Crockett Johnson.
The kids, on their part, ask Rivlin why he wanted to be president, what does a president do, and why he did not prefer to become a soccer player.
Rivlin explains: “I’m just not very good” at soccer. “I think it’s better that I am president because that way I have the opportunity to listen to all people in the country. I listen to all the citizens and the citizens with difficult jobs. I listen to mayors and ministers, principals and teachers, and I try to help with any problem and to resolve them. The president is primarily the mouth of all people, of all the public. When the president expresses his opinion he does so after hearing everyone’s voices. And you children – even if you don’t agree with what your friend says, first of all you need to listen and think – maybe what he is saying makes sense? It is important that we listen to everyone with dignity, and maybe we will learn something,” he says.
1 lightly hurt in West Bank shooting
There are initial reports of a shooting attack in the Har Hevron region in the West Bank.
One person is lightly injured, according to Army Radio.
Shooting victim is IDF soldier
The Israeli man who is lightly injured in the West Bank shooting attack is an IDF soldier, who was shot in the foot.
New IS video threatens UK, shows execution of ‘spies’
A new Islamic State propaganda clip shows the murder of five hostages claimed, in the clip, to have been working for British intelligence services.
The clip, titled “Message for David Cameron,” contains a jihadist with a British accent reading text to the camera. He says the terror group is preparing an invasion by Islamic State fighters into Europe.
The clip then shows what looks like the murder of the hostages.
At the end of the video, a young boy says in English: “We are going to go kill the Kafir [apostates] over there.”
Soldier treated at scene of attack by IDF paramedic
The soldier wounded in a shooting terror attack south of Hebron was treated on the scene by IDF paramedics and then evacuated to a hospital in Jerusalem.
Taibe resident wounded by gunshots on Road 444
A 45-year-old resident of Taibe, an Arab Israeli town, was wounded lightly when shots were fired at his vehicle on Road 444, near the city.
He was evacuated by Magen David Adom paramedics.
Police are examining the circumstances leading to the incident.
150 Muslims fired from US factory over prayer dispute
Some 150 Muslims employees at a beef-processing plant in Colorado were dismissed from their jobs for failing to show up for work over a prayer dispute, CNN reports.
Last month, a group of 11 workers at Cargill Meat Solutions in Fort Morgan wanted to go pray at the same time in a room in the plant that is set aside for prayer and reflection. But their supervisor asked that they break up into smaller groups so as not to disrupt production, according to CNN affiliate KCNC.
They complied with the request and went in smaller groups to pray. But after their shift, 10 of the group of 11 workers resigned, Cargill spokesman Michael Martin told CNN.
News of the dispute spread to other plant employees, and about 150 Somali workers missed work for three days in protest.
Based on the company’s attendance policy, those who failed to come to work for three consecutive days were fired without any form of notice.
Deri wants Gilo building project halted after burial caves found
Shas chairman Aryeh Deri told Prime Minister Netanyahu, during a meeting of heads of coalition factions, that construction in the south Jerusalem neighborhood of Gilo “should be halted until a solution is figured out for the burial caves found there.”
Deri was referring to a construction project in the neighborhood, in which contractors found ancient burial caves halfway through clearing the ground for construction.
He asked Netanyahu to instruct Jerusalem Affairs Minister Ze’ev Elkin to halt work until a solution is found. Netanyahu agreed.
Shalit’s friends: Hamas clip is a ‘show for the camera’
Associates of Gilad Shalit respond to the publication by Hamas of photos in which Shalit can be seen having a barbecue with his captors and eating.
“It’s a show for the camera, which took place after years in which Gilad was in the dark and never let out,” Channel 2 quotes the friends as saying. “They took out the camera when it fit their agenda,” they added.
1,000% hike in calls to police since Friday’s terror attack
The Israel Police is experiencing a hike of 1,000 percent in callers reporting suspicious-looking persons, a spokeswoman says in a statement.
The police have significantly boosted their deployment in Tel Aviv since Friday’s terror attack. There are officers on the ground “around the clock,” the spokeswoman adds, with some in uniform and some in plainclothes.
The police representative calls on the public to remain vigilant, “because we are dealing with a suspect who is considered highly dangerous.”
Iran says US wants prisoner-exchange deal for Jason Rezaian
A spokesperson of the Iranian justice system, Gholamhussain Mohseni Ajai, said that American officials have contacted Tehran in order to sign a prisoner-exchange deal, the Walla news website reports.
Iran is holding Iranian-American journalist Jason Rezaian, a writer for The Washington Post.
Iran seeks, in return, the release of Iranian prisoners it says are held in US jails.
A senior American official dismissed the Iranian comments, saying that the US will not respond to every single Iranian statement. The US will continue to do all it can to bring Rezaian home, the official was quoted as saying.
Cell phone dumped by Tel Aviv shooter was found by schoolgirl
The cellular phone dumped by Tel Aviv shooter Nashat Milhem was found on Reading Street in the city by a schoolgirl, according to Israeli television reports.
The schoolgirl and her father made the connection that the find may have security significance only after Milhem’s name was published by media outlets.
Milhem apparently disposed of the phone when he was running from the scene of the attack, on Dizengoff Street.
Do you rely on The Times of Israel for accurate and insightful news on Israel and the Jewish world? If so, please join The Times of Israel Community. For as little as $6/month, you will:
We’re really pleased that you’ve read X Times of Israel articles in the past month.
That’s why we started the Times of Israel ten years ago - to provide discerning readers like you with must-read coverage of Israel and the Jewish world.
So now we have a request. Unlike other news outlets, we haven’t put up a paywall. But as the journalism we do is costly, we invite readers for whom The Times of Israel has become important to help support our work by joining The Times of Israel Community.
For as little as $6 a month you can help support our quality journalism while enjoying The Times of Israel AD-FREE, as well as accessing exclusive content available only to Times of Israel Community members.
David Horovitz, Founding Editor of The Times of Israel