An Arab terrorist infiltrated Jerusalem's Merkaz HaRav Yeshiva at around 8:30 Thursday night and murdered eight Jews. At least 10 students were wounded, including five in serious to critical condition.
Five of the dead were high school students in Merkaz Harav's Yeshiva LeTze'irim [youth seminary - aa], and three studied in the upper-school Merkaz HaRav Yeshiva.
The attacker entered the yeshiva and opened fire on students before he was gunned down himself by a part-time yeshiva student, aided by an off-duty army officer from the neighborhood. The attack began in the seminary's library with the terrorist spraying bullets in every direction before anyone could react.
The part-time yeshiva student who first shot the terrorist, 40-year-old Yitzchak Dadon, said he was in the Yeshiva's study hall when he heard the shots. "Everyone left through a side door," he said, "and I left through a window, and lied down on a roof overlooking the library... When he came out, I shot him in the head twice. I saw him start to stagger, and then David Shapira [a yeshiva graduate and paratroopers officer] arrived on the scene, shot him with his M-16 rifle, and then we emptied our magazines into him."
Dadon later told Arutz-7, "It was terribly frustrating feeling, knowing he was in there shooting, but I could do nothing but wait for him to come out so that I could shoot him... While waiting, I could see some boys in a side room in the library turn off the lights and barricade their door - and though he tried, he was unable to come into the room and gun them all down."
Full story at the link. WARNING: Graphic photos.
DEBKAfile’s counter-terror sources report that for almost two years the Shin Bet’s uniquely effective defense system succeeded in thwarting almost every Palestinian terrorist attacks inside Israel. But with the deadly shooting rampage at Jerusalem’s Yeshivat Harav which claimed eight lives Thursday night, March. 5. Israel’s eight-year terror ordeal at Palestinian hands has now taken a new direction. Under the guidance of Iran, Syria and Hizballah, terror planners have learned how to bypass the universally-acclaimed Shin Bet counter-terror system by dispensing with large operational teams which include accomplices who drive the suicide killer to target. The Israeli security service found this set-up highly susceptible to penetration for advance tip-offs of attacks in store.
Thursday’s attack was carried out single-handed by a lone gunman, a local man and Israeli citizen who could move around Jerusalem unnoticed. As a delivery-man, he could conduct his own surveillance and choose his method of attack and its timing. The Kalashnikov assault rifle he used is available for cash in most Israeli towns.
The yeshiva attack revealed that senior terror planners have found they can leave operational details to a lone suicide killer after selecting him, identifying his target and setting the date. In this way, they reduce the chances of leaks to almost zero.
There is now a growing prospect of a major military retaliation against Gaza, which is controlled by the militant Palestinian group.
Sources in Gaza said that the Izzedine Al-Qassam Brigades instigated the attack by Alaa Abu Idheim, the 26-year-old gunman who stormed the Jewish religious college on Thursday. ...
[Dr. Aaron Lerner - IMRA: For some reason, Israel Radio is frequently not mentioning the role of Dadon in killing the terrorist and only mentions the IDF officer who lives near the yeshiva and joined Dadon.]
Yeshiva student who shot attacker recounts moments of horror; 'I was studying when shots rang out'
Aviram Zino YNET Published: 03.06.08, 22:42 / Israel News
A yeshiva student who shot the Jerusalem terrorist says he was busy studying when suddenly shots rang out, prompting him to grab his gun and eventually kill the Palestinian attacker.
"We realized something happened so I cocked my handgun," Yitzhak Dadon told Ynet Thursday evening.
"I went up on the roof and waited for the terrorist. Meanwhile, I saw blood and shattered glass," Dadon said. "The terrorist continue firing in the air, so I waited to see him again, and then I shot him twice in the head."
Merkaz HaRav was founded as the Central Universal Yeshiva by Rabbi Avraham Yitzchak [Abraham Isaac] HaCohen Kook in 1924. He saw it as the ultimate Torah center in which to raise Torah scholars and leaders who would help build a modern Torah society in the Land of Israel that would lead to universal and religious redemption.
When Rabbi Kook, who also served as the Chief Rabbi of the Holy Land, passed away in 1935, he was succeeded by his colleague/student, Rabbi Yaakov Moshe Charlop. Rabbi Tzvi Yehuda Kook, son of the original founder, took over in 1952, and served until his death in 1982. He was then succeeded by Rabbi Sha'ul Yisraeli and Rabbi Avraham Shapira; the latter took over as sole Rosh Yeshiva when Rabbi Yisraeli died, and Rabbi Yaakov Shapira took over from his father, who died just five months ago.
Merkaz, as it is known, is famous for its very spiritual, Torah-centered, love-of-Israel atmosphere. The vast study hall is packed with books, benches, book-stands (shtenders), and, almost throughout the day and night, students. Many of the students have completed their army service and some are IDF officers.
Thousands of Merkaz graduates saturate Israeli public life as rabbis, rabbinical court judges, army officers, professors, teachers and educators in many dozens of schools and yeshivot around the country. Rabbi Avraham Kook is considered the father of the entire movement of re-awakened religious nationalism.
More about Rabbi Abraham Isaac Kook. [See update, below.]
Rabbi Abraham Isaac Kook (1865-1935) – first Chief Rabbi of Eretz Yisrael – was a mystic and a philosopher, a preeminent Talmudic scholar and a Lurian Cabbalist, a profound and original thinker, and a saintly tzaddik.
Due to his poetic style and abstract thought, his writings are often difficult to understand, even for those fluent in Hebrew and well-versed in traditional Jewish sources. For the English-speaking audience in particular, his books are hidden treasures whose light has not been fully revealed. ...
Go to the link for English translations, by Rabbi Chanan Morrison, of selected works by Rav Kook. UPDATE: It appears the link to Rabbi Morrison's site is no longer working. For a comprehensive selection of Rav Kook's writings translated into English, please read Gold from the Land of Israel by Chanan Morrison (editor). More here.
Yohai Livshitz, 18, and Neria Cohen, 15 from Jerusalem
Yonatan Yitzhak Eldar, 16, from Shilo
Yonadav Haim Hirschfeld, 19, from Kohav Hashahar
Segev Peniel Avihail, 15, from Neve Daniel
Avraham David Moses, 16, from Efrat
Ro’i Roth, 18, from Elkana
Maharta Taruno, 26, from Ashdod
Zikhronam li'vrachah. Yakar b'einei haShem mavtah lachasidav. May they rest in peace and may their families be comforted among the mourners of Zion.