I’ve woken up this morning still in a state of incredulity regarding last night’s events.
We have to hit them hard. I’m just not sure our government will do what’s required.
Actually, I am pretty sure they won’t.
Meanwhile, we are yet to learn of the names of the 8 young victims. Their funeral oration will be held at 10 am Friday at the Mercaz Harav yeshiva, the scene of the deadly attack.
And in a stark illustration of the UN’s worthlessness, the UN Security Council did not even condemn the attack, since Libya would not allow it.
In other news, the IDF arrested 8 wanted terror suspects overnight, and US House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer condemned the terror attack.
Update (Israel time)
8:05AM: Soccer Dad informs me that this nephew was somewhere else at the time, as was the nephew’s cousin. He adds that from what he understands, two of the dead were friends/roommates/learning partners of his nephew and that second cousin.
8:10AM: Residents near the Merkaz HaRav Yeshiva thought that the terrorist’s rifle shots were firecrackers before the upcoming Jewish festival of Purim.
8:15AM: The names of the victims have been released. They were:
- Yochai Lipschitz, 18, of Jerusalem
- Yonatan Yitzchak Eldar, 16, of Shiloh
- Yonadav Chaim Hirschfeld, 19, of Kochav Hashahar
- Neriah Cohen, 15, of Jerusalem
- Roey Roth, 18, of Elkana
- Segev Pniel Avihayil, 15, of Neveh Daniel
- Avraham David Moses, 16, of Efrat
- Maharata Trunoch, 26, of Ashdod.
Notice their ages.
8:28AM: Security forces have apparently found the car used by the terrorist last night. The car was found near the yeshiva, and contained several gun bullets.
8:30AM: David Bogner informs me that he knows the parents of victim Avraham David Moses from Efrat, and will be posting about it soon.
10:15AM: Here are 2 of the victims: Avraham David Mozes (L) and Yehonadav Haim Hirshfeld (R).
“God picks the most beautiful flowers for his garden,” said the mother of 16-year-old Avraham David Mozes. “He (God) sees him as an angel, and we should thank him for the privilege of raising him for 16 years. Sixteen years of purity and integrity and kindness.”
Avraham was the son of Rivka Moriah and Naftali Mozes and the brother of five: Elisha Dan, 11; Ora-Dina, 6, Ayelet and Noam, 4, and Chai, 2.
His step father, David Moriah, found it difficult to deal with the pain. Choking on his tears, David spoke of the family’s “angel”.
“Every Thursday I would go to the yeshiva to study with him. This week I wasn’t able to make it. I also teach a class at the Horev yeshiva, and I sent him a test message telling him that we would complete the Torah studies on Saturday, because he was supposed to come home.
“He is a righteous, outstanding person,” said David Moriah. “He always made sure to be 100 percent, both with God and with friends and people. He had amazing internal integrity. He was like an angel.”
On Thursday evening, after hearing about the attack, they tried to locate their son, but to no avail.
“I heard about the terror attack while I was at a graduates’ convention at the yeshiva I studied at. We knew he did not always have his phone, because he didn’t want it to ring at the rabbinical seminary.
“He did not answer, but we were not worried at first because we thought he was busy studying. He usually does that. We called his friend, but he didn’t answer as well. We then found out that the friend was also killed.
And then came the stage so many people here go through. Unfortunately, the lists at the hospitals and the negative answer in all the hospitals, and then the hardest moment of all – facing the truth we did not want to receive. We are still in some kind of state of denial,” David Moriah said.
Three buses left the community of Kochav Hashahar on Friday morning towards the Mergza Harav yeshiva in Jerusalem. Community resident, 19-year-old Yehonadav Haim Hirshfeld, who was killed in the terror attack, was survived by his parents and 12 siblings.
Hirshfeld was born in the community and grew up there. “He was a talented boy with great knowledge, clever, an admirable instructor at the Ariel youth movement,” said the family’s neighbor, Chaya Meir.
11:32AM: Thousands have gathered outside the Mercaz Harav yeshiva to begin the funeral processions.
11:36AM: David Bogner writes about the family of Avraham David Mozes:
I have known the boy’s step mother since we were both single, and we have many mutual friends. I remember trying to comfort her in a Brooklyn hospital room many years ago as her young husband was slipping away due to medical complications in the aftermath of a traffic accident. When he died, I couldn’t imagine how this young woman would ever be able to put her life back together again.
But somehow she did.
When we moved to Israel, Zahava and I were delighted to find that this woman had made aliyah and was living in our community. We frequently bumped into her on the street and often sat and ‘shmoozed’ with her at the local park on shabbat. She’d married a wonderful man – a second marriage for both of them – and the family they had made for themselves was a seamless collection… some his… but all truly theirs.
The news that tragedy had visited this woman again was almost too much to imagine.
11:45AM: Infolive.tv reports that the killer, Alaa Abu Dhein, 20, used to drive for the yeshiva, according to his neighbors. The killer’s family hung green Hamas flags outside of their home in his memory.
11:50AM: Infolive.tv is now reporting that sources close to negotiations with Hamas for Gilad Shalit’s release say Shalit may be a freed soon.
3:58PM: From this morning’s eulogies for the young victims:
The head of the yeshiva, Rabbi Yaakov Shapira was the first to speak. Chocking back tears, he said: “This massacre is the continuation of the 1929 massacre [in Hebron] and the blood of the prophet is still boiling. The heads of the nation also understand that the heart of the nation is torah. It is time for all of us to understand that this is the truth. We all believe that the time has come for a dramatic spiritual change; for us to have strong, good and reliable leadership.”
“We are all in need of mercy, the entire country,” Shapira cried. “Pray for all of us and give good counsel to the families, to the anguished friends.”
Chief Rabbi Shlomo Amar was weeping as well. “We have paid with our best boys, who were sitting by their talmuds … torah was their entire world, they are the roses that have been picked … and God will have mercy on us for their merit.
Turning to the families, he said: “You should know, dear families, that this is a mourning of the entire house of Israel, as one person and one heart crying as one for the dreadful calamity that has befallen us. We will not be cruel at this hour when we are faced with such a wide crisis, and we will rise up to cast away strife; to further increase torah study.”
Jerusalem Mayor Uri Lupolianski also addressed the crowd: “Lord, nations have invaded your land, desecrated your holy hall, eight of our sweet loved ones, may God avenge their blood, who only yesterday were living amongst us, are no longer with us. Their lives were severed by lowly murderers … but the murderer did not wish to target them alone, but rather each and every one of us, each and every resident of the holy city of Jerusalem.
For many years our enemies have been trying to ruin our lives, to harm us as much as they can. Jerusalem has paid heavily in blood, and the long long list was joined last night by our eight sons.”
Compare these words to the words you hear from the palestinians, when their terrorists or human shields are killed.
We have the moral high ground.
We have G-d on our side.
We will prevail.
4:00PM: Another of the young victims: Doron Mahareta.
4:10PM: A cousin of the terrorist:
“We are proud and happy, and everyone in Jabel Mukaber is proud of him.”
What we need to do: demolish the family’s home (considering they were flying Hamas flags), and revoke their citizenship. They can go live in Gaza and be around those they are proud of.
4:11PM: Reuters reports that Hamas has taken responsibility for the attack.
4:13PM: Arutz Sheva reports that police have denied reports that the terrorist had once worked for Yeshivat Merkaz HaRav. He did, however, work as a driver who often transported children and others, and there were reports that he had occasionally been hired by the yeshiva.
They also report that Israeli security forces have razed his home, but I have not seen this report elsewhere.
4:40PM: Doron Mahareta (from 4:00PM update; also referred to as Maharata Trunoch) was of Ethiopian origin.
4:48PM: Please keep the injured boys in your prayers:
Naftali ben Gila
Yonatan ben Avital
Shimon ben Tirza
Nadav ben Hadas
Reuven ben Naomi
Elchanan ben Zehava
Yonatan ben Avital
5:02PM: Elder has collected Arab reactions to the attack.
5:03PM: The Jewish Sabbath is approaching so I will be signing off for now.