Last Night I Almost Directly Experienced My First Terror Attack

Last night I almost experienced my first terror attack.

My girlfriend K and I went to the Tel Aviv Port for dinner. We searched for parking near the restaurant which I had booked, but with no success. It seemed everyone was there.

But of course not everyone was there. With Covid numbers down and the weather simply wonderful, large crowds were out elsewhere, all over the country – including at bars, restaurants and cafes on Tel Aviv’s Dizengoff Street, which we had passed on our way driving to the Port, not too long before.

Dizengoff Street was the scene of absolute mayhem beginning around 9pm when a clean-cut hero of the Woke (i.e. palestinian Arab terrorist), who could have passed for an Israeli, opened fire on a bar, killing two best friends from childhood and wounding many others, including two currently in critical condition. 

Around the time of the shooting, my Whatsapp notifications went berserk with reports of a terror attack in the Dizengoff area. My brother-in-law asked if any of my kids were out in Tel Aviv, and I checked to see if my oldest – the only one whose plans I was not sure of – was ok. She was at home and fine. I breathed a sigh of relief.

I looked up from my phone as K continued driving to find a parking spot. Just as I told her about the terror attack, I saw a number of soldiers moving around the Port, guns raised and eyes looking through their gun scopes.

I was a combination of nervous and furious.

Around this time, I received this Whatsapp message:

“Let’s stop looking for parking and get out of here!” I exclaimed.

K went along with my suggestion.

“It is late and we are both hungry. Let’s look in Jaffa* for a restaurant,” she suggested.

This was still too close for comfort for me and we ended up eating at The Tachana (station) further away in Tel Aviv, even though, to be honest, I would have preferred to have left Tel Aviv altogether. Especially as I saw police everywhere, on high alert:

Taken from inside the car on the way to the restaurant at the Tachana

Although the restaurant at which we ended up eating is considered to be very good, the experience was terrible. The food was bland and the service terrible; they got our order wrong and did not bring our drinks or other things we requested, despite us requesting them multiple times. When we asked one of the waitresses what was going on, she admitted that everyone was tense. We later saw the staff all checking their phones. The tension in the air was palpable. The last time I experienced anything like it was last year when we were under heavy rocket attack.

After we left the restaurant – the recipients of a substantial discount because of the terrible food and service – we started our drive home.

It should have taken 30 minutes, but it ended up taking closer to 2 hours as the army had set up a checkpoint, clearly as part of their search for the terrorist.

This post has been my attempt to convey to you what it felt like here last night, from the perspective of someone who felt stress, tension, and anger as events unfolded. But my family and I are thankfully alive and well.

I cannot stop thinking about the victims and all those who while physically unscathed will be emotionally scarred for life. I hope those reading this do too, and understand better the evil we are up against.

*The terrorist was killed in a shootout this morning after he was found hiding near a mosque – in Jaffa.


David Lange

A law school graduate, David Lange transitioned from work in the oil and hi-tech industries into fulltime Israel advocacy. He is a respected commentator and Middle East analyst who has often been cited by the mainstream media