The IDF has deployed approximately 300 soldiers in Jerusalem to guard major bus routes, the light rail system and roads in what might be the first time the army has patrolled in the city for decades.
Troops were called in last week to beef up the police force, but today’s deployment at specific points makes the capital look more like a war zone. However, it is temporary because a non-military security system is in the works.
Foreign media might now decide to depict Jerusalem as being under military rule, but the deployment of soldiers clearly makes the public feel more secure in the city where walking in the street or riding a bus has been a journey of fear of being stabbed by a Jerusalem Arab terrorist.
Passenger traffic on Jerusalem buses was down 30 percent for one or two days last week, and usually bustling shops were nearly empty.
The failure of many Arab stabbing attacks to inflict heavy damage the past several days has led Hamas to incite terrorists to run over Jewish pedestrian, similar to the ramming of a vehicle into people at a bus stop last week in a Hareidi area. The terrorist who drove the vehicle was killed on the spot.
There is nothing like seeing an armed soldier in his IDF uniform to instill a bit of pride and security in people as well as being déjà vu of the Six-Day War in 1967, when the Old City, Mount Scopus, home of Hadassah Hospital, and other areas in southern, northern and eastern Jerusalem were restored to the city.
This week began with relative quiet, rock-throwing continues in several locations in Judea and Samaria, but no major incidents have been reported.Tzvi Ben-Gedalyahu