Israeli soldiers killed a Palestinian Authority terrorist late Wednesday night after he and another terrorist firebombed an IDF checkpoint they were manning in a “pillbox” watch tower in Samaria.
The two terrorists attacked the IDF post, near the Jewish community of Einav, and soldiers shot back, killing one of the terrorists. The second terrorist was lightly wounded and was treated at a PA hospital in Tulkarm, approximately 10 miles east of Netanya.
The attack, a major escalation in Palestinian Authority terror, followed a long day of riots, firebomb and rock-throwing attacks on soldiers and motorists, especially on the north-south highway connecting Jerusalem with Kiryat Arab-Hevron. One soldier was slightly wounded by a rock and several cars sustained damage.
Tension and violence have grown since the death on Tuesday of jailed Palestinian Authority terrorist Maysara Abu Hamdiyeh, who was suffering from throat cancer that had quickly spread and became terminal. The Palestinian Authority accused Israel of “murdering” him by not treating him properly and immediately set the stage for an escalation in terror by shutting down schools before noon on Wednesday as a sign of mourning.
Grieving for “martyrs” usually is accompanied by comforting them with riots, rock throwing at Jews, launching rockets on civilians in southern Israel and – Wednesday night – firebombing one of those “degrading” IDF checkpoints where soldiers are on the lookout for terrorists ready to blow up Israelis in urban centers.
The terrorists who threw a firebomb at the IDF at Einav and was killed was a high-school age student, identified as Amar Nasar.
More of the same is expected on Thursday, when Hamdiyeh, who was convicted and jailed for planning a suicide bombing, will be buried in Hevron.
The escalation of terror is the “welcome mat” for U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry when he visits Ramallah and Jerusalem next week.
Hours before the Palestinian Authority terrorist attack on the IDF checkpoint, U.S. State Department spokesman Victoria Nuland told reporters at the daily briefing, with a straight face, that “nobody wants to see violence of any kind, either by demonstrators or by security services in response to peaceful demonstration.”
It is not quite clear what “peaceful demonstration” she was talking about since virtually all of them are accompanied by firebombing and rock-throwing, the latter which Haaretz’s Amira Hass wrote on Wednesday is the “right and duty” of PA Arabs trying to get rid of the “foreign occupier.”
Kerry will be talking about Turkey and Syria as well as his beloved “peace process,” which, unlike Israel, is all the Palestinian Authority is interested in.
One of Nuland’s choice comments in her briefing with reporters on Wednesday was a reference to “the remarks that the President made when he was on his trip, that both sides are going to have to help create an environment for peace.”
The question of what creates an environment of peace was not lost on reporters covering the State Dept. but was a bit too much for Nuland to handle.
One journalist, referring to Kassam rocket fire on Sderot Wednesday morning, asked, “Exchange of fire has resumed between Hamas and Israel. Do you think that November ceasefire has gone?”
Nuland acted as if the rocket attacks never happened, saying, “I’ve seen these reports. I’m not in a position to evaluate them one way or the other. But as you know, we considered that November ceasefire to be absolutely fundamental for everybody involved. So we’ll have to see what happens now.”
What has happened since she finished her media briefing was more rock and firebomb attacks on civilians and soldiers.
The Palestinian Authority strategy for years has been to win concessions from Israel piece by piece to create situation in Judea and Samaria similar to that in Gush Katif before the 2005 expulsion. The idea it to make life so unbearable for Jews that the IDF has no choice but to defend them – and that means killing the enemy – or surrendering the land and moving the checkpoints back to the “Auschwitz borders,” the term used by former Israeli Ambassador to the United Nations Abba Eban to describe the 1949 Temporary Armistice Lines that existed until the Six-Day War in 1967.
If the Palestinian Authority can get to that point, it would take only one or two missiles on Tel Aviv to push the checkpoints back to the Mediterranean Sea.