The Hatzolah emergency response organization of Judea and Samaria and the Hebrew-language 0404 website are warning that Arab terrorist stoning attacks are again being under-reported by mainstream Israeli media. This is not the first time media avoid reporting about the numerous attempts to kill Israeli drivers by Arabs in the Palestinian Authority.
They are generally not reported at all in the international media, unless the attempts result in obvious murders of foreign or dual citizens.
On Monday, November 21, as of 6:30 pm, there were at least 14 stoning terror attacks perpetrated against Israeli motorists on the roads of Judea and Samaria, according to Hatzolah and 0404.
Israeli security forces have been attacked in a number of the incidents, which took place between the Arab village of Azoun and the Jewish community of Ma’ale Shomron.
There was also an attack between the Jewish community of Avnei Hefetz and the Te’enim checkpoint, near the Arab village of Hizme, north of Jerusalem between the capital and the Jewish community of Adam, near the Arab city of Halhul north of Hebron, at the Ma’ale Amos Junction near the southern entrance to the Jewish city of Efrat in Gush Etzion, and elsewhere.
An Israeli driver was also targeted by Arab stone throwers as he traveled past Huwara, near the Jewish communities of Itamar and Yitzhar and north of the Jewish town of Tapuach. In that incident, the vehicle was damaged, but miraculously the passengers were not physically hurt. Stoning has been noted as a form of attempted murder in the Israeli penal code, and is judged accordingly.
A law was passed last year increasing the prison sentence for terrorists convicted of throwing rocks at moving vehicles. It was actually an amendment to an existing law that required proof of intent; currently those convicted of stone throwing face a penalty of up to 20 years in prison, depending on the circumstances. Moreover, anyone convicted of the crime does not receive benefits from the National Insurance Institute (Bituach Leumi), and if the perpetrator is a minor, nor does his family, while he is in prison. The minimum penalty for throwing rocks at a moving vehicle is three years in prison. The law also added rocks to the list of “harmful tools” in the penal code. A number of Israelis have, in fact, been killed as a result of such attacks with many, many more injured in the course of having to dodge the stony missiles hurled at their vehicles.
Mainstream media tend to focus on attacks in Israel only when there are serious injuries and damage to vehicles. The long-lasting trauma often suffered by those who experience such attacks, which particularly affects the young, is usually discounted even when the attacks are noted. This is despite the social, educational and financial havoc such trauma can later cause, as numerous psychotherapists and trauma experts have pointed out.Hana Levi Julian