Yesterday we witnessed yet another horrifying murder of a young Israeli father, Eliyav Gelman Hy’d, and once again the busy Gush Etzion crossroads was the focus of the attack.
This is how the attack unfolded:
According to an initial investigation of the incident, Gelman was attacked by a Palestinian man, 26-year-old Mamduh Amro, while standing at a bus stop at the junction at approximately 12:15 p.m.
Amro, a teacher from the village of Dura near Hebron, jumped on Gelman and may have succeeded in stabbing him before soldiers nearby opened fire.
“IDF forces at the scene responded and in order to thwart the attack fired toward the assailant. Initial investigation suggests that Captain Gelman was injured as a result of the fire,” an army statement said. Gelman was in uniform when the attack occurred, the army said.
One or more bullets accidentally struck Gelman, critically injuring him. He was taken to Shaare Zedek Medical Center in Jerusalem, the Magen David Adom rescue service said, where doctors pronounced him dead some two hours after the attack.
The fact that it was Israeli gunfire that killed Eliyav Gelman Hy’d does not detract from the fact that he was essentially murdered by the terrorist. The Arab was in the act of stabbing Gelman, and would likely have murdered him if he himself was not shot by soldiers nearby. Tragically, Gelman was hit too by one stray bullet.
His family were so noble despite their grief and refused to blame the soldiers for his death. There is also another family tragedy involved:
Despite the circumstances of the death, Gelman’s family said they were not angry at the army for the mistaken shooting, the Ynet news website reported.
Gelman’s brother-in-law was Benaya Sarel, an IDF soldier killed during the 2014 Gaza war who was also from Kiryat Arba.
The number of Israeli victims of Palestinian terror is steadily rising:
With his death, Gelman becomes the 29th Israeli to be killed by Palestinian terror and violence since October, plus three non-Israelis. Nearly 170 Palestinians have been killed over the same period, some two-thirds of them while carrying out attacks and the rest during clashes with troops, according to the Israeli military.
Speaking shortly after the attack, President Reuven Rivlin told a meeting of a Arab municipal leaders that they must condemn terror.
“The fire of terrorism, which has taken from us so many victims, is the same fire which will burn the bridges that we are trying to build today. I send my deepest condolences to the bereaved family,” he said.
Thousands of people attended the funeral of Eliyav Gelman Hy’d, which took place in Kfar Etzion cemetery:
Thousands of mourners joined the funeral procession carrying Gelman to his final resting place. Minister Ze’ev Elkin (Likud), MK Motti Yogev, and top army brass were all in attendance.
Gelman, a resident of Karmei Tzur in Gush Etzion, was attacked by an Arab terrorist at a hitchhiking station at Gush Etzion Junction.
Gelman leaves behind his wife, Rinat, and two sons, Yair and Yoav.
Gelman grew up in Kiryat Arba and learned in the Mekor Haim yeshiva in Gush Etzion.
For his mandatory army service, Gelman enlisted as a paratrooper. He later transferred to the air force for he served until recently.
His brother Eyal noted how strongly he was connected with the Land of Israel, with the Jewish People, and with the Torah.
Gush Etzion Regional Council chief Davidi Perl mourned the loss and called on the government to do more to protect Gush Etzion residents.
“Your hearts are filled with this great pain. Eliyav was another victim in the war over Gush Etzion, a war that started decades ago and that sadly hasn’t ended. We’re together now with the family and with the residents of Karmei Tzur sharing in their pain. We’re going to need to see what steps the Israeli government will do to change this situation.”
His brother, Eyal, described the family’s loss and the struggles they would now face in his absence.
“You never feared death and always took care of your family. What will be now? Who will take Yoav to synagogue? who will be there for Rinat when she gives birth?” In another month and a half the baby will be born, your flesh and blood, but he will never be able to hug you.”
His father, David, gave his parting words to his son. “I never imagined that I would be the one to eulogize you,” he said.
“You’ve joined those who sanctified God’s name. Many generations sacrificed their lives; we who are now suffering accept this judgment.”
Minister Elkin offered his own eulogy of Gelman, remembering him as “An officer, a fighter, and a hero of Israel.”
May Eliyav Gelman’s memory be for a blessing. May Hashem give strength to the young widow and her children and may they and the family be comforted amongst the mourners of Zion and Jerusalem. יהי זכרו ברוך
My heart breaks and my eyes weep for the terrible loss of another young Israeli father, another victim in this relentless wave of terrorism which the government is having trouble in deal with in any coherent fashion.
It is incomprehensible to me how an IDF that could carry out missions such as the Entebbe rescue or the airlift from Ethiopia, and a government that can authorize bombing raids into enemy territory near Damascus or out at sea in order to thwart missile shipments, cannot between them come up with some plan or other to minimize if not completely end this wave of terror.
Instead of proposing to make life easier for the Palestinians, perhaps life is too easy for them already which is why they are carrying out so many attacks. Maybe life should be made harder for them. Why not install more checkpoints, and not remove any. At frequent attack spots, particularly Tzomet HaGush (Gush Etzion crossroad) and Sha’ar Shechem (Damascus Gate) in Jerusalem, barriers should be set up and every single person entering there should go through thorough security just like at the Kotel – or at the airport for that matter The road should be narrowed so that traffic and people can only move through in single file.
Yes, it will make life very difficult, not only for Palestinians but also for Israelis. Maybe a separate “checkpoint line” can be installed for Israelis. After all since we’re being accused of apartheid, we might as well at least do some apartheid!
Speaking of which, how about more severe punishments for the Arab terrorists and their supportive families. Since every Arab family whose house is demolished or who have produced a terrorist receives a nice fat compensation payment from the Palestinian Authority, not to mention Iran, how about simply deporting those families. If no third country will take them (can’t say I blame them) send them to Gaza. Ignore the world’s screams. They scream at us anyway when we simply take basic defensive measures. We might as well give them something proper to scream about and maybe this will have more of a deterrent effect.
I’m not a traffic planner nor a military adviser, and not even a political expert, and it is very likely that my suggestions are not feasible. But surely there has to be some way to bring this terror under control?!
Hello? Is this the Government? Is this thing on? Is anyone there?