Daily Israel Report

Elderly Yafo Resident: 'Arabs Are Killing Me Slowly'

A Jewish woman tells a tale of attacks by her Arab neighbors, and the police's apathy. A Jewish defense group organizes in the north.
By Gil Ronen
First Publish: 3/30/2008, 11:00 PM

Lilian Vaknin, a Jewish resident of Yafo (Jaffa), was brutally attacked by an Arab neighbor on Friday during the Arab march marking Land Day. Vaknin has been victimized by her neighbors for years, yet the police are unable or unwilling to help her.

As Arab attacks on Jews become commonplace, meanwhile, a century-old Jewish self-defense organisation, HaShomer, is being born again in the Galilee.



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'He started spitting on me'
"The Arab youth from the Ibrahim family came to my house and slammed the door hard. I was frightened, and then he came to me and started spitting on me. Then the beating began, in all parts of my body. I lost consciousness and what I remember is just his hands that caught my hair and slammed my head into the floor," Lilian Vaknin recounted.

Lilian was taken to the hospital after the attack. Her son, Shimshon, called the police, but the policemen who arrived were unable to locate the attacker and left the scene. 

Shimshon said in an interview to Arutz 7 that the attackers belong to an Arab family of criminals that controls large parts of Yafo and that the police do not want any trouble with. He said someone appears to be making sure that all of the complaints filed against the criminal family are closed without an investigation.

Dozens in 'New HaShomer' Meeting in Galilee
The attack on Lilian Vaknin is just one story in a growing number of Arab attacks on Jews and Jewish property in recent years. The number of Arab Israelis involved in the attacks has grown exponentially. Throughout the Negev in the south and the Galilee in the north, and in mixed Arab-Jewish cities like Haifa, Lod and Yafo, Jewish cars are attacked with rocks, Jewish women are molested, Jewish farmers are terrorized, and police and firemen are attacked.

In response to the wave of agricultural theft and violence, the "New HaShomer" – an organization dedicated to fighting off Arab attacks on agricultural land and pastures – held a meeting in the Galilee Sunday with MK Effie Eitam (NU/NRP) and legendary IDF fighter Meir Har-Tzion in attendance. Most of the participants were IDF elite unit reservists and sons of farmers.

Chaim Dayan, the director of Ambal (the organization of cattle growers for beef) told the gathering that "the residents of Israel and the government must wake up, because the red line has already been crossed… While the IDF defends the country's borders from enemies, the country's land is being taken away from us – and no one is doing anything about it, including the government, which rejected the Pasture Law this week and is postponing the discussion of the Dromi Law."

MK Effie Eitam said that 20 MKs have organized a lobby for protection of state lands. "The cattle farmers, who defend the national lands, are not sufficiently protected by the government," he said. He hailed the gathering as a sign of a renewed awakening of the Zionist spirit of the original HaShomer guard group.

The original HaShomer was founded in Kfar Tavor in 1909. It marked the first time that Jews began to guard their communities in an organized fashion. Prior to HaShomer's founding, Arabs were employed as guards. The Jewish HaShomer guards formed the nucleus for the the Hagana.