On Shabbat, a group of Jewish worshipers who had just finished morning prayers at a synagogue adjacent to the Tomb of Shimon Hatzaddik in Jerusalem were savagely attacked by an Arab mob, many of them teenagers from a nearby Arab high school. The worshipers were attacked with stones and bricks.
One of the stones hit the face of Mordechai Mizrahi, who was there with his 12-year-old daughter. Mizrachi's jaw was broken by one of the rocks, while another nearly poked his eye out. But to his dismay, Mizrachi told Arutz 7, IDF troops and police who came to their aid apparently did not consider his broken jaw worthy of a police report.
“We come here every Shabbat,” Mizrahi said, “and every week there is something. This time they set an ambush, with 30 Arab youths throwing stones at us. I was hit in the eye and jaw.” His daughter managed to avoid getting hit, although she was “in shock,” he said, while he injured and losing blood, managed to get to the command post of the border police unit that was battling the rioters. But he quickly left the post, after border police blamed him for the riot, and wrote in their official report of the incident that there were “no injuries.”
Mizrahi then made his way to Bikur Holim Hospital in Jerusalem, where doctors gave him first aid after determining that he had a broken jaw. He is awaiting results of tests which will indicate if he is a candidate for surgery.
As dismaying as the riot was, Mizrahi told Arutz 7 that he was even more dismayed at the bureaucratic runaround he was being given. “The police told me to come down to the station and file a complaint,” he said, but he was in no shape to take another ride and file a complaint. Yehonatan Yosef, one of the leaders of the Jewish community in the Shimon Hatzaddik neighborhood, said that community members had contacted police and asked them to come to the site and take a statement from Mizrahi. “The station police chief told us 'why are we making such a big deal out of this?'” Yosef said. “They called this a 'small incident,' but if a broken jaw is small, how do they define big? What are they waiting for?”
Yosef confirmed that there were attacks on Jews at the tomb site on a regular basis. “After many incidents and complaints, police finally placed an undercover cop at the site, in the form of a female visitor and six Arabs who could not resist attacking an apparently defenseless Jew were nabbed. They insulted the 'victim' and threw stones at her, and they were taken in. How the case will proceed I can't say, though,” Yosef said in the interview.
Last Friday, there was also a grave incident that went largely unreported by the media, Yosef said. “Police allowed the Arabs and anarchists to hold their weekly protest next to our homes, instead of outside the neighborhood, as usual,” he said. “They took the opportunity to invade some of our homes, and even took video of their thuggery, posting it on the internet. There is no doubt that such home invasions in other neighborhoods would have resulted in immediate arrests,” he said. In the end, residents, who were largely prepared for trouble, were able to chase the rioters out of their homes, and out of the neighborhood.
Yosef called on the Jerusalem municipality to punish the rioters by canceling a usage permit for the high school in the building next to the homes of Jews in the neighborhood, as the school has become the base of operations for the harassment, and worse, of the the Jewish community in Shimon Hatzaddik. “As a punishment for them, the building should be given to Jews. The right wing and the religious have enough votes on the city council to do this,” Yosef said, adding that the threat to take away the building might be enough to impel school authorities to clamp down on the rioters. “We are afraid that Mayor Nir Barkat may not want to act on this, but if he does, there's a very good chance we'll be successful.”