Thousands flocked to Jerusalem for the funeral of stabbing victim Rabbi Nehemia Lavi, who was laid to rest Sunday at Jerusalem's Har HaMenuchot cemetery.
Rabbi Lavi, 41, a father of seven, grew up in Beit El in Binyamin north of Jerusalem, where his parents, Yechezkel and Tirza Levy, are one of the fifteen first families to move there, but has lived in the Old City for the past 23 years. He was a rabbi at Yeshivat Ateret Kohanim.
According to the rabbi's friends, he went down with his gun to try and save those wounded by the Arab terrorist in the attack, which also killed 21 year-old Aharon Banita Bennett and injured his wife and son. Upon arrival, the terrorist stabbed Lavi and took his weapon.
Bennett will be laid to rest at Har HaMenuchot cemetery at 1:30 pm Sunday.
'You Were As Strong as a Lion'
President Reuven Rivlin gave a eulogy for Rabbi Levi.
"You were killed because of your nation and your nationality," Rivlin eulogized. "Through your mesirut nefesh [life-giving act - ed.], you have left a legacy for your people and your children; the people will never forget your bravery."
"We find ourselves in a difficult and daily battle that continues."
Ashkenazic Chief Rabbi David Lau lauded Rabbi Lavi's selflessness.
"You ran your body to save, to help, to fulfill the commandment of 'with your body,'" Rabbi Lau stated.
"Master of the Universe, we have been given tests to pass - but where is our joy on this holiday?" he continued. "Rabbi Nehemiah, we stand here opposite your grave instead of rejoicing with you. . . what kind of happiness can there be when children ask where their father is?"
Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat also hailed Rabbi Lavi as a hero.
"Unhesitatingly and courageously, you went to help when you heard screams," Barkat stated. "You were as strong as a lion."
"Yesterday you were murdered in cold blood because of a burning hatred," he continued. "Palestinian Authority inciters stabbed you along with the terrorist just because you were Jewish."
"We are in pain, but we stand strong. Any attempt to harm us or to exclude us will be reflected in another building built in Jerusalem," he promised. "I call on all of the citizens of Israel not to give the murderers what they want; we must go to Jerusalem and holy places and tell our enemies that their ways do not scare us - only strengthen us."
"You fell for the city of Jerusalem," Rabbi Shlomo Aviner, the Rosh Yeshiva (dean) of Ateret Cohanim, eulogized.
Rabbi Aviner added that Rabbi Lavi was "in love with the Torah" and had "wonderful character traits."
"You loved the Land of Israel and loved the people of Israel," he added. "You fell as a soldier without a uniform. We are all soldiers without uniforms."
"I assure you that we will continue to learn in Jerusalem, thanks to you," he concluded. "Nothing will scare us, we are stronger."
Family: You aren't ours anymore - you're the entire nation's
Rabbi Nehemia's wife Neta then spoke.
"You aren't ours anymore," she said. "You're the entire Jewish people's."
"You were a wonderful husband and father, a friend, a person of character," she continued. "You knew that Jerusalem is not just a dream, but that it is our right to live there without fear in this place, in the Old City."
"The difficulties were a challenge and we admired you for it. You gave strength to strength and good experiences. You would want us all to understand how important is it to live there."
"My father was not murdered; my father was killed in the fight with the enemy," Lavi's son stated during an emotional eulogy. "He left his home to protect and fell in battle."
21 year-old Aharon Banita Bennett was laid to rest Sunday afternoon at Jerusalem's Har HaMenuchot cemetery in Givat Shaul, in the presence of thousands of mourners.
Bennett, along with Rabbi Nehemia Lavi, were murdered in a stabbing attack from a Palestinian Arab terrorist in Jerusalem's Old City on Saturday night.
The same attack injured his wife and son; his infant daughter miraculously escaped unscathed.
Lavi was murdered in that attack when he ran out of his home to help Bennett; he was laid to rest at noon Sunday in the same cemetery. Israeli leaders hailed him as a hero for his actions.
Despite being an IDF soldier, Bennett will be buried in the cemetery's civilian section, at the request of his wife, Adelle Banita. IDF soldiers are accompanying Bennett throughout the funeral ceremony, however.
Also attending the ceremony are Ashkenazic Chief Rabbi David Lau and former Shas MK and Yachad-Ha'am Itanu head Eli Yishai.
Deputy Defense Minister, MK Rabbi Eli Ben-Dahan (Jewish Home) eulogized Bennett, reflecting as well on the current security situation.
"We tried for peace and there is no peace," he said. "We ask them to leave our land and they won't leave."
"We say here to all Arabs: we will fight the way the Jewish people fights," he warned. "We came here never to lose again."
"To all our enemies and those who hate us: know that the Jewish people have returned to their land and will not help you," he continued. "You won't have a Palestinian state, you won't have sovereignty in this land, which is ours."
"The entire land of Israel belongs to the Jews."
Rabbi David Lau also eulogized Bennett adding a prayer that G-d see the family's suffering and that it arouse His mercy vis-a-vis the Jewish people.
Dramatic footage has emerged showing the moment an Arab terrorist stabbed a Jewish teenager Saturday night, mere hours after a previous deadly stabbing and shooting spree by another Palestinian terrorist.
In the video, the terrorist can be heard screaming "Allahu Akbar," above the shouts of shocked onlookers.
Police quickly arrive at the scene and shoot him dead, several gunshots ringing out and putting an end to the carnage.
In the following seconds someone can be heard shouting "where are the casualties?!"
The head of Israel's Government Press Office issued a warning to the BBC Saturday evening, following its eyebrow-raising initial coverage of the deadly terrorist attack in Jerusalem last night which killed two people and injured three others, including a toddler.
The terrorist murdered 21-year-old Aharon Banita-Bennett and wounded his wife and two-year-old child, along with another person, and murdered 41-year-old father of seven, Rabbi Nehemia Lavi, as he attempted to save them.. The terrorist attacker - a 19-year-old college student and Islamic Jihad member - then stole Lavi's gun and opened fire on police, who responded by fatally shooting him.
But to the shock and anger of many readers - who took to social media to vent their outrage - the BBC's initial headline read: "Palestinian shot dead after Jerusalem attack kills two".
The channel later changed its headline to the more accurate "Jerusalem: Palestinian kills two Israelis in Old City," but GPO head Nitzan Hen nevertheless reprimanded the BBC for its biased reporting Sunday.
"There is a limit to the lack of objectivity in press coverage, and this time we are talking about an outrageous title which reminds one of the headline given by the CNN TV station after the slaughter at the synagogue in Har Nof, which introduced the attack as 'an attack on an Israeli mosque,'" said Hen Saturday night, referring to a series of equally shocking headlines given by the American news network in its coverage of that deadly attack.
"While the BBC corrected its title later this evening, tomorrow I intend to reprimand the head of their office in Israel and to warn him directly that we do not intend to let this pass unchallenged," Hen added.
Dr. Yagil Henkin, the brother of Rabbi Eitam Henkin, posted a Facebook status on Sunday, upbraiding police officials for not speaking with families of terror victims to announce their loved ones' deaths.
Rabbi Eitam Henkin and his wife Naama were brutally murdered in front of their four children on Thursday night in a shooting attack between Itamar and Elon Moreh in Samaria.
"Nobody officially informed us about the murder," Henkin revealed. "I was really surprised by this. I did not expect the officer [who informs families of soldier's deaths] to come for civilians, but like everyone who lost a family member before, I assumed that the police would at least call relatives when their loved ones die. But no, not at all.
"Almost *all* of the family members, from both sides, received the news in the form of calls or text messages from people who know us," Henkin explained. "In some cases, in the form of text messages from friends or acquaintances with good intentions, who did not realize we didn't know yet."
"In my case," Henkin added, "I was at a concert...only at the end at 10:42 p.m. - my mother called me to say she couldn't reach Eitam, who I didn't even know was in the area. A minute later I received a text message saying my brother had been killed. When I returned to my mother, she had also heard about it."
At the end of the Facebook post, Henkin noted that the text message had been sent to him after a news website had already declared the names of the victims as "released for publication."
"Someone 'released for publication' the news of the murder, but *no official bothered to tell the family*," Henkin charged. "People posted pictures of the car with the license plates and the information that a couple had been murdered and their four children were uninjured was broadcast almost an hour before the names were released."
"If I hadn't been at the concert, I obviously would have connected the dots before. But no one bothered to inform us officially."
Henkin offered two conclusions: "1. If you publish a scoop, blur details. You posted an image of vehicle with the license number? You've posted names and identities. 2. Don't assume that if you know, and even if the details have been released, the family knows. While this doesn't sound logical, perhaps [as in our case] no one bothered to tell them."
"I thank God that I was saved by a miracle; I could have died," Malka recounted Sunday morning to Arutz Sheva, speaking from his bed at Shaare Zedek hospital. "Now I will take with me something for self-defense, I will not walk around like that in the street."
"The general feeling among Jerusalemites is fear to walk around the city streets, defenseless."
Malka had been walking toward the Old City from his yeshiva when he was attacked.
"During the walk I saw an Arab who looked as if he's waiting for something to happen, and then began running toward us with a hand in his pocket," he recounted. "We started to run away, I got stuck on the sidewalk and he began to stab me."
Both attacker and victim dropped to the pavement, buying some time - but the terrorist still got away.
"A friend of mine saw him and sprayed him with tear gas, but the terrorist escaped," Malka said.
Malka's friend then called for help.
"I didn't feel blood until I touched my shirt," he reflected.
Jerusalem mayor Nir Barkat notified Malka early Sunday that security forces had caught and killed the terrorist, and called Malka a "hero."
But Malka is simply thankful to those who came to his rescue.
"I survived through a miracle," he said. "If my friend had not sprayed him with tear gas he would have continued to stab me."
"I thank God I was saved."
Yoni Kempinski and Tova Dvorin contributed to this report.
In the coastal town of Lod on Shabbat eve this Friday night, Arab gunfire reportedly wounded a five-year-old child as he was in a sukkah, the festive booth Jews are commanded to dwell in during the holiday of Sukkot - the same night a girl was shot in a sukkah north of Jerusalem.
Several gunshots were fired apparently by Arab assailants in Lod on Friday night, with one of them entering the balcony of the Shiloh family and hitting their five-year-old son Maoz, according to Yafit Haikin, a community leader and social worker in the coastal city.
The bullet caused a fracture to the young boy's skull, and currently he is in intensive care following a complicated surgery.
"We aren't prepared to live in a reality like this, and therefore we will go out in protest and read Psalms in front of the police station," announced Haikin. "We must stop and demand the police to act and clear the city of illegal weapons."
The protest began at 8:30 p.m. on Saturday night in front of the police station.
Tragically Maoz Shiloh was not the only Jewish child to be shot while in a sukkah during Shabbat.
According to reports, on Friday night a 16-year-old girl who slept in her family's sukkah in Kokhav Ya'akov in the Binyamin region of Samaria was also shot.
She was wounded in the lower body, likely in her leg, as a result of a bullet which was fired from a nearby Arab village.
The girl was lightly wounded, and was evacuated by a Magen David Adom (MDA) ambulance to Hadassah Ein Kerem Hospital in Jerusalem.
Adding to the gunfire on sukkahs around Israel was an incident on Saturday night in Nof Tzion, located in eastern Jerusalem, in which an Arab terrorist shot through the wall of a sukkah. Fortunately no one was wounded in the attack.
Also on Saturday night a stabbing attack took place in the Old City of Jerusalem, in which two Israelis were murdered and two others wounded. The terrorist was shot dead in the attack.
The flurry of attacks comes after senior Hamas official Mahmoud Zahar earlier on Saturday called for Arab residents of Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria to "mobilize" and "take up arms" in an open call for armed attacks against Jews.
Just last Thursday night a young couple was gunned down in front of the eyes of their four young children outside Itamar in Samaria, in an attack claimed by Palestinian Authority (PA) Chairman Mahmoud Abbas's Fatah faction.
A passerby in Jerusalem's Old City captured the horrific murder of two Israelis on film Saturday night, in a stabbing attack conducted by a 19-year-old Arab terrorist.
The video was filmed near the Lion's Gate of the Old City, and in it gunfire, screams and a baby crying can be heard as the mayhem unfolds.
At around 12 seconds into the video the terrorist, wearing a black sweatshirt, can apparently be seen stabbing a victim in a white shirt from behind. He follows after his falling victim and repeatedly stabs him on the ground.
Shouts of "Allahu akbar" (Allah is greater), traditionally shouted by terrorists as they attack, is heard around the same time.
In the attack the terrorist attacked a family with a knife, stealing a gun from the 40-year-old father whom he stabbed repeatedly before opening fire on passersby before being shot dead by security forces.
The father was murdered in the stabbing attack, and another victim died of his wounds as well. Two other victims were likewise wounded, one of them the wife of the murdered man who is in critical condition.