Residents of the French Hill neighborhood in Israel's capital are increasingly threatened by their Arab neighbors in the neighborhood of Issawiya, and have experienced a slew of firebomb attacks – the most recent of which occurred Saturday night.
Although initial reports said that the firebombs targeted a nightclub or dance hall, it now turns out that they were actually thrown outside a Conservative synagogue. A section of the synagogue is rented out on Saturday nights and serves as a dance hall for senior citizens.
There have been four firebomb attacks in the neighborhood since January, and all are seen as nationalist terror acts.
Jerusalem Municipal Councillor Dov Kalmanovich visited the neighborhood Sunday and met with the residents. Kalmanovich was severely wounded in a firebomb attack at the outset of the first Intifada, in 1987.
"What starts with rocks goes on to fire bombs and ends up with gunfire,” he said. “If we do not stop it here, we will discover terror on a daily basis. In meetings with the neighborhood residents I have encountered a worrisome phenomenon of insecurity and we must do everything to make them feel safe again. There is no doubt that there is a spike in terror in Jerusalem and that we must defeat it.”
A resident told Kalmanovich that the attacks have concentrated on a part of the neighborhood that includes the kindergarden, the synagogue and the school. “Our children have become targets,” he exclaimed. “I am worried every time my daughter stands at the bus station.”
Another resident, Merav Elbaz-Rapoport, told Kalmanovich that when residents ask for help from the authorities, they are told to volunteer for the Civilian Guard. “What kind of answer is that? We need a police solution,” she said. “We are in a real problem. The neighbors from Issawiya harass the female students from the university and our girls... The state must bring back security to our neighborhood.”
Arabs from the neighborhood of Issawiya, on Mount Scopus in Jerusalem, carry out daily attacks on students studying at the adjacent Hebrew University campus and on Jews in general, a student has told Arutz Sheva.
Arutz Sheva has been reporting for years that the Arabs of Issawiya routinely harass female students at the university as they make their way from the dormitories to the campus, and that the authorities and university have been ineffective in their attempts to stop the phenomenon. Other news channels are loath to report the phenomenon out of obedience to “political correctness.”
Attempts to get the numerous feminist MKs in the Knesset to discuss the female students' plight failed miserably, when the only female MK to show up for the discussion chastised the students for failing to solve the problem through dialogue.