Thursday, March 06, 2008

The Merkaz HaRav Kook Massacre: Palestinians Haven't Had Fun Like This Since 1929

Palestinians in Gaza celebrate the murder of students today in Merkaz HaRav Kook.

But for Palestinian Arab terrorists, massacring students is nothing new. In 1929, Palestinian Arabs attacked defenseless Jews in the Hebron Yeshiva:
For some time, the 800 Jews in Hebron lived in peace with their tens of thousands of Arab neighbors. But on the night of August 23, 1929, the tension simmering within this cauldron of nationalities bubbled over, and for 3 days, Hebron turned into a city of terror and murder. By the time the massacres ended, 67 Jews lay dead and the survivors were relocated to Jerusalem, leaving Hebron barren of Jews for the first time in hundreds of years.

...On Friday, August 23, 1929, that tranquility was lost. Arab youths started throwing rocks at the yeshiva students. That afternoon, one student, Shmuel Rosenholtz, went to the yeshiva alone. Arab rioters later broke in and killed him, and that was only the beginning.

Friday night, Rabbi Ya’acov Slonim’s son invited any fearful Jews to stay in his house. The rabbi was highly regarded in the community, and he had a gun. Many Jews took him up on this offer, and many Jews were eventually murdered there.

As early as 8:00 a.m. on Saturday, the Jewish Sabbath, Arabs began to gather en masse. They came in mobs, armed with clubs, knives and axes. While the women and children threw stones, the men ransacked Jewish houses and destroyed Jewish property. With only a single police officer in Hebron, the Arabs entered Jewish courtyards with no opposition.

Rabbi Slonim, who had tried to shelter the Jewish population, was approached by the rioters and offered a deal. If all the Ashkenazi yeshiva students were given over to the Arabs, the rioters would spare the lives of the Sephardi community. Rabbi Slonim refused to turn over the students and was killed on the spot. In the end, 12 Sephardi Jews and 55 Ashkenazi Jews were murdered.
The massacre in Hebron might also be the first documented instance of the murder of Americans by Palestinian Arabs [PDF]:
On August 27, 1929 The New York Times ran a front page article under the banner
Attack on Rabbinical College was Savage – 18 Killed in Banker’s House

...On August 27 (page 1) and on August 28 (page 3) the New York Times reported that there were eight American victims of the massacre: William Zev (Wolf) Berman, Philadelphia; David Sheinberg (Shunberg), Memphis; Benjamin (Bennie) Hurvitz (Horowitz), Brooklyn; Harry Frohman, Chicago; Wolf Greenberg, Brooklyn, N.Y.; Hyman Krasner, Chicago; Aaron David Epstein, Chicago; Jacob Wexler, Chicago.
For centuries, Arabs living in Palestine have persecuted and murdered the non-Jews who shared the land with them--even before Palestine became a Jewish state and was nothing more than territory under Ottoman rule.

These days, the Arabs living in Palestine are merely doing what they have always done when presented with the opportunity. Today, they claim that their land has been taken--but historically the Arabs in Palestine have used any excuse that come to hand.

UPDATE: Rabbi Yaakov Shapira also made this connection:
The head of the yeshiva, Rabbi Yaakov Shapira was the first to speak. Chocking back tears, he said: “This massacre is the continuation of the 1929 massacre [in Hebron] and the blood of the prophet is still boiling. The heads of the nation also understand that the heart of the nation is torah. It is time for all of us to understand that this is the truth. We all believe that the time has come for a dramatic spiritual change; for us to have strong, good and reliable leadership.”
[Hat tip: Israellycool]

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