Two soldiers were attacked by a knife-wielding terrorist on Route 60 in Samaria on Wednesday morning, before one of the victims shot him dead.
One soldier was seriously wounded, but the second, St.- Sgt. Tomer Lan, managed to fire his rifle and kill the terrorist, despite being stabbed in the back.
He gave an account of the incident from his hospital bed.
A combat medic from the Home Front Command’s Tavor Battalion, Lan said his unit had been deployed near the Shiloh junction to secure the road during the Passover vacation period. He was standing beside an army vehicle when a Palestinian approached the soldiers.
“He passed me, and continued walking for about 100 meters, before disappearing,” Lan said. “After a few seconds, he did a kind of U-turn and headed back in my direction.
When he was within a few meters from me, he started running and yelling, and pulled out a knife and stabbed me in the back.
“I fell and landed on rocks on the side of the road. While I was on the ground, he entered the vehicle where two of my friends were sitting and began stabbing them. I cocked my rifle while I was on the ground, aimed at him, and shot and killed him.”
The soldier in the vehicle sustained serious stab wounds to the neck and hand.
“He said he was alright,” Lan recalled. “I started giving him first aid. I stopped the bleeding from the neck as we called Magen David Adom and army [back-up] forces.”
Magen David Adom paramedic Hagai Bartov arrived and helped the seriously wounded 20-year-old soldier.
“During rapid evacuation to hospital, we gave him life-saving treatment that included stopping the bleeding, sedation and putting him on a ventilator,” said Bartov, whose ambulance rushed him to Shaare Zedek Medical Center in Jerusalem.
Security sources believe the attacker acted alone and was not part of a terrorist organization.
Palestinian sources identified the attacker as Muhammad Karakera, 29, from the nearby village of Sinjil.
Economy Minister Naftali Bennett said that whoever seeks to harm innocent Jews should be killed.
“From Iran to Shiloh, our enemies have one goal: to harm as many Jews as possible,” the Bayit Yehudi chairman said.
Bennett expressed support for the soldier who killed the terrorist, saying “that should be the fate of whoever harms innocent Jews.
Such a serious incident should end like this and not with [the terrorist] dreaming of being released from prison.”
Construction Minister Uri Ariel (Bayit Yehudi) pointed out that less than a week ago, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas said his hand is outstretched in peace.
“It has already turned out that his hand is hiding knives, rocks and Molotov cocktails and other tools of destruction meant to murder Jews,” he said.
According to Ariel, “in facing Arab lies and manipulations, Israel must have a strong right-wing government that knows how to defend Israel’s security and not surrender to terrorism.”
MK Miri Regev (Likud) called on Abbas to condemn the terrorist attack.
“It cannot be that Abbas incites and fuels the flames on the one hand, and on the other says he wants negotiations with Israel. Abbas has to prove his intentions,” she said.
Regev wished a speedy recovery to the two wounded in the attack, and commended the soldier for killing the terrorist and preventing a worse attack.
Deputy Services Affairs Minister Eli Ben-Dahan (Bayit Yehudi) called on the government to destroy the terrorist’s house, calling it an effective deterrent, and to deport his family.
Hamas welcomed the attack as a “natural response to Israeli crimes.”
Last Thursday, an soldier suffered light stab wounds at a checkpoint in the northern West Bank. In that attack near Oranit, 20 km. east of Tel Aviv, the assailant, a Palestinian, was immediately apprehended.