Was Tel Aviv's mayor wrong to continue his gym workout in the aftermath of terror attack?

Ron Huldai was interviewed by Army Radio not long after the initial reports of the bloodletting near Ma'ariv Junction.

January 21, 2015 16:50
2 minute read.
Ron Huldai

Tel Aviv Mayor Ron Huldai. (photo credit: FACEBOOK)

While a Palestinian man from Tulkarm went on a stabbing spree on Wednesday in the center of the city that has kept him in office for well over a decade, Tel Aviv Mayor Ron Huldai was in the middle of a workout – and he doesn't see a problem with it.

Huldai was interviewed by Army Radio not long after the initial reports of the bloodletting near Ma'ariv Junction. When asked whether he felt any sense of urgency in rushing to the scene of the attack, the mayor said he was content to allow the police to do their work without his presence.

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"Where are you at the moment?" the Army Radio host asked the mayor.

"I just got finished with my morning workout," Huldai said.

When Huldai was asked whether he had received updates on the attack during the workout, the mayor replied: "Certainly."

Then the mayor was asked: "Don't you intend to go to the scene or will the police presence there suffice?"

"Certainly, the police presence is enough," Huldai said. "The police are doing what they have to do… I don't think that my presence would've contributed anything there. By the time I would've arrived on the scene, the whole thing would've been over."

The mayor's admission that he preferred to remain in the gym rather than rush to the scene of the attack appeared off-putting to some, which may have been the reason behind Huldai's decision to issue a clarification via his Facebook account later in the day.

"The terror attack at Ma'ariv Junction this morning is a painful and stark reminder that the Tel Aviv reality is no different than the overall Israeli one," Huldai wrote. "This is the same city which has produced a majority of those [soldiers] who received citations of valor for their performance in combat during Operation Protective Edge; the same city whose residents are tops in consistently performing reserve duty; this same city has suffered a security attack in its heart this morning."

"I'd like to thank the security forces, the Magen David Adom, and the hospitals for doing their jobs in the most professional manner," the mayor wrote. "The staff at city hall is accustomed to dealing with traumatic events of this kind, and they are helping wherever needed."

"I'd like to send my wishes for a speedy recovery to the victims," the mayor wrote.

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