Is lone wolf terrorism on the rise in Israel?

During the year from October 2018 through September 2019, there were almost 200 such attacks.

By
October 4, 2019 21:37
1 minute read.
IDF manhunt for terrorist who murdered Rina Shnerb

IDF manhunt for terrorist who murdered Rina Shnerb. (photo credit: IDF SPOKESMAN’S UNIT)

Almost everyday, there is an attack or attempted attack by a Palestinian against an Israeli civilian or soldier. This seemingly growing threat is causing fear and anger throughout Israeli society. 

Recently, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has been describing these attacks as a "new kind of terrorism." These attacks are typically carried out by one or two individuals acting alone. That doesn't mean that the perpetrators don't belong to Hamas or the Palestinian Islamic Jihad, but that they aren't getting orders from someone else to go into Israeli cities and outside settlements to attack random individuals. 

Israeli forces typically respond, Palestinians believe, too harshly. A Palestinian wielding a knife is often shot dead by Israeli security forces and many others have been killed in clashes with the IDF. 

The Washington Post recently looked at all of the attacks carried out by Palestinians since last October and how Israeli forces responded. They found that most of the attacks seem to be random and based on opportunity rather than careful planning. A majority of the terrorists are young, unmarried men using a kitchen knife.

Attacks: 

Throughout the year there have been 84 stabbings, 57 stabbing attempts, 31 ramming attacks, 20 shootings and four bombings. 

Plus, over the last year, Palestinians are protesting along the border fence. These protests are referred to as the "Right of Return" marches. The clashes have turned deadly as Palestinians attempt to breach the fence or the IDF feels as though the protesters are threatening to hurt soldiers or citizens. 

Death Toll:

The goal of these attacks is to kill the victims, not just to injure them. However, the attacks are typically thwarted before the Israeli sustains life-threatening injuries. 

Even though there are more terrorist attacks carried out against Israelis, only 35 have been killed this year. Compare that to 149 Palestinians killed attempting to carry out an attack on an Israeli and 59 being shot during protests and clashes with the IDF. 

These attacks are typically limited to the West Bank, Jerusalem and areas around Gaza. 




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