Man who shot Jerusalem terrorist: Soldiers hesitated to shoot because of Elor Azaria

Did Azaria verdict play a role? IDF Spokesman denies hesitancy, link to case.

January 8, 2017 15:54
1 minute read.
Jerusalem terror attack

Scene of Jerusalem ramming attack. (photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM)


Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analysis from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief


A civilian security guard who shot the terrorist during Sunday’s attack said soldiers on the scene were hesitant to shoot, due in part to the manslaughter conviction four days earlier of Sgt. Elor Azaria for killing a downed terrorist.

But the IDF Spokesman and a commander at the IDF Officers School contradicted this version of events.

Security guard and tour guide Eitan Rund told Army Radio that after the truck drove into the crowd, “I saw the truck go in reverse, and then I realized that it wasn’t an accident.

“I ran toward him [the driver] and emptied my whole clip. He drove backward and onto the wounded again. They were motionless, some wounded and some scared. It wasn’t a good scene.”
Jerusalem Terror Attack: Footage of truck ramming into group of people in Armon Hanatziv, Jan. 8, 2017

Rund said that the soldiers were hesitant to shoot at the truck after it slammed into the group of people. The fact that Azaria was convicted of manslaughter for shooting a wounded terrorist was the reason for the hesitation, he said.

“There was hesitation to open fire,” he said. “I have no doubt that this was a significant factor, because all they tell them [in the army] recently is to be careful. It could be that a few minutes less of hesitation and the situation would have been better.”

But Col. Yaniv Aluf, commander of the IDF Officers School, who carried out a preliminary investigation of the attack, appeared to contradict Rund’s version of events. Aluf’s investigation suggested that at least two cadets fired toward the terrorist at close range.

IDF Spokesman Maj.-Gen. Moti Almoz backed this assertion, saying that it was incorrect to say that soldiers hesitated to shoot, or that the Azaria conviction had some bearing on the incident.

The soldiers did not understand at first that it was an attack, thinking it was a car accident, he said.

“The moment that they realized that it was an attack, two cadets fired toward the truck,” Almoz added.

It was not clear if their shots killed the attacker or stopped the attack, but it is clear that they used their weapons, he said.

“The army does not know of any soldier who was afraid to shoot because of Azaria,” Almoz said.

Join Jerusalem Post Premium Plus now for just $5 and upgrade your experience with an ads-free website and exclusive content. Click here>>

Related Content

Nuseir Yassin (a.k.a. Nas Daily) presents at the ROI Community annual conference.
June 26, 2019
Nas Daily’s evaluation of the Start-up Nation


Cookie Settings