Scene of suspected ramming terror attack in Jerusalem, January 8, 2017.
(photo credit: MAGEN DAVID ADOM)
As a police helicopter hovered above, dozens of officers and emergency-response personnel worked feverishly on a cold Sunday afternoon to secure the scene of an attack that brutally killed four young IDF soldiers, and wounded 17 of their comrades.
The flatbed truck driven by the terrorist to run down the unwitting soldiers – who were exiting a bus adjacent to Jerusalem’s picturesque Armon Hanatziv promenade – pinned the four conscripts under its wheels.
Rolling the bullet-riddled vehicle was not an option, lest it further crush the three women and one man underneath it, who may still have been alive. Instead, a crane from a nearby firetruck was used to lift its front end.
Paramedics at scene of Jerusalem vehicular terror attack at the Armon Hanatziv promenade, Jan. 8, 2017 (credit: MAGEN DAVID ADOM)
But it was too late to save them. Still, others could be saved, so first responders from Magen David Adom, United Hatzalah and ZAKA worked in lockstep with police to administer first aid and transfer them to area hospitals.
One survivor was in critical condition, while the other 16 wounded ranged from light to serious condition.
Hundreds of concerned civilians, and dozens of reporters and cameramen, were kept at bay behind police lines cordoning off the carnage.
Traffic in the area was shut down.
The killer lived close by, in the Arab neighborhood of Jebl Mukaber, known as a breeding ground for terrorism.
Indeed, just six weeks earlier, two Arab minors living there were arrested for incitement after setting up Facebook pages to deify their two neighbors who stormed an Egged bus and slaughtered three unarmed, elderly Jewish men with knives and guns, less than two kilometers from Sunday’s attack.
Ten other Jews were seriously wounded in that 2015 murder, which helped spur the so-called “stabbing intifada,” and resulted in a temporary wall and checkpoints blocking Jebl Mukaber from the Jewish neighborhood of Armon Hanatziv.
However, human rights activists claimed the blockade and checkpoints were inhumane, and they were promptly removed following an outpouring of international pressure.
Instead, police added multiple patrol units and hundreds of CCTV surveillance cameras to monitor potential violent activity, which in all likelihood recorded the latest mass murder.
Meanwhile, on this chilly Sunday afternoon, ZAKA workers gathered the blood and severed body parts of the four murdered soldiers so that they could be buried by their families within 24 hours, according to Jewish law.
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