Jewish victim of mob attack in Taibe: An Arab man saved my life

Netanya resident whose car was stoned and set fire to at entrance to Taibe says he might have died if an Arab man had not pulled him out of his car and rescued him.

Israeli car set on fire in Taibe (photo credit: BURKA.NET)
Israeli car set on fire in Taibe
(photo credit: BURKA.NET)
The Israeli driver whose vehicle was attacked by masked assailants at the entrance to Taibe on Route 444 on Sunday night recounted the incident which came among heightened tensions between Arabs and Jews after police shot and killed a Kafr Kana man over the weekend.
"I came back from work in Netanya. When I came to the stoplight, they stopped me and tried to talk to me, but I didn't understand a word because I don't speak Arabic. So, they started throwing stones on my car and then set it on fire. A few Arabs helped me get out of the car, from the passenger side," the driver said in an interview with Army Radio on Monday.
The Netanya resident described how he was rescued from the situation. "I was afraid I was going to die and the car was about to go up in flames any second. Suddenly, someone pulled me out of the car and put me into his car that had his children in it. He saved my life."
The driver, who identified himself as 'Moshe,' said that he intends to continue to travel to work normally everyday despite the incident. "I'm not sure I'll continue to visit Arab towns. What happened to me was really on the level of a miracle. I got out with just a few scratches. I didn't even have to go to the hospital. An ambulance came, but I only had to wash my face. I just wanted to give many thanks to the people who helped me."
Eric Bermi, the director of the government council responsible for overseeing Taibe's municipal services, said that it must be taken into account that "those who saved the victim were Arabs from Taibe, and not all Taibe residents were looking to do damage."
He said that "those responsible for the noise and the demonstrations were a group of high school students, not all of whom were from Taibe. We will work to speak to students in schools as is necessary today."
Bermi added that "Taibe is quiet and calm. Everything bad that happens they try and put on Taibe. That's not something that happens only in this city. It happened in the North, in Jerusalem in Wadi Ara, but its easier to single out Taibe. Today we will hold conversations with senior members of the community to prevent these things from happening. The truth is, I feel safer here than in Acre. The people here are not extremists."
"I am here to fix and rehabilitate the city and I call on the residents to not do the type of things that happened here last night. When I first got here it was difficult to be accepted. Now I feel at home. Come to Taibe and you'll see a calm and quiet city. Taibe has the lowest crime rates of all the towns in the area," Bermi said.