On the first day of Chanukah it will be twenty-two years since my husband was stopped by the army on his way down the Shilo hill to work.
“We’re looking for a man with a beard and a dog,” they told him.
My husband had a beard and next to him on the floor of the car was our pet dog, Moochie. The soldiers looked at him and then looked at Moochie.
“That’s not a dog,” they laughed. “It’s a toy!”
Indeed, the small, furry dog far more resembled a stuffed animal than a threatening creature.
Later, we discovered that the army was looking for a man with a beard and a dog who had allegedly committed murder. In the early hours of the morning, he had shot and killed an old, Arab farmer at point blank range in a field close to Shilo. The only witness to the crime was the old man’s elderly wife.
In Shilo we were shocked and, I must admit, nervous about revenge attacks. During the afternoon call to prayer blaring from the mosque in the nearby village it seemed as if the cries were more aggressive than usual. Unfortunately, I do not understand Arabic.
|courtesy of minareteger.hu|
“I can just imagine what they’re saying,” I said to a neighbor. “Kill the Jews! Kill the Jews!”
My neighbor shook her head. “I sure would like to give whoever killed that man a one-way ticket out of here.”
Thankfully, the Arabs didn’t invade Shilo, but the police did. It was almost as if a witch-hunt was occurring. Handfuls of people were taken in for questioning and imprisoned for a number of days. Finally, an arrest was made. A sixteen-year-old boy was accused of the crime. He didn’t have a beard but he did own a big dog. To us it seemed incongruous that he would have murdered the man but the court system didn’t agree. Although the teenager never confessed to anything he served a long jail sentence. The case was closed.
Still, I always wonder if he really did kill the old man. Perhaps it had been a Mafia act. Maybe someone owed the man money and wanted to be rid of him. As the sole witness it could have even been his wife. The Israeli General Security Service might know the whole truth of the story but I’m not sure I do.
Last week there was another sickening murder. An Arab toddler was killed and his parents and sibling seriously wounded when a firebomb was thrown into their home and burst into flames. Hebrew words were found spray-painted near the site and it has been decided by most of the media that a Jewish extremist is guilty of the crime. Not only is the individual guilty but, according to Hamas, all Jewish settlers and soldiers are culpable and should be attacked.
This is not the forum to compare how many acts of Jewish terror there are in comparison to Arab terror. Nor is it an article to contrast the PA and Hamas reactions to Arab terror and the Israeli government’s response to the same crimes allegedly committed by Jews.
It is the place that I want to make some very strong statements. I am an Israeli settler. Many people I care about have been murdered in Arab terror attacks. Still, I do not condone murder of anyone by anyone. I am repulsed by the death of eighteen-month-old Ali Saad Davabsheh. However, despite what the newscasters insinuate, I am not responsible for the crime. I refuse to accept guilt for it. Instead, I continue to pray for an end to all terror.