As violent clashes erupted throughout Israel and Palestinian territories, Aviva Yisraeli decided to carry a handgun while commuting from her home in the West Bank settlement of Tekoa to a weekly course in Jerusalem. “I feel that it’s important for us to do everything in our power to protect ourselves,” said the mother of four, adding that she refuses to be a "sitting duck."
|This is the photo that Aviva Yisraeli |
posted on Facebook. (Photo: Aviva Yisraeli)
After she posted a Facebook photo showing a BUL Cherokee — an Israeli version of a Glock — in her lap as she drove, Yisraeli, earned the nickname “Glocker mom.” Unlike many of her neighbors, Yisraeli and her husband have not fortified their cars against stones and bullets, preferring to maintain a sense of normalcy. “If we continue to barricade ourselves, you can never take care of the problem,” she said.
Settlers like Yisraeli aren't counting on Israeli security forces to protect them from attacks that have escalated since Oct. 1, when Palestinian gunmen ambushed a couple in their car near a West Bank settlement and shot them dead at point-blank range in front of their four children sitting in the back seat. The deadly tit-for-tat confrontations have so far claimed the lives of at least five Israelis and 26 Palestinians, including three killed Monday.
Israeli security forces inspect the body of a Palestinian man
who was shot dead after carrying out a stabbing attack on
an Israeli soldier and three passers-by in the coastal
city of Tel Aviv on Oct. 8, 2015. Getty Images
The Israeli government announced new policies to contain Arab violence, including relaxed rules for security forces to open fire and a four-year minimum jail sentence for gasoline-bombers and rock throwers.
But Yisraeli and many neighbors said tougher security measures have done little to deter Palestinian assailants. They cite an incident nearby last week, when 20 Palestinian men approached a woman driving in a car, smashed her windows, and attempted to force her out. The army arrived 20 minutes later — after residents had scared the assailants away.
“The Arabs have absolutely no fear from our army .…but when I started carrying our gun, I realized that they do have fear from the civilian response,” she said. “As they say, it’s better to visit you in jail than at the graveyard.”Read the rest of the story HERE and view a related video below:
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