Despite being under a state of emergency, burned cars lined the streets of Lod as gangs of Arabs continue to roam the streets. Businesses and synagogues were firebombed and some residents, trapped in their homes, had their electricity cut by the mob as Molotov cocktails were thrown through their windows. The violence continued despite 16 companies of IDF Border Patrol paramilitary troops being deployed, bringing the total number of police to 500.
Young men from Samaria, used to defending themselves in the face of violent Arabs, arrived in Lod to help their Jewish brethren stand their ground. A video on Facebook showed the group of approximately 30 “settler” youths miraculously unscathed as Arab terrorists opened fire at them in a drive-by shooting as seen in the footage below:
It should be noted that after the shooting, a policeman in riot gear was more concerned with corralling the Jewish youths than he was with dealing with the armed Arabs. The young men questioned his actions, saying, “You didn’t see that he shot at us?
Meanwhile, a request to allow the military to enter Lod has been rejected.
Dogs to the rescue?
The Israel Dog Unit deployed to Lod as well, with one thankful resident noting “the Arabs are more frightened of one dog than 20 cops.”
Stabbing attack in broad daylight
A Jewish man is in moderate condition after being stabbed near a mosque in Lod while on his way to a synagogue on Thursday morning. A recording of the emergency phone call to the police from the victim was posted on Twitter. The assailant escaped.
Two people were injured during the rioting on Tuesday, one in serious condition from a head wound caused by stones thrown at him by the mob. A local man, 56, was seriously hurt when a rock slab hit his car.
Jews fight back
One Arab rioter was shot and killed by a Jewish resident on Tuesday. Three Jewish men were arrested in connection to the shooting which they claimed was in self-defense. Police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said the man was with a group of rioters threatening Jewish homes, and that Jewish residents opened fire in a “life-threatening situation.”
Ben Tzion Layosh, a resident of Lod, posted an update claiming that overnight in Lod on Wednesday there were nine cases of Arabs shooting at Jews resulting in two wounded, one stabbing, all resulting in no arrests. He also witnessed one case in which Arabs surrounded a house, trapping a Jewish woman inside, pelting the house with stones and tear gas while pounding on the door.
Getting shot at with no police to respond
The police were swamped with emergency calls and Layosh posted a recording of the police returning a call in which a woman had called several hours earlier when Arabs shot at her house and at other people who were on the street. The police asked if they could help and the woman answered that the incident had been taken care of and the wounded were taken to hospital. The police responded that since the incident had been handled, there was no way they could help her. She was, of course, angry, noting that she had been trapped in her house for three days with no response from the police.
Layosh also posted a half-hour video from his balcony in which live fire was heard and columns of smoke were clearly seen rising, growing larger and more numerous as the video continued. Fireworks were seen being fired at police in what amounted to a firefight. Layosh reported that rocks and iron bars were also used against the police as well as against civilians. Layosh made other posts in which the fires could be seen continuing throughout the day. Yet another video showed a religious kindergarten that was gutted by a firebomb. The facility was blessedly empty at the time of the attack due to the rocket attacks.
Is ‘coexistence’ a failure?
Lod, where one-third of its 78,000 residents are Arab, is one of several mixed cities where, until a few days ago, Jews and Arabs coexisted peacefully. Though some unrest broke out in the 2000 intifada, the level of violence prompted a visit by PM Netanyahu on Tuesday night.
In the below video, when the shooting begins, the police flee, leaving the residents defenseless.
“These events have no excuse. We will not tolerate this [violence]. We need to restore calm. If this isn’t an emergency situation, I don’t know what is,” he told reporters, stressing, “We’re talking about life and death here.”
An unprecedented situation
Police Commissioner Kobi Shabtai described the situation as “unprecedented.”
“We are witnessing a situation that we have never seen before in mixed cities, and this includes serious nationalist violence, vandalization of religious symbols and also attempts to attack policemen and close major roads,” Shabtai said. “The Israel Police has a series of national missions these days and we will carry out our tasks and restore order.”
Police said they arrested nearly 400 people allegedly “involved in riots and disturbances” across the country Wednesday.
Mayor Yair Revivo compared the situation to Nazi Germany.
“This is Kristallnacht in Lod,” Revivo said on Channel 12.
A curfew was imposed on Wednesday night in addition to the state of emergency which included a ban on people entering the city of Lod, residents leaving their homes, and restricted gatherings in public spaces starting at 8 PM. Despite the measures, rioting continued.
The curfew was made more difficult due to the possibility of a rocket attack which would require residents to run for shelter. A Code Red siren did go off on Wednesday night but it was met with fireworks and cheers from some Arab residents, according to Channel 12.