A Palestinian gunman opened fire on Tuesday night in a Tel Aviv suburb, killing five, in what Israeli authorities have called an act of terror. 
On the other side, which is denounced as being anti-Semitic, the gunman was considered a warrior fighting against Israeli occupation and seizing of Palestinian land over the past 70 years. 
The gunman was identified as a 27-year-old Palestinian who was armed with an automatic rifle, the Financial Times reported. He was killed by Israeli police. 
The shooting occurred in Bnei Brak, an ultra-Orthodox Jewish enclave outside the city. The paper called the shooting the single deadliest in the past eight years.
Four of the victims were declared dead at the scene, The Times of Israel reported. A 32-year-old police officer, who was identified as a Christian Arab, was rushed to a nearby hospital where he died.
The shooting was the third deadly attack in a week that resulted in 11 fatalities. Last weekend, two Israeli police officers were killed by two Palestinians who were citizens of Israel.
The Times of Israel said one of the gunmen had ties to ISIS.
“Israel is facing a wave of murderous Arab terrorism,” Prime Minister Naftali Bennett said. “The security forces are at work. We will fight terrorism with persistence, diligence and an iron fist.”
The Associated Press reported that these attacks occurred as “peace talks on ending Israel’s rule over Palestinians and setting up a Palestinian state on occupied lands are a distant memory.” The report said Tel Aviv has been more focused on countering Iran and building new alliances across the Arab world.
TRENDPOST: Yair Rosenberg, a contributing writer at The Atlantic and the author of the newsletter Deep Shtetl, called out Benjamin Netanyahu, who ended his 12-year run as prime minister in June 2021, for appearing to insinuate that Arabs in Israel were “collectively responsible” for these attacks.
“We must restore peace and security to Israeli citizens,” Netanyahu said. “A government dependent on the Islamic movement isn’t doing this and probably isn’t capable of doing this.”
We reported that Bennett, who will only serve two years as prime minister under the coalition’s arrangement—that includes the Ra’am party, has indicated that he will take a bellicose approach to Gaza. (See “ISRAEL’S NEW GOVERNMENT: BOMBS VS. BALLOONS.”)
Rosenberg wrote that Netanyahu has a familiar playbook when such an attack occurs. 
“Netanyahu’s go-to talking points have long framed terrorism as a uniquely Arab menace, and pushed Israel’s Jews and Arabs into oppositional corners,” he wrote. “This Manichean maneuver implicitly erases the existence of Jewish extremism while explicitly casting the country’s Arabs as a potential fifth column. And what Netanyahu merely implies, his overtly racist allies are happy to openly express.”
The last time Israel and Palestine met for peace negotiations was in 2014. The New York Times reported that Bennett and Netanyahu are opposed to a Palestinian state.
Attack Motive?
CNN reported that the Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades—the armed wing of the Palestinian Fatah movement—claimed responsibility for the attack. 
The group reportedly said the shooting was a message written in blood “in response to the Negev summit, which was held Monday in the southern Negev Desert and included top diplomats from Egypt, the U.A.E., Bahrain, and Morocco.
The Associated Press reported that the meeting was intended to discuss new cooperation in various sectors, like security and energy.
King Abdullah II of Jordan—who is a major supporter of Palestinian statehood—declined the invitation and instead visited the Israeli-occupied West Bank in solidarity with the Palestinians, according to the AP.
Bennett said in a video statement on Wednesday evening that it is up to Israelis to be vigilant.
“Whoever has a gun license, this is the time to carry it,” he said.
TRENDPOST: Israel responded to the Tuesday shooting by raiding a refugee camp in Jenin and killing two Palestinians during a shootout with IDF troops, Haaretz reported.
“During the operation, terrorists opened fire at our forces. Israeli troops returned fire that struck the gunmen. An Israeli soldier was slightly wounded,” the military said in a statement obtained by France 24.
The Palestinian health ministry said two Palestinians, aged 17 and 23, were killed in the clashes.
Israeli police also arrested the family of suspected accomplices. 
Bennett said the gunman’s house “has been set up for demolition” in order to “create deterrence.”
Al Jazeera reported that Israeli settlers across the occupied West Bank have attacked Palestinian vehicles near Salfit and Nablus.
TRENDPOST: In April of 2021, Human Rights Watch executive director Kenneth Roth said, the “oppression of Palestinians there has reached a threshold and a performance that meets the definitions of the crimes of apartheid and persecution.”
And this past January, the human rights group Amnesty International said last that Israel’s treatment of Palestinians meets the internationally accepted definition of apartheid.
As for continually labeling those who criticize Israel for being in violation of international law as “anti-Semites,” some 20 years ago, its attorney general accused the state of imposing apartheid measures:
“We enthusiastically chose to become a colonial society, ignoring international treaties, expropriating lands, transferring settlers from Israel to the occupied territories, engaging in theft and finding justification for all these activities. Passionately desiring to keep the occupied territories, we developed two judicial systems: one – progressive, liberal – in Israel; and the other – cruel, injurious – in the occupied territories. In effect, we established an apartheid regime in the occupied territories immediately following their capture. That oppressive regime exists to this day.”
—Israel’s former Attorney General Michael Ben Yair, 3 March 2002 
TRENDPOST: Israel took control of the West Bank from Jordan in the 1967 war. Since then, in addition to destroying Palestinian houses and buildings on the land they seized, they have been, and continue, to build massive “settlements.”
As reported by Bloomberg in January 2020:
“Almost a tenth of Israel’s Jews live in east Jerusalem and the West Bank, outside their country’s recognized borders. The population of Jewish settlers in the West Bank has grown four times faster than Israel’s itself since 1995. Settlers regard themselves as inhabiting land that is rightfully theirs. A different view is held by the International Court of Justice, a branch of the United Nations, which Israel regards as biased against it. The court concluded in a 2004 opinion that Jewish settlements in what it calls occupied Palestinian territory are illegal.” 
Under international law, Israeli settlements are illegal. They violate Article 49 of the Fourth Geneva Convention of 1949 that states, “The Occupying Power shall not deport or transfer parts of its own civilian population into the territory it occupies.”
The U.N. Security Council, the U.N. General Assembly, the International Committee of the Red Cross, the International Court of Justice, and the High Contracting Parties to the Convention have all affirmed the Fourth Geneva Convention applies, that this is occupied territory, and Israeli settlements there are illegal.
As for Israel’s “settlement” intentions, they were made clear by one of the nation’s respected leaders:
“We must define our position and lay down basic principles for a settlement. Our demands should be moderate and balanced, and appear to be reasonable. But in fact they must involve such conditions as to ensure that the enemy rejects them. Then we should maneuver and allow him to define his own position, and reject a settlement on the basis of a compromise solution. We should then publish his demands as embodying unreasonable extremism.” 
—Chief of Intelligence General Yehoshafat Harkabi, Ma’ariv, 2 November 1973

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