I, too, was stabbed for being a Jew.
My cowardly attacker came from behind, thrusting a knife deep into my back, just to the left of my right shoulder blade, mere centimeters away from penetrating lung. The second stab, into the muscle of my right tricep, was comparatively benign compared to the first and most devastating wound. I shouted in shock and spun around to see my attacker fleeing down the street.
At first the pain was no greater than a hard punch and, initially, I thought the attack was exactly that, a random punch. Confused as to what had just happened, I threw my left arm over my right shoulder to feel the wound, and was shocked to discover that my finger easily entered the flesh of my back. Upon seeing my hand drenched in blood, I realized what had just happened.
As I learned during my IDF service in the Golani infantry unit, when one is wounded in “merkaz massa,” anywhere in the torso, coughing blood is a sign that the lungs have been punctured and it is only a matter of time until the victim drowns in his own blood.
As I felt around my mouth for any signs of blood I began banging on the window of the closest building yelling for someone to call an ambulance.
What makes my story so noteworthy is not the miraculous nature in which I evaded death or serious injury. What makes my story worth telling is that it happened neither during my IDF service in Lebanon, Gaza, or Hebron nor during the 15-plus years of my life residing in Jerusalem. I was stabbed in New York City. Stabbed by a man, the police would later tell me, who needed to stab a Jew to be accepted into a gang.
As I sit here in my Jerusalem apartment hearing the sirens which have become devastatingly commonplace, I write this article in response to the Facebook posts I am reading from olim who are questioning the wisdom of their decision to move their wives and children to the middle of an intifada in which many fear leaving the confines of their homes.
We must open our eyes. It can happen anywhere. France, London, Seattle, New York, Australia…
Jews are being attacked everywhere with increasing frequency and ferocity every day. All one must do is scan the news to see the alarmingly dramatic upswing in anti-Semitism around the world.
When a Jew is murdered in the Diaspora, they join the millions senselessly murdered and martyred for their Judaism. But there is something fundamentally different when it happens here in Israel. When we are attacked here it is not merely because of our identity, it is because of our mission. Here we are not tragic victims, but pioneers, working to bring to fruition a 2,000 year old dream of establishing the first Jewish commonwealth in our beloved homeland.
The belief that we can flee and find refuge elsewhere is an illusion.
Read the full article by Ari Abramowitz at JPost