Even though the perp had been involved on a 2010 attack on another Jewish man, and even though he shouted the jihadi mating-call, “Sources close to the investigation say terrorism has already been ruled out, with the attacker thought to have mental health problems” (DailyMailUK). I really wish authorities would release more information as to why they reached such an unlikely conclusion. As I wrote earlier this week, “mental illness” has been repeatedly used to obfuscate the motives in many attacks over the past several years. I just am no longer willing to take statements from politicians and police at face value.
A Jewish man wearing a skullcap was stabbed on the street in the eastern French city of Strasbourg by an attacker who reportedly cried “Allahu Akbar” (God is Greatest) as he carried out his assault.
The 62-year-old named Chalom Levy, regarded as a “local hero” by his community after pulling a woman out of a blazing car some years ago, had just stepped out of his home in the Jewish district to do some shopping for the Shabbat, the Jewish day of rest on Saturday.
“A man with a knife ran up to him and shouted ‘Allahu Akbar’ and then stabbed him in the stomach,” a local rabbi and friend of the victim, Mendel Samama, told the Telegraph.
“He tried to stab him again – he clearly wanted to kill him – but Chalom somehow managed to get away,” he said.
Mr Levy, a retired meat factory worker, ran to a nearby café and was helped by staff and customers there, who barricaded the doors and called for police and an ambulance.
The attacker, who police said suffers from psychiatric problems and was involved in a vicious attack on a Jewish man in 2010, lingered near the café and was arrested when police arrived.
Mr Levy was seen in his local community as a hero, Samama said, adding that his friend “knows it was a miracle that he survived the knife attack.”
“A few years ago he saved a woman whose cars was on fire by running into the flames and pulling her out,” he said.
His injuries were not life-threatening and Mr Levy was expected to make a full recovery, according to Strasbourg’s chief rabbi Rene Gutman.
I am sure that Europe’s Jewish community will be relieved to know that it was a mental health issue and not stemming from virulent antisemitism. I wouldn’t be surprised if authorities blamed it on the knife and not the poor, mentally ill perpetrator was somehow a victim.