Suicide attack at hospital thwarted

Another stomach-churning report of a would-be suicide murderer captured by Israeli soldiers before she could destroy herself and others– at an Israeli hospital.

This time it was a 21-year-old woman from Gaza, Wafa Samir Ibrahim Bas. The Jerusalem Post reports:

Bas suffered severe injuries when a gas canister exploded in her house while she was cooking last year. In the framework of humanitarian assistance offered by Israel to the Palestinians, she was admitted to the Soroka Medical Center [in Beersheva] and treated between last December and January this year for burns. Taking advantage of the fact that she had access into Israel and was due to be seen by doctors at the hospital on Monday, she agreed to a request by Al Aksa Brigade commanders in Gaza to don the explosives and blow up as instructed, in a “crowded area in the hospital.”

Al Aksa Brigade, of course, is affiliated with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas’s Fatah movement. The brigade’s commanders appear not to be very afraid of violating his “truce.”

A senior Israeli security official said human rights groups have often harshly criticized Israel in the past for carrying out inspections on sick Palestinians requiring medical treatment in Israel. “Our dilemma is how to differentiate between those who really seek treatment and sometimes those who may suffer from terminal illnesses and figure they have nothing to lose by agreeing to carry out a suicide attack,” the official said. “They are the ones we most fear, as they have nothing to lose, they gain popularity by becoming shahids (martyrs), and they are assured that their families will be taken care of. They are the ones we most fear,” he said.

Several examples in which Palestinians took advantage of Israel’s humanitarian assistance to launch attacks include the arrest of a Hamas fugitive in Ramallah in March this year. The fugitive, a resident of Gaza, succeeded in entering the West Bank on the pretext that he was a possible kidney donor. He had planned to launch a suicide bomb attack in Israel.

One unfortunate result is that Palestinians likely will have an even harder time entering Israel for necessary medical treatment.