The funeral procession of Rabbi Hillel Lieberman, attended by well over 1,000 people, was attacked by Palestinians this afternoon. The two-pronged ambush attack included rifle shots from the Arab village of Kafr Kalil and a barrage of rocks on the participants. Two Jewish women were lightly wounded by the shots, and were evacuated to the hospital. The Jews responded with gunfire, and large army reinforcements, including a tank, quickly arrived. Army snipers and submachine guns fired towards the source of the fire in Kafr Kalil. When the Palestinian firing did not abate, helicopters and additional tanks were sent in. Many ground forces were deployed in the area. After the funeral ended, Arabs fired upon IDF forces from another direction, and the army prevented the participants from leaving Yitzhar for about an hour. The shooting died down about two hours after the beginning of the attack.

    In order to allow the funeral procession to continue safely, army jeeps were interspersed with the mourners' cars along the route to the cemetery in the Shomron town of Yitzhar. The funeral departed from Rabbi Lieberman's hometown of Elon Moreh after eulogies by Rabbi Zevulun Lieberman of New York, the deceased's father; Elon Moreh Rabbi Elyakim Levanon; and former Sephardic Chief Rabbi Mordechai Eliyahu.

    Rabbi Hillel Lieberman was murdered by Palestinian Arabs this past Shabbat; after being told that Joseph's Tomb was in flames, he attempted to make his way to the holy site. His wife Yael told Arutz-7 yesterday, "If there is no Joseph's Tomb, then there is no Hillel! If he would have returned home [after hearing the news of the destruction], I would have been totally confused. I would have said, 'Excuse me, I don't understand, Joseph's Tomb is burning there, and you're here?' I wouldn't have believed it, I wouldn't have believed it..."

Arutz 7 News, Wednesday, Oct 11, 2000



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