At least two Palestinians armed with knives stabbed the mother, father and three of the children, aged, 11, three and a baby of a month in their sleep at Itamar, south of Nablus early Saturday. Two small children were not attacked. Their sister aged 12 found them when she returned home at 12:30 and called for help. Magen David Adom paramedics could only confirm the five deaths.
The terrorists had broken through the electronic fence guarding the settlement without setting off an alarm.
Military and police units fanned out to hunt the perpetrators and set up checkpoints. Hamas websites hailed the murder as a “heroic operation,” without taking responsibility.
DEBKAfile’s intelligence and counter-terror sources disclose that the Itamar attack was the first result of an Iran-funded secret conference in Khartoum last week of the heads of the national branches of the Muslim Brotherhood across the Arab world, at which a plan was charted for Hamas to launch a multi-casualty terrorist assaults against Israel on both sides of the Green Line – over and above missile attacks from the Gaza Strip in order to ignite the third Palestinian uprising (intifada). The Egyptian Brotherhood is the parent organization of Hamas.
This decision was a facet of a comprehensive plan drawn up in Khartoum for Brotherhood activists to fire up the uprisings in the various Arab countries. With Iranian backing and funding, the different branches resolved to coordinate operations for using the unrest to take control of Arab capitals.
Iranian intelligence officers attending the conference used the occasion to set up direct contacts with Brotherhood leaders who came from Egypt, Iraq, Tunisia, Syria, Jordan, Great Britain.
For more than a year, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Ehud Barak acceded to relentless US and European pressure to grant West Bank Palestinians almost unrestricted freedom of movement and generous aid for their economic development as a means of persuading PA chairman Mahmoud Abbas to return to the negotiating table. This policy failed in its purpose while leaving Israelis vulnerable once again to terrorist attacks. None of these alarming developments were brought to public notice in Israel. Jerusalem is still trying to pretend that Egypt remains faithful to its 1979 peace treaty, whereas nothing of those relations appears to have survived the fall of Hosni Mubarak.