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>JN
>ISRAEL FAXX
>PD OCTOBER 21, 1994 V2, #193

EYEWITNESS ACCOUNT OF BUS TERROR

"We are looking here for the parts of the bodies. We find parts of the brains, of the livers of the stomach. All parts of bodies torn away from the explosion yesterday in the bus. And you can see here in front of me now a plastic bag full of parts of bodies of people, burned, brains, etc., etc., Just for crying, no words to say to it."

Israel Plans Palestinian Crackdown

By Al Pessin (Jerusalem)

Israel says its answer to the bombing of a bus in Tel Aviv on Wednesday will be provided by its security forces, but officials will not give any details. The Israeli Government has already taken some steps in what is expected to be a broad crackdown on radical Palestinians.

Israeli troops sealed off Qalqilya in the West Bank which was home to the young man believed to have carried out Wednesday's suicide-bombing. They ordered his parents and brothers and sisters to evacuate their house, apparently so it could be destroyed -- a tactic used to discourage others from carrying out terrorist attacks.

Hamas, which claimed responsibility for the bombing, released a videotape of a man identified as 27-year-old Saleh Abdel-Rahim Assawi. On the tape, the man bids farewell to his family and says there are many like him who are willing to die in an effort to force Israel to release Hamas prisoners.

Meanwhile, Israel's Cabinet met in emergency session for several hours. Afterward, ministers gave few details of their discussions, except to say the closing of the Gaza Strip and the West Bank will continue for a long time. Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin says there needs to be more separation between Israelis and Palestinians, with fewer Palestinians traveling to Israel to work. He says the Palestinians need to develop their own economy.

The police minister received authorization to recruit 1,500 new officers. And one minister said the full answer to the terrorists would be delivered by Israel's security forces. He declined to give details, saying any such operations depend on secrecy.

The Palestinian Autonomy Authority in Gaza criticized the Cabinet's decisions, saying prolonged closure of Gaza and the occupied territories hurts Palestinians economically and creates more supporters for the radicals.

The Day After the Dizengoff Disaster

By Al Pessin (Tel Aviv)

In Tel Aviv, the grisly cleanup continued Thursday, more than 24 hours after a bomb ripped apart a bus and several stores and left 22 people dead. But Dizengoff Street, where the bomb went off, also began to show some signs of at least beginning to return to normal.

The bombing was on the main street of Tel Aviv, some call it the main street of Israel -- a narrow version of the Champs Elysee in Paris, New York's Fifth Avenue. The street -- lined with cafes and small shops -- is so much a part of Israeli history and consciousness that its name, Dizengoff, has become a verb -- to Dizengoff, to stroll and shop along Dizengoff Street.

On Thursday, there were many people on the street, but few of them were shopping. They came to see the bombed out tailor shop, the buildings with blown out windows, the sawed off tree -- and to light memorial candles lined up along a railing near the stop where a Number Five bus pulled over Wednesday morning, just before a huge explosion ripped it apart.

And some of those on Dizengoff Street Thursday came with a special purpose. They were volunteers, such as Benjamin Meyer, who was up to his ankles in broken glass and debris in the tailor shop. The volunteers, wearing rubber gloves, put the burned flesh in garbage bags. Later, it will receive proper burial. It is heart wrenching, painstaking work in the tailor shop, where two women died from the force of the explosion and a flying wall of broken glass.

Later, Meyer and a rabbi went up in a hydraulic lift to scrape blackened debris off of the facing of the building. It was impossible to determine what the debris had been, but he says he has found identifiable body parts as high up as the building's fourth floor.

Directly across the street, Eitan Cohen was counting his blessings. He is the manager of an ice cream store and Wednesday morning he was late for work. If he had been there when the bomb went off around nine o'clock, he says, he would likely have been killed. The wall at the back of his store is pockmarked where it was hit by flying glass from the windows at the front of the store. Cohen arrived at work Wednesday not long after the police got there.

"When I came in yesterday, the police let me walk into the store, there was a human hand from a man who died here. It was on the back of the store. It was about 40 feet from the place he died. It was very difficult to see it, very difficult to see."

Cohen says Dizengoff Street is usually a happy place, with street musicians, people shopping and browsing, stopping for an espresso or a beer or an ice cream. He says Wednesday and Thursday, it was like a funeral on the street, but he hopes that changes soon.

"We can't stop living. My father was killed in the Lebanon war, and we never stopped living. We lived. And we have to continue with the lives in the best way, to be happy, to smile, to sell ice cream, to eat ice cream, because we can't stop living, we mustn't stop living."

.By midday Thursday, life was already beginning to return to normal on Dizengoff Street. Cohen and his staff were doing a final cleanup, preparing to sell ice cream again. Three stores down from the search for body parts, a sidewalk cafe opened for lunch. Customers sipped cold drinks at an outdoor juice bar. Tourists browsed for T-shirts. And every few minutes a Number Five bus pulled into the stop in front of the tailor shop.


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