Global Knife Attack Frenzy as Hamas ‘Day of Rage’ Unfolds

Denis Charlet/AFP via Getty Images
Denis Charlet/AFP via Getty Images

Frenzied knife attacks were reported in China and France on Friday after Hamas called for the 13th to be a global “day of rage” in response to the group’s ongoing war with Israel.

The attack in France, which killed at least one person, was linked to the conflict between Israel and Hamas, according to Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin. Local media reported that the 20-year-old assailant—a Chechen who was known to the authorities as an Islamist radical—shouted “Allahu Akbar” during an attack on multiple people at a school.

The Chinese attack couldn’t be immediately linked to the war but the victim was an employee of the Israeli embassy.

The call for a “day of rage” prompted security alerts all over the world with Jewish schools and synagogues from Palo Alto to London and Aukland closing for the day while the American authorities increased security measures in major cities and at the U.S. Capitol.

In Beijing, an Israeli embassy staffer was attacked with a knife in broad daylight before being taken to the hospital. Chinese authorities have not released a motive for the attack, which comes after Israel admonished China for failing to condemn the unprecedented Hamas attacks that led to at least 1,300 Israeli soldiers and civilians being killed.

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Israel’s Foreign Ministry said in a statement that the embassy worker—who was not named—was in a stable condition, adding that the attack did not take place inside the embassy compound. Disturbing video footage purportedly showing the incident began circulating online Friday, appearing to show a man screaming and bleeding as he’s repeatedly stabbed by another man.

A witness said the attack took place at around 2:20 p.m. local time, according to the South China Morning Post, with the victim allegedly helped by an English-speaking passerby. Another witness who heard screaming said he saw a tall, thin man wearing a white top leave the scene carrying a knife.

It came after the Israeli Foreign Ministry said it expressed “deep disappointment” in a call with the Chinese envoy to the Middle East over Beijing’s failure to condemn Hamas’ weekend attack.

The attack in France, at a high school in the northern city of Arras, left a teacher dead and two others seriously injured, Darmanin said. According to French network BFMTV, the assailant’s brother was also arrested “near another high school.”

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In Paris, protesters clashed with police, according to clips posted to social media. In New York, a “Day of Rage” protest took place near Times Square. Those on the far-right—namely, Donald Trump Jr. and GOP Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene—suggested Americans stock up on ammunition to defend themselves.

Overall, however, no widespread, organized violence had taken place by Friday afternoon. Still, extensive preparations had been made in advance to shield against the worst.

Three Jewish schools in California planned to close on Friday owing to the security concerns, while New York Mayor Eric Adams said Thursday night that law enforcement would be increased at potentially vulnerable locations. He nevertheless encouraged residents to continue attending their places of worship and sending their children to school. “New York City will do whatever it takes to keep our people safe,” he said.

Across Israel, Gaza, and the West Bank, violent incidents also surged on Friday. Police shot and killed four Palestinians trying to blow a hole in a West Bank border with explosives on Friday, as fears mounted that the war may expand to another front, The Times of Israel reported. An Israeli person shot a Palestinian at point blank range near the village of At-Tuwani south of Hebron, Haaretz reported.

Earlier this week, Hamas urged Palestinians to partake in a “general mobilization,” encouraging them to “demonstrate, mobilize, and clash” with Israeli troops in the West Bank, according to Reuters. Some took up the call, leading to clashes with the Israeli Defense Forces.

The IDF arrested 220 wanted Palestinians, including 130 they claimed were affiliated with Hamas, The Times of Israel reported. A day before, the IDF said they arrested 32 Hamas members, including senior figures, in Hebron.

Since Saturday, Israelis have killed at least 44 West Bank Palestinians, according to the Palestinian Authority health ministry. Attacks in Gaza have killed at least 1,799 people, the Gaza Health Ministry said Friday.

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