Sadly we must discuss what it the deadliest terror attack in Jerusalem for a long time.
Four Israelis with dual citizenship to America and one to the UK were killed this morning by two Arab residents of what is commonly referred to East Jerusalem.
The victims, and eight wounded, were in a synagogue in a religious neighborhood in West Jerusalem for early morning prayers and were attacked by two Arab young men who were cousins.
Police arrived on the scene quickly and are said to have encountered the two attackers outside. A gunfight ensured and the attackers were killed and two officers wounded – one critically in the head (who incidentally is an Arab traffic policeman and has a months old baby daughter at home).
There had been speculation about a third man possibly being involved but this was latter dismissed.
International condemnation has been plenteous in response to the tragedy, as thousands joined in on the funerals held this afternoon for the victims.
Israeli Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu was quick to point the finger, blaming the attack squarely upon Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas who he says is inciting terror.
Mr. Abbas condemned the attack, and violence towards worshipers and civilians.
Oddly, Israel's head of the Shin Bet intelligence service contradicted Mr. Netanyahu saying that the President does not incite violence against Israelis.
Critics have been pointing to Mr. Netanyahu for squeezing political gains from the attack, but he also oversaw a Security Council meeting soon after the attack and said Israel will respond with a heavy hand.
Netanyahu ordered the homes of the terrorists demolished – this after police spent much of the day rounding up family members of the attackers. Large bodies of police were seen around several Arab neighborhoods of Jerusalem with ensuing clashes.
West Bank Palestinians also were in conflict both with police and settlers in multiple areas.
Many Palestinians feel that the attack occurred because of revenge for the death the night before of an Arab bus driver of an Israeli public bus found hung within.
Witnesses say six Jewish youth were seen at the scene in confrontation with the driver. The police say there was no foul play involved and described the incident as a suicide.
This enraged many Israeli Arabs and Palestinians who then took to the streets.
Curiously, the police have not released the body to the family for burial, and a Palestinian pathologist who observed the body said he disagreed with the police determination of death.
Lets pray that cool heads prevail, as Jerusalem has been suffering back and forth attacks and now appears set for some serious repercussions unless there is a 'stepping back' from the path of violence.
Thank you friends – for those prays of intercession.
Middle east Correspondent