The Magen security initiative
was started in response to these attacks. Taking into consideration the high cost of hiring a security guard for every synagogue, up to $3000 a month per synagogue, and since government funding for security is limited to the so-called green areas, the Magen project trains volunteer members of every synagogue to use a firearm, thereby avoiding the high cost of hiring a security contractor. Approved by the government and endorsed by many rabbis, including the Sephardic Chief Rabbi in Israel, this project is well underway but requires more funding. The cost of training one member is a one-off fee of $2600. Please help protect Jerusalem synagogues by sponsoring a synagogue.
The wakeup call
The scene we witnessed in Har Nof was horrifying and tragic but unfortunately not the first In 2008, a Palestinian terrorist opened fire in Mercaz Harav Yeshiva; eight students were killed and eleven more wounded before the attacker was stopped. Our brothers in Israel have been living in a constant war zone where the targets are not military bases or government buildings, but schools, buses and more recently synagogues. While we may not have been able to prevent these attacks entirely, many lives could certainly have been saved had there been an armed guard on the scene.