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Jerusalem’s Mayor Urges Citizens to Go Armed

The man you see above is Mr. Nir Barkat. He's the Mayor of Jerusalem. He is a former Paratrooper in the IDF who achieved the rank of Major during his time in service and a successful businessman. You may recall him from news reports aired last February, when he intervened in the attempted stabbing of a Jewish victim by a Palestinian attacker in Tzahal square.

Just this month Barkat encouraged Jerusalem's residents to carry guns while out and about in the city due the increased tension in the area. Here he is practicing what he preaches. Yes, he is in jeans and a t-shirt carrying a weapon on the street.

Mayor Nir Barkat goes armed

This, according to news sources in Israel, his gun permit:

Mayor Nir Barkat gun permit

There have been an escalating number of attacks on civilians and border police in Israel as well as a number of violent protests over the last few weeks, though this has received scant coverage on major news outlets here in the U.S. Here's what he said recently in a radio interview:

“Given the current escalation [of violence] in the security situation, those with a licensed firearm who know what to do with it must go out with [their weapon]. It's an imperative…Possessing weapons increases the confidence of residents, who that in addition to police there are many people who are not afraid to intervene.”

You read that correctly. Mayor Barkat (who apparently carries a Glock in .40 caliber) encouraged his constituents to go armed, likening it to military reserve duty and referencing the many former military personnel with operational experience in Israel's civilian population.

“Possessing weapons increases the confidence of residents, who know that in addition to police there are many people who are not afraid to intervene. If we look at the statistics in Jerusalem and elsewhere, we see that aside from the police, civilians carrying weapons have foiled terror attacks. They will increase the likelihood of fast intervention.”

This advice was echoed by police Chief Superintendent Noam Shekel, Commander of the Ashdod police station.

Quite a difference from politicians like Mayor Bloomberg and Muriel Bowser and LEOs like Cathy Lanier, eh?

More info here:

Although firearms in Israel are common, the laws governing the purchasing of guns (they have a strict vetting process), as well as the permit and carry process, are surprisingly restrictive — and there is no “concealed carry” provision the way we have it here in the U.S. Weapons are carried openly (the Bang Switch wrote an interesting article on this a couple years back if you're interested, though I cannot attest to its veracity myself).

You can follow Mayor Nir Barkat on Twitter: @NirBarkat.

Hat tip to Daniel Barak and Emily Miller.

Here is an example of recent events.

WARNING: Graphic contentThis morning, a terrorist went on a violent rampage in Jerusalem with a vehicle and a butcher's knife. This is the danger we face. This is the result of Palestinian incitement.

Posted by Israel Defense Forces on Tuesday, October 13, 2015

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