TEL AVIV – A new video that was released Monday shows the moment an Israeli pizzeria owner smashed a Palestinian terrorist over the head with a pizza tray during a stabbing attack in the central Israeli city of Petah Tikva last week.
A 21-year-old Palestinian from Qalqilya stabbed an Arab bus driver at a shwarma restaurant next door to the pizzeria, apparently mistaking him for a Jew. Moments later the terrorist entered Pizza Nepolita and Shlomi Madar, the owner, grabbed a heavy wooden pizza tray and started pounding the terrorist with it.
“I heard screams coming from the shwarma shop two stores down and I immediately understood what was happening,” Madar, 24, told the Times of Israel Monday, hours after the incident.
“When he ran in front of my shop and I saw the knife, I quickly swung down the countertop so he couldn’t get to me,” said Madar.
The knifeman tried to attack Madar multiple times but ended up just scratching the countertop. “At that point, I picked up the pizza platter and slammed it into his nose as hard as I could. He fell backward, dropped the knife and started running away.”
Madar then chased the attacker who was subsequently tackled by two other pedestrians.
Madar said the countertop had perhaps saved his life.
“Had it not been for the countertop, I don’t know if I would still be here,” he said.
In an act of serendipity, the pizzaria owner said he had only installed the countertop less than two months ago after a drunk customer pulled a knife on him. “While I didn’t need to use a pizza platter, that guy’s fate was similar to today’s terrorist,” he said, smiling.
The Israeli-Arab victim of the attack was hospitalized with moderate to severe wounds.
The terrorist later told investigators that he “did it for al-Aqsa” – i.e., it was an act of vengeance for Israel’s security measures on the Temple Mount.
Israelis have been wildly creative in recent years when it comes to fending off terrorists. Objects that have been used to thwart Palestinian attacks include a selfie stick, an umbrella, a guitar and Nunchucks.