Israelis Turn To Self-Defense As Anxiety Rises Over Knife Attacks

Business is booming at the Haboleshet Spy Shop in central Tel Aviv. Mor, who has worked for six months at the self-defense store, says customers laugh when he tells them that the shop’s stock of pepper spray, tasers and batons is sold out. The past two weeks have been the “craziest and busiest time,” Mor says in a phone interview with Newsweek

The shop, one of the only stores that stocks self-defense equipment in Israel’s largest city, is selling 20 to 40 batons and 50 to 100 canisters of pepper spray a day, Mor says. In previous times, that would have amounted to three weeks’ worth of stock.

The amused reaction of Mor’s customers masks a growing anxiety over the recent wave of stabbings committed by Palestinians on Israel’s streets. Eight Israelis have been killed and dozens wounded in the knife attacks across the country in the past two weeks and now worried civilians are turning to self-defense measures in greater numbers. Dozens of Palestinians, including some attackers, have also been killed in subsequent violence.

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