Israeli-American border police officer, 20, killed in Jerusalem stabbing attack


((JEWISH REVIEW)) — An American-born Israeli border police officer was killed in a stabbing attack near the Old City of Jerusalem on Monday as violence has escalated during Israel’s war with Hamas in Gaza. 

Rose Lubin, 20, originally from the Atlanta area, was stabbed by a 16-year-old male from the east Jerusalem neighborhood of Issawiya. Another border police officer was also stabbed in the attack, and the attacker was shot dead. 

According to police, the assailant ran toward the officers with a knife in his hand, stabbing Lubin several times before her fellow officers shot and killed him. Haaretz reported that Lubin may have also been hit by the officers’ fire. She was evacuated to Jerusalem’s Hadassah Medical Center along with the other injured officer, and was pronounced dead several hours later.

Lubin attended public high school in Dunwoody, a northern suburb of Georgia, according to the Atlanta Jewish Times, and immigrated to Israel in 2021. Last year, she was drafted into the Israel Defense Forces, and was stationed in Jerusalem’s Old City. During her military service, she lived on Kibbutz Sa’ad, a community on the Gaza border that is near several towns massacred in Hamas’ Oct. 7 attack on Israel. 

“Rose was the most colorful, vibrant, powerful person I had the privilege of knowing. She is a true heroine of Israel,” said Roni Tabackman, Lubin’s counselor on Kibbutz Sa’ad, in a statement posted by Nefesh B’Nefesh.

Lubin’s stabbing comes amid a spike in violence in the West Bank and east Jerusalem amid Israel’s war with Hamas in Gaza. More than 130 Palestinians have been killed in clashes with Israeli forces, as have several Israelis. Last week, a police officer was seriously injured in a stabbing attack near the Old City, and an Israeli reserve soldier on leave was killed in a shooting attack en route to his home in the West Bank settlement of Einav.

Earlier in October, another Israeli-American soldier, Omer Balva, 22, was killed by a rocket fired by Hezbollah from Lebanon. Balva, who was from Maryland, had also moved to Israel after graduating from high school

In a speech she delivered in May at a Friends of the IDF gala in Atlanta, Lubin described the dangerous demands of her border police service. She mentioned her unit’s charge to defend Jerusalem, and said she derived personal meaning from protecting Jews praying at the Western Wall in the Old City. 

“There are generations of my family who could have been here today if there was an Israel during the Holocaust,” she said. “I feel an obligation to them to fulfill the opportunities they didn’t have. It’s our duty to watch over the Jews who are living the dream of walking to the Kotel on Shabbat.”