-- GOA calls for implementing this lesson in airplane cockpits

(Springfield, VA) -- "For the second time in three weeks, an Israeli citizen abruptly ended a terrorist threat on Monday by shooting the suicide bomber," said GOA Director of Communications Erich Pratt.

"The Israelis have learned how to deal with terrorist thugs. Whether it is citizens on a city street or pilots in the air, guns in the hands of good people are saving lives in that country.

"Israel has a murder rate that most nations of the world can only dream about. Even though they live in the midst of a war zone, private citizens help keep the peace and serve as a great deterrent to the criminal-terrorist element.

"Israelis realize that their police cannot be everywhere," Pratt said. "They keep their murder rate low by letting the potential victims -- that is, private citizens who are at the scene of the crime -- kill terrorists long before the police can show up."

On Monday, a shoe salesman was eating dinner with his wife in a Jerusalem nightclub, when a terrorist opened fire with an automatic firearm. William Hazan grabbed a pistol out of his wife's purse and shot the Palestinian, thus ending the terror. The gunman had explosives strapped to his body, but was effectively prevented from detonating the devices.

This heroic action comes on the heels of another episode two weeks ago when an alert citizen shot dead a terrorist who tried to set off an explosive device in an Efrat supermarket. The alert customer was praised for saving the lives of many people.

"At a time when we're debating whether pilots should have guns in planes, it seems quite obvious that we could learn a thing or two from the Israelis," Pratt said. "Ever since their pilots started carrying guns, they have had ZERO hijackings. Moreover, their citizens can carry guns freely, and they frequently kill terrorists far before the police can arrive."

This week, two top officials in the Bush administration publicly stated their opposition to arming pilots. "But Israel's experience shows that the idea works," Pratt said. "Guns in good people's hands save lives."

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