P. 181

The Commander of the "Haganah" in Jerusalem, David Shaltiel, wrote a special daily order:
Murder has yet again cloaked itself in the devil's deviousness. Such blows only unite us, all the Jews. In the battle for the Jewish state, the deviousness of murder shall not decide the battle. Strength and justice shall prevail. Our strength and righteousness are with us. We shall shake off the pain of the blow, fight harder and prevail.
The journalists also wrote in a similar vein, expressing grief over the disaster and calling for strengthening the forces and the ranks. "Al HaMishmar" titled its main editorial "Murderers of Jerusalem":
The hand of the murderers did not just target the heart of Hebrew Jerusalem. This time they targeted the heart of the Hebrew nation, in the house where its leadership resides, where its highest institutions operate. The murderers failed to achieve their goal. We mourn for the precious victims but our spirit is strong and we are resolved: Increase alertness, strengthen our guard, fight back.
It was written in the editorial of the "Davar" Newspaper:
The bomb in the courtyard of the National Institutions in Jerusalem is further proof of how hard this war is and how hard its damages might be. The demand now is – to persevere, to stand, to increase vigilance, to promote strength so that our victory is swift, so that the campaign end quickly and that this horror and Catastrophe are cast away from this land.
The greatest damages were to the offices of Keren Hayesod and the adjacent rooms, where the members of the Jewish National Council sat. Many documents, including historic and highly important documents, were burned and lost. All the written and archival material in the office of Leib Yaffe, the Director-General of Keren Hayesod, was destroyed and lost. Other offices in the building were less damaged, and after the smoke cleared the uninjured employees as well as some of the lightly injured returned to them – and tried to get life back on course to the best of their ability.
Hundreds of Jerusalem residents rushed to the damaged building, and as usual for such cases, had hindered more than helped. Units of the "Haganah" and men of "Mishmar HaAm" were called to the site and were forced to push back the curious bystanders. Dozens of local and foreign journalists also tried to enter the National Institutions courtyard, and only some of them were permitted entry in the initial stages of the evacuation and rescue.
At 12:00 PM, a press conference was held in the meeting hall of the building, like on any other day. The local and foreign journalists were received by two of the injured: Dr. Walter Eytan, who was lacerated on his forehead and left cheek, and the Agency Spokesman Gershon Hirsh (later Avner, who served as Cabinet Secretary), who appeared with a bandage on his eye. After the press conference, he travelled to the hospital where it was determined that his injury is more severe than was previously thought, and he was hospitalized for several long weeks.

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