On Monday, Channel 4 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania interviewed Dr. Jeff Cohen, President of Allegheny General Hospital, who is Jewish and a member of the Tree of Life synagogue, who helped supervise the treatment of the shooter who committed the worst massacre of Jews in America’s history on Saturday morning at that synagogue. Asked what he saw when he met the shooter after the shooter had been treated, Cohen displayed no evident rage or bitterness, but simply gave a response that was the quintessential Jewish response when Jewish doctors wind up treating enemies of the Jewish people: that their job is to treat the patient with every means at their disposal.
Cohen stated: “Yesterday I went up to meet him, and I was just curious as to ‘who is this guy?’ And quite honestly, he’s just a guy. And he’s … people say that he’s evil, he’s this … he’s some mother’s son. And how did he get from that to where he is today? That’s going to be a large debate that we have to wrestle with as a society.”
The interviewer commented, “Effectively, you were sort of at the head of a team that saved his life.”
Cohen responded, “It may be a bit of an overstatement, but yes. He was severely injured and he got great care here. Many of the people that attended to him were Jewish. And they’re heroes. They did like the cops did; they did their job. They went and they confronted the problem and they were true to their core beliefs; and I’m very proud of them.”
The interviewer asked, “And as a doctor, but also as a parishioner of the synagogue, and you looked into his eyes, what did you see?”
Cohen replied, “I just looked at him and he’s like a lot of people that come in here. They’re scared; they’re confused; they don’t quite understand it. But once again, my job isn’t to judge him; other people give that — that’s a pretty awesome responsibility. My job is to take care of him.”
Cohen’s response is not unique in the annals of Jewish doctors; Israeli doctors have time and again treated the terrorists who have targeted the Jewish people and been injured in the attempt.
In 2015, The Times of Israel reported, “Medics at terror sites must treat the wounded according to the severity of their injuries, even if that means helping an attacker before his victims, the Israeli Medical Association said in rules published this week. The new rules, formulated by the IMA’s Ethics Bureau, came into effect at the beginning of the week and replace an earlier directive based on the principle of ‘charity begins at home,’ which enabled medical professionals to treat victims first, the Hebrew-language Israel Hayom newspaper reported Wednesday.”
An example, as reported by The Times of Israel:
Accused Hamas terrorist Abdelrahman al-Shaludi was brought with severe gunshot wounds by ambulance to Shaare Zedek Medical Center on October 22. He had been shot by police as he tried to flee the scene at a crowded Jerusalem light rail station where he had allegedly run over bystanders, killing two of them, including a 3-month-old baby, Chaya Zissel Braun. One of Shaludi’s victims, an injured woman, was transported to the hospital at the same time. Doctors at Shaare Zedek opted to treat the terrorist first. As the doctors saw it, it wasn’t really a choice. Shaludi’s condition was more critical, so he needed more urgent medical attention, regardless of what he had done.
Video of Dr. Cohen below: