JERUSALEM, Israel -- In a terror rampage early Monday morning, a Palestinian Arab terrorist injured eight Israelis in south Tel Aviv.
After stealing a taxi, the attacker rammed border policemen at a road block set up to protect an end-of-the-summer party with 2,000 Israeli high school students in attendance.
"I have no doubt he was trying to get to the kids," Aviv Krief, one of the security guards at the club, told YNet news.
"I'm afraid to think what would have happened if he succeeded. There were thousands of kids there," he said. "It was a miracle they weren't hurt."
Krief said at first he didn't think it was a terror attack.
"I stood at the roadblock and suddenly he came out of nowhere with the cab, driving fast toward us," he recounted. "He hit a police officer, then me and then he stopped."
"I didn't think it was a terror attack. I thought it was an accident," Krief said. "He was driving about 100km [about 62 mph] an hour. I didn't know it was intentional. I thought it might be a kid we didn't allow in doing something stupid."
Eyewitnesses heard the driver shout "Allahu akbar" (Allah is greater) -- the traditional Islamic cry before a terror attack -- as he jumped out of the car and began stabbing passersby.
Border police wrestled him to the ground and took him into custody, stopping off at a hospital where he was treated for light injuries.
The 20-year-old from Nablus -- biblical Shechem -- told investigators he planned the attack and purchased the knife himself.
Police said he spent at least one day in Tel Aviv, where he learned about the party and decided the teens would be his target. But he didn't plan on the roadblock, he said during interrogation, which police believe helped prevent a much more deadly outcome.
Three of the injured remain in serious condition, Tel Aviv's Icholov hospital reported.