Shocked at the murder of MP Jo Cox in the run-up to June’s Brexit referendum, some British lawmakers have decided to learn the Israeli martial art of Krav Maga to defend themselves from possible violent attacks, the Daily Mail reports.
The parliamentarians and their staffers were offered free classes by Parli-Training, a company that normally provides advice on lobbying and speech writing, and two MPs and 18 parliamentary aides attended the first training session.
‘We are teaching them techniques where if someone comes at them with a knife or a gun, they can disarm the weapons and then run. They are not being taught how to fight,” company founder Mendora Ogbogbo said.
“Another technique we are teaching them is called the ‘rhino,’ where they know how to cover the vulnerable parts of their heads when someone is punching them. This will give them a vital three or four minutes before someone intervenes.”
The lessons focus on the most common forms of physical attacks, including a “punch to the head”; “a bottle, glass or ashtray to the head”; and a “slash with a knife, most commonly a 3-4 inch lock blade or kitchen utility knife.”
Krav Maga was first developed in 1940s Israel by Hungarian Jew Imi Lichtenfeld, and borrows techniques from boxing, wrestling and jiu jistu.
Krav Maga immediately become part of the Israeli army’s doctrine. Several foreign militaries have since adopted the method, recruiting former Israeli army instructors to teach their troops.
Since Labour MP Cox was shot on June 16 in her Yorkshire constituency, another parliamentarian has been threatened.
Luciana Berger, a Jewish British Labour politician and MP for Liverpool was threatened that she would “get it like Jo Cox” and “watch your back Jewish scum, regards your friend the Nazi” by John Nimmo, 28, who was arrested and charged with two counts of causing stress and anxiety.
Berger told the court during the hearing, “The biggest concern was not knowing who this was, for all I knew the offender could have resided next door to me. I have had anti-Semitic messages before, but to have both together, alongside reference to my colleague Jo Cox, was terrifying.”