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Anchored by Jake Tapper, The Lead airs at 4 p.m. ET on CNN.

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November 18th, 2014
06:28 PM ET

Terrorist attack in Israel kills 3 Americans, others

(CNN) - A terror attack in Jerusalem has left three American rabbis and a British one dead, butchered during their morning prayers, along with a policeman who was critically wounded in the attack and eventually succumbed from his wounds.

Israeli police are still piecing together the details of the attack, but the pictures convey abject horror from inside a place of worship: the hallway streaked red from the carnage, holy garments used in prayer strewn across the floor, sitting in pools of blood.

The three rabbis with dual American-Israeli citizenship were Moshe Twersky from Boston, Aryeh Kupinsky from Detroit and Kalman Levine from Kansas City. They were in the middle of praying this morning when two Palestinian terrorists stormed their synagogue, wielding axes, meat cleavers, knives and a gun. They massacred them, along with British-Israeli rabbi Avraham Goldberg. Police then shot and killed the assailants.

Mere hours after their deaths, hundreds of Jewish Israelis flooded the streets to mourn their loss, flanking hearses carrying the bodies of the slain rabbis.

No groups have claimed direct responsibility for the terror attack, the deadliest in Jerusalem since 2008. But Hamas, which controls Gaza and which both the israeli and U.S. governments consider a terror group, applauded the assault.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was quick to blame Hamas, accusing the group of inciting Palestinians. He swore to respond to the attack with a heavy hand.

CNN's senior international correspondent Ben Wedeman joined "The Lead" live from Jerusalem to discuss the horrific attack.

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