Wednesday, June 20, 2012

The Real Struggle

By Shai Malkah
Manhigut Yehudit Director General

Over the last week, I have been hearing from many frustrated volunteers and activists who want to know what else can be done to save the Ulpana neighborhood. I would like to broaden our perspective and talk about our struggle for all the settlements. What can we do to prevent the erosion and rolling expulsion from all of Judea and Samaria? What is our answer to unfounded and evil legal proceedings to drive Jews from their homes? And most important, how do we see the future of settlement in Judea and Samaria?

On the short term plane, we are working with the Likud ministers to advance a number of ideas that can help prevent a repeat of the Ulpana imbroglio.

1. A thorough investigation of the State Attorney's office to discover who is behind the scandalous state answer to the High Court. Clerks in the State Attorney's office who failed or intentionally sabotaged the case they were supposed to be defending, causing untold damage to the State, must be dismissed. This proceeding has already begun in the Knesset.

2. Regulation: A government decision that declares a change of its policy of destroying Jewish homes in Judea and Samaria. This entails relegating the Talya Sasson Report to the garbage bin of history.

3. Establishment of a ministerial committee for settlement: Implementation of all government decisions made after the Regulation Law did not pass. New government policy on construction in Judea and Samaria. Expropriation of the Defense Minister's authority on the settlements and supervision of all the mechanisms (State Attorney, Civilian Authority, army and police) so that they will internalize and implement the new government policy.

4. Protection for those Arabs who sell their property to Jews. Currently, any Arab who sells property to Jews receives the death penalty. The State must guarantee the well-being of Arab sellers and protect them from this intolerable and immoral reality. Problems with the Ulpana neighborhood and Machpelah House in Hebron and other houses, as well, could have been solved in a more just, ethical and expeditious manner if the State would take responsibility for the welfare of those who cooperate with Israel.

All of this does not mean that we should remove our eyes for even one moment from the source of the problem and its true solution. Most of the Likud ministers and certainly all those Likud MKs who voted in favor of the Regulation Law did not want to see the settlements destroyed. On the contrary, they would be more than happy to be members of a government that would understand that this is our Land and we must build and develop it.

It seems that reality (G-d) is forcing us to establish a faith-based alternative for leadership for Israel. Without it, we simply will not be able to hold on to our Land. We must make the fateful decision: Either this is our Land and we annex it, or we will be "conquerors" in a "foreign" land.

This is the time to strengthen our presence in the Likud and to empower the faith-based alternative for Israel. The fact that the Likud has currently underwritten leftist policy is not a heavenly decree. We, the Likud members, are the majority of the country and we want to see our Land built – not destroyed.

Currently, there is a drive to convince people to leave the Likud and join the NRP Jewish Home party. This move would be totally self-defeating: Should we really surrender our influence and stronghold in the ruling party in exchange for the chance that perhaps somebody will be elected to a high place in one of the remnants of the sectorial parties of the Religious Zionist community? Remember, it is possible to be a member of only one party at a time. If a person leaves the Likud, he will have to wait 16 months to renew his membership and may miss the upcoming elections and the chance to truly affect Israel's future.

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