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September 16, 2014 / 21 Elul, 5774
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Building in Samaria or in the Sea

Israel must start a process of land privatization and the land’s return to its natural owners: the general public.
MK Moshe-Feiglin

MK Moshe Feiglin

With Prime Minister Netanyahu’s participation, the Knesset recently held a special session on Israel’s housing crisis.

In my speech, I presented a special report that proves that if the current construction and natural growth trends continue, the land reserved for construction in Israel’s pre-1967 borders will be completely depleted in less than two decades.

Here are two little-known facts:

1) Every year, demand for new construction equals the size of the city of Ramat Gan.

2) Over the past seven years, the National Master Plan’s population growth forecast underestimated Israel’s population growth by no less than 700,000 people. In other words, we have a population the size of one and a half Tel Avivs that nobody dreamed of less than a decade ago. This trend, thank God, continues.

We can summarize the housing problem with one simple question:

Is Israel the people’s land, or does it belong to the state?

In a state that enjoys true liberty, the answer is clear: most of its land is privately owned. But in Israel, the opposite is true. This is what brings about the Israel Land Authority’s mediation, the mad taxation, and the impossible heavy-handedness in the authorization and licensing process – all factors that drive the price of housing sky high.

The solution is to enter a process of land privatization and the land’s return to its natural owners: the general public. The Land of Israel for the nation of Israel – just as the Torah of Israel, which demands our liberty, directs.

When we ask whose land this is, we touch upon national ownership. Actually, as reflected in the Special Report, even if we solve all the aforementioned problems, we will have an overflow population in 15 years if current trends continue.

The real solution, and apparently the only intrinsic solution, is to understand that the Land of Israel belongs to the nation of Israel – both on a private and national basis. The Land of Israel belongs to the people of Israel before it belongs to the state of Israel. It belongs to the nation of Israel – and no other nation.

The only viable solution is to build modern, metropolitan housing on the western slopes of the Judea, Benjamin and Samaria regions. These areas are a short commute from Israel’s commerce and industry hub.

Thus we have two choices: either we understand that the entire land is ours and we build many more Modiins on the slopes of western Samaria – just one half hour from Israel’s large cities – or we build in the sea.

About the Author: Moshe Feiglin is the Deputy Speaker of the Knesset and a member of Israel's Security and Defense Committee. He heads the Manhigut Yehudit ("Jewish Leadership") faction of Israel's governing Likud party. He is the founder of Manhigut Yehudit and Zo Artzeinu and the author of two books: "Where There Are No Men" and "War of Dreams." Feiglin served in the IDF as an officer in Combat Engineering and is a veteran of the Lebanon War. He lives in Ginot Shomron with his family.


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4 Responses to “Building in Samaria or in the Sea”

  1. Leo Erwin says:

    MOSHE…YOU KNOW BUILDING IN THE SEA IS NOT REASONABLE…PERHAPS SOMETHING SIMPLE , LIKE MORE HOUSING FOR HUMANITY OF ISRAEL AND KNOCK LOOSE SOME SHEKELS FROM SOME OF THOSE MONEY MONGERS…AND SETTLE G=DS LAND. BEFORE YOU ALL GET ANYTHING DONE 5 MORE GENERATIONS WILL PASS AND NOTHING…MORONIC TO HAVE ALL THAT LAND AND PEOPLE HOMELESS, LET ALONE HUNGARY.IT IS MORE MORONIC TO HAVE THE CONSTANT HARPING ABOUT HAVING NOTHING WHEN IN FACT YOU HAVE IT ALL.

  2. Bill Bilek says:

    The goal of the First Zionist Congress was to "establish for the Jewish people a publicly and legally assured home in Palestine." It is first important to re-achieve that "public and legal" assurance by adopting the Levy Report, and launching a vociferous, vocal, active hasbara campaign, to explain the legal ramifications of standing international law.

    Simply posting articles such as this one, without repeated and repeating legal facts, risks those with malevolence in their hearts ascribing motives such as "greed", and invoking such terms as "lebensraum".

  3. It is no new building in the sea, in Venice, Holland, Dubai, etc:, this day will come in Israel, we are growing.

  4. Anonymous says:

    I have yet to see the argument for Jewish rights demanded- we have every right to build on our land. It is the arabs who have forbidden us to live in Judea and Samaria if they should obtain the land, God forbid. When you mention the land of Israel belonging to the people, that depends on which Jews you talk to. The left have the notion that we do not own it, and that we should give it up to the Arabs for the sake of peace. This is fallacious argument of course, but it is there. We have to again reassert our rights, and in my estimation, bring back revisionist zionism. Teach it to our children, write about it in the papers, shout it out to the world. We need to unify under the banner of Zionism, our jewish homeland. Only this will unite all of us. We must remind our brethren that we are again facing a world that is hostile and dangerous, and one that will stab us in the back rather than have to look at us and face us squarely in the face.

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