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October 1, 2016 / 28 Elul, 5776
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Arik Is Dead



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The late Arik Sharon as I would like to remember him, leading the brigade that crossed over to the Egyptian side of the Suez Canal during the 1973 Yom Kippur War (here with  Defense Minister Dayan).

The late Arik Sharon as I would like to remember him, leading the brigade that crossed over to the Egyptian side of the Suez Canal during the 1973 Yom Kippur War (here with Defense Minister Dayan).



Which is why it came as such a shock to the settlers and to all the lovers of Eretz israel, when, in May 2003, Prime Minister Sharon endorsed the Road Map for Peace proposed by the U.S., the E.U. and Russia, starting a dialogue with the PLO’s Mahmoud Abbas towards the establishment of a Palestinian state.

Around that time, Sharon was investigated for his involvement in the Greek Island Affair and illegal fundraising during the 1999 election campaign. In the Greek Island Affair, Sharon was accused of promising (as Foreign Minister) to help Israeli businessman David Appel in a development project on a Greek island in exchange for large payments to Sharon’s son Gilad.

Shortly thereafter, Sharon decided to impose a unilateral withdrawal from the Gaza Strip, including the removal of some 8,600 Jewish residents in the settlement block known as Gush Katif.

Miraculously, the corruption charges against him were dropped due to “lack of evidence.”

This plan was met with opposition inside his own Likud party, and so, on November 24, 2005, Sharon left his Likud party—of which he was the leader—and announced the establishment of Kadima, with many from the left wing of Likud, and right-leaning Labor politicians.

Kadima was created for one reason – the expulsion of 8,600 Jews from gush Katif. In August, 2005, the IDF and the police deported these Jews, many of whom had been placed there by Minister Ariel Sharon. Their homes, synagogues, hothouses and industrial structures were demolished as part of Israel’s unilateral “disengagement.” Whatever had been left behind, was burned down by the Gaza Arabs.

These unfortunate Jews, some of whom still live as refugees in their own country, impoverished and isolated, couldn’t help feeling that Sharon’s stroke, only a few months after he has inflicted so much pain and suffering on them, had to have been meted by a Higher Power.

To date, most of the public servants who were involved in the Gush Katif uprooting have been demoted from their jobs, some because of corruption and criminal behavior, others because the voters have turned their backs on them.

Sharon’s death may serve as a message from the Divine, coming as it has done when some in the government, may they all live to 120, are considering a far wider expulsion of Jews from Judea and Samaria.

 

Yori Yanover

About the Author: Yori Yanover has been a working journalist since age 17, before he enlisted and worked for Ba'Machane Nachal. Since then he has worked for Israel Shelanu, the US supplement of Yedioth, JCN18.com, USAJewish.com, Lubavitch News Service, Arutz 7 (as DJ on the high seas), and the Grand Street News. He has published Dancing and Crying, a colorful and intimate portrait of the last two years in the life of the late Lubavitch Rebbe, (in Hebrew), and two fun books in English: The Cabalist's Daughter: A Novel of Practical Messianic Redemption, and How Would God REALLY Vote.


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