Photo Credit: Miriam Alster/FLASH90
Mayor of Ma'aleh Admumim Benny Kashriel (R)

After numerous postponements, the bill annexing Ma’ale Adumim, an Israeli city in Judea, some four miles from Jerusalem, creating an urban Jewish gap across the heart of a future Palestinian State, is likely to be brought to a vote at the Ministerial Legislative Committee this Sunday, Ha’aretz reported on Wednesday.

The bill’s sponsor, MK Yoav Kisch (Likud), wanted to submit it to the committee for a vote several weeks ago, but Prime Minister Netanyahu torpedoed the move, citing the need to avoid upsetting President Trump by acting unilaterally on issues that are entirely outside the purview of US foreign policy.

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Now that Trump has declared his official disinterest in how a resolution of the conflict between Israel and the PA would be reached, Kisch plans to confront the ministers with his bill, in an attempt to bring it to a preliminary Knesset vote before Passover.

Passover is the holiday marking the time the Jews disavowed their enslavement to a foreign empire, placing their trust instead in their Father in Heaven.

Even if the committee confirms the bill, it would probably be too late to present it to the plenum before Purim, a holiday marking the time the Jews overcame the hostile machinations of an empire through an appeal to their Father in Heaven.

MK Kisch’s bill imposes Israeli law on the city of Ma’ale Adumim, which for close to three decades has been under martial law, like all the other Israeli towns and villages in Judea and Samaria. As such, in a state that perpetuates their legal status as occupied territory, these towns and villages will remain forever vulnerable to the malicious rulings of a Supreme Court which encourages dubious claims against them from doubtful Arab individuals on their land.

Freeing the Israeli communities in Judea and Samaria from Army rule would also force those claims to exhaust the judicial process before going to the Supreme Court, which has always ended in failure due to sketchy documentation and unreliable testimonies.

The threat against a future Palestinian State is based on the fact that the four-mile stretch of land dubbed E1 by the Oslo accords, between Ma’ale Adumim and Jerusalem, would eventually come under Israeli law, too, following the annexation of the young city. Seeing as E1 is situated at the narrowest segment of the “west bank,” the very future of Israeli-Palestinian relations depends on who gets to rule over it. Should the PA get to bring it under its wings, say good-bye to a contiguous block of settlements; should it become part of Israel, the Palestinian dream of statehood would be cut in half.

Which is why MK Kisch recently told Ha’aretz that he was willing to let E1 remain as it was, outside Israel proper, making the Israeli Ma’ale Adumim an island in an otherwise disputed territory.

Ma’aleh Adumim Mayor Benny Kashriel has been on the war path against coalition ministers who may be doubtful regarding what could be described as the boldest Israeli move in the territories since a Labor government annexed eastern Jerusalem. On Wednesday the mayor and several enthusiastic youths handed out leaflets with the cellphone numbers of legislative committee ministers, to text them encouraging words on the need to impose Israeli sovereignty in Ma’ale Adumim.

As Kashriel put it, “there’s no such thing as proper timing, and I expect the prime minister and the ministers to approve the bill come Sunday.”

Ladies and gentlemen, place your bets.

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