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July 26, 2016 / 20 Tammuz, 5776

Posts Tagged ‘E1’

PM Denies Plans to Build in E1, Blames Uri Ariel

Tuesday, December 29th, 2015

The Prime Minister’s Office released a statement on Tuesday, denying the report that Israel is planning on building thousands of housing units in the E-1 zone, east of Jerusalem.

The statement claimed that Minister Uri Ariel put forward the plans on his own accord, and they are non-binding and irrelevant.

The Palestinian Authority wants control over the E-1 area as it cuts off the city of Maaleh Adumim and the Dead Sea from Jerusalem, and provides the PA with a choke hold around Jerusalem from 3 sides.

Over the years, Netanyahu has occasionally promised to build in E1, only to later retract and block the plans, usually in a complex dance with Uri Ariel, where Ariel puts forth the E1 plans that Netanyahu had once upon a time promised.

Jewish Press News Briefs

EU Openly Funds, Builds in West Bank to Change Israel-PA Status

Sunday, February 8th, 2015

Hundreds of European Union-funded Palestinian homes, schools and other buildings have dotted the hills and valleys of Judea and Samaria – including Area C, the area placed under Israeli control by the Oslo Accords.

In fact, more than 400 Palestinian houses were illegally built with EU assistance in the area that is supposed to be under Israeli jurisdiction. The EU was a signatory to the international law designating the areas with their respective authorities.

No one has addressed the issue, which has been virtually ignored by the international community until Britain’s Daily Mail publication blasted the issue on its website, complete with incriminating photos and maps.

Jake Wallis Simons, writing for MailOnline, noted that all of the Palestinian buildings, “which have no permits, come at a cost of tens of millions of Euros in public money, a proportion of which comes from the British taxpayer.

“This has raised concerns that that EU is using valuable resources to take sides in a foreign territorial dispute.”

Wow. Points for bravery and sheer brazen audacity to you, Simons. Hope your site’s still standing next week, given the current trends in Europe and frankly, the UK.

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu instructed Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon to advance with plans to demolish the structures, Israeli media reported Friday. The order came a day after Simons posted his piece on The Mail’s website.

Some 17 such villages can be found in various locations around the West Bank (Judea and Samaria), flying the EU flag and displaying EU stickers and signs.

Brussels-based EU spokesperson Maja Kocijancic denied the construction was taking place, saying, “The EU’s funding will provide training and expertise to help the relevant Palestinian Authority (PA) ministries to plan and build new infrastructure and enable people to reclaim and rebuild their land there. To date, no construction has started yet under these programs. The EU is not funding illegal projects,” she claimed.

When presented with photograph documentation of the actual homes not only completed but those in process of being built, with the EU logos in place, however, the spokesperson declined to comment.

Shadi Othman, an on-site spokesperson for the EU in Judea, Samaria and Gaza, spoke with The Mail on the phone. He told the news outlet, “We support the Palestinian presence in Area C. Palestinian presence should not be limited to Areas A and B.

Map of illegal structures throughout Area C funded and/or built by the European Union. (Map: Regavim)

Map of illegal structures throughout Area C funded and/or built by the European Union.       (Map: Regavim)

Othman made the situation crystal clear: “Area C is part of the occupied Palestinian territory which eventually will be Palestinian land. Palestinians have a right to live there, build schools there, have economic development. This is part of the work done to build the future Palestinian state which will live side by side with Israel. It’s an international and EU interest to protect the viability of the two-state solution.

And in case anyone had any doubts about where the EU’s bias lies – or why EU officials were in such a rush to meet with Israel’s opposition leader, Labor party chairman Isaac Herzog, this Saturday on the sidelines of the Munich security conference, consider the rest of Othman’s statement and its implications for the national security of Israeli citizens:

If some people are complaining about this, we should not forget the illegal Israeli settlements that are built on occupied Palestinian territory and are illegal under international law and constitute an obstacle to peace.” (ed. note: italics added)

Hana Levi Julian

Leak of 2,600 New Homes in Eastern Jerusalem Precedes Obama-Bibi Talks

Wednesday, October 1st, 2014

Plans for a previously announced huge construction project in eastern Jerusalem were reported on Wednesday hours before the meeting between Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and President Barack Obama Wednesday.

The 2,610 apartment project was not officially announced but was leaked through social network media and by Peace Now.

In fact, it was announced in December 2012 and includes approximately 800 units for Arabs in the nearby neighborhood of Beit Safafa, but everyone is jumping all over themselves as if this is a new plan.

Housing construction in Israel can take years from their announcement until bulldozers go to work. However, establishment media report every bureaucratic step in building plans as if the project is something new, resulting in fictional numbers.

Whether or not the plans for new homes were posted – or re-posted –  again by the government or by Peace Now, as a Housing Ministry official suggested, the report is a clear message to Washington that the Palestinian Authority can forget about dividing the city along the old 1949-1967 borders.

The project is slated for the neighborhood of Givat HaMatos, near Gilo in southern Jerusalem.

Housing Ministry spokesman Ariel Rosenberg did not confirm or deny the new project. But Bloomberg News reported, “Rosenberg said in a phone call that Peace Now probably released the information today to embarrass Netanyahu before his meeting with President Barack Obama.”

Referring to plans to develop an area in Maaleh Adumim, east of Jerusalem, Peace Now stated, “Like the E1 plan, it divides the potential Palestinian state and blocks the possibility to connect the Palestinian neighborhoods in south Jerusalem with the future Palestinian state.”

The European Union stated, “At this delicate moment after the Gaza ceasefire, it is essential to avoid actions that may increase tensions, in particular in East Jerusalem.”

There really is not much tension. The Palestinian Authority’s openly anti-Semitic remarks this week, calling Israel genocidal and comparing Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu with the ISIS leaders, has reduced the entire “diplomatic process” to an illusion.

There is no tension because neither Israel nor the Palestinian Authority really cares what the other side says.

 

 

Tzvi Ben-Gedalyahu

Shocking: Zero East Jerusalem Housing Starts in 2013, Only 43 in 2012

Saturday, June 15th, 2013

Since the beginning of 2013, not a single housing unit was built in East Jerusalem, Housing and Construction Minister Uri Ariel told Army Radio last week. “The figures speak for themselves,” Ariel said. “You should ask the prime minister’s office about it.”

Prime Minister Netanyahu for his part said last week that, regarding construction in east Jerusalem, Israel is better off “being smart and not being right.” And so, in line with that statement, there has been a standing order from the PM, given under heavy American pressure and in accordance with a vehement recommendation from NSC chief Ya’akov Amidror, Minister Ariel has not been given a green light to issue new construction bids in East Jerusalem.

There is a construction freeze in the settlement blocks of Judea and Samaria as well, but the freeze in Jerusalem is particularly dramatic, in light of the fact that it has been lingering through the second term of what is supposed to be a right wing government.

Moreover, the halt on Jewish construction in the E1 area, which lies between the Ma’ale Adumim cluster and the Jerusalem municipality, has created a vacuum that’s invaded by Arab settlers.

A new report which will be issued this week by the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs is warning that continued construction freeze in E1 could eliminate the plans for a territorial contiguity between Ma’ale Adumim and Jerusalem.

The report, Understanding Israeli Interests in the E1 Area: Contiguity, Security, and Jerusalem, by former Ha’aretz reporter Nadav Shragai, explains that the opposition to building in E1 is unacceptable to Israel, since in the area between Ma’ale Adumim and Jerusalem, along the Jerusalem-Jericho road and in the E1 area, a considerable amount of illegal Palestinian construction is in progress. This illegal activity has already significantly narrowed the corridor along which the central arterial road between Jerusalem and Ma’ale Adumim runs – from two kilometers to one kilometer. The illegal construction already threatens to sever and, in the future, preclude Israeli continuity between the two cities.

Israeli avoidance of creating settlement continuity between the Jerusalem area and the Ma’ale Adumim area will inevitably give rise to another, competing, Palestinian continuity running north to south, warns the report.

It continues:

There is an almost complete Israeli consensus on the need to link Ma’ale Adumim to Jerusalem via construction in E1, and on the need to retain this territory under Israeli sovereignty within the country’s permanent borders.

Six prime ministers, from Rabin to Netanyahu, declared publicly that they would build in E1. Yet, except for the construction of the Judea-Samaria District police station, the process has not even begun because of the international community’s opposition.

Time after time, Israeli leaders proclaim their commitment to Ma’ale Adumim and the building of E1. These same leaders, however, show great deference to the position of the United States, which currently seeks to prevent construction in this area. This behavior entails a built-in contradiction: on the one hand, the message is conveyed that Israel will build in E1 because it is so vital to its interests; on the other, through nonpublic diplomatic channels, world leaders receive another message – that meanwhile Israel will bow to the international community’s opposition to this construction. This behavior makes it very difficult for those involved in Israeli public advocacy to address the world’s and the Palestinians’ objections to the E1 plan.

Sadly, when it comes to fulfilling his promises on renewing Jewish construction in east Jerusalem, Prime Minister Netanyahu is functioning not so much as a “smart rather than right” leader, but as an agent of U.S. foreign policy, as well as an agent for a Palestinian takeover of the Jewish Area C in Judea and Samaria.

Yori Yanover

PA President, Taking Cue from Obama, Demanding State Map

Friday, April 5th, 2013

After decades, perhaps centuries, in which we, Jews, have been able to count on the Arabs to rescue us from the catastrophic errors of our own leaders by committing even worse errors—as the late Abba Eban put it: The Arabs never miss an opportunity to miss an opportunity—we may be up against the first Arab who is a whole lot better than us at using opportunities, and how.

Mahmoud Abbas, whom Arabs and Israelis call by his nom de guerre Abu Mazen, has figured out how to outmaneuver his opponent, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, and how to defeat the greatest democracy with the strongest army in the region. Frankly, the only real hope Israel has at the moment is that some Palestinian idiot would assassinate the crafty Abbas, and leave Netanyahu to deal with leaders to whom he can measure up.

Secretary of State John Kerry is coming to town next week, ready to twist Israeli arms, and we might as well face up to it: the Obama and Kerry visits have been planned as a one-two punch, with Abu Mazen being heavily prompted to let America do the job for him.

When Barack Obama was making nice with our children in Jerusalem, he made a statement that, at the time, sounded like a rebuke to the Palestinians, who had been insisting that the precondition to renewing talks on peace with the Israelis is a new settlement freeze.

That one was right out of Abba Eban’s book of missing opportunities. Netanyahu tried a settlement freeze early on in his second term. It didn’t bring the Arabs to the table, but it did create a fervent resentment against him among settlers, who responded by doubling Naftali Bennett’s Jewish Home Knesset faction, all at the expense of Bibi’s Likud party.

Palestinian sovereignty and Israeli security are “the core issue,” Obama told Abbas in Ramallah. “If we solve those two problems, the settlement problem will be solved.”

It wasn’t a rebuke, it was golden advise, it was the kind of strategic thinking the Palestinians had not been able to generate, with the glaring exception of the UN assembly statehood vote – which was Abu Mazen’s brainchild, he managed to break the fundamental rules of the Oslo Accords and got away with it relatively unscathed.

Now the PA president has announced that he won’t be asking for settlements freeze as a precondition, he wants to see a map instead. Let Mr. Netanyahu bring to the first meeting of the new round of negotiations his version of where the new Palestinian state should be.

It sounds so harmless. After all, what’s more logical than starting the wheeling and dealing with each side showing where they think the new border should run in the future. One side wants this much, the other side wants only this much – and they’ll reach a compromise.

In reality, this demand robs Netanyahu of his entire arsenal of negotiation moves. In Netanyahu’s play book, you get to map drawing in the distant future, years from now, after a lengthy series of small moves, tweaks, minute gestures, back and forth. If he shows his map at the start, then the future borders become the one and only topic of negotiations, everything else is moot, the battle has been lost before it began.

Meanwhile, AFP reports, President Mahmoud Abbas will temporarily refrain from unilateral action against Israel at the UN and other international arenas, to give U.S.-brokered peace talks a chance to resume.

For a couple of months, the Palestinians will nobly “refrain from taking a case against Israel to the International Criminal Court,” an anonymous Palestinian source told AFP.

But the same official warned that if Israel failed to halt settlement building, the PA would immediately begin working through the international bodies again.

“Settlement building in E1 is a red line and erecting so much as one stone in the area … would destroy the two-state solution,” he said.

Speaking of stones, the PA has been utilizing those very well, along with firebombs, sending bands of angry, unemployed youths to literally get themselves killed by challenging IDF units all across Judea and Samaria. Two Arab teenagers have already been killed, and young Arabs in the Hebron area continued to clash with Israeli troops all day Thursday, protesting the death of Maysara Abu Hamdiyeh, who was serving a long prison sentence for attempted murder, in Israeli custody. Abu Hamdiyeh died from cancer which the Israeli prison system failed to cure.

Yori Yanover

Will Congress Investigate Obama’s Attempt to Derail Bibi?

Wednesday, January 23rd, 2013

Dan Senor, American author of Start Up Nation and former adviser to U.S. presidential candidate Mitt Romney, sent out an electrifying message on Israel’s election day, January 22, claiming that two U.S. officials in Israel quietly conceded that President Obama’s statements to Atlantic columnist Jeffrey Goldberg were an intentional effort to hurt Israeli Prime Minister Benyamin Netanyahu in the election.

If what Senor claims is true, and President Obama was attempting to influence the Israeli election, it is possible that it could become the subject of a congressional investigation.

The statements at issue were revealed in an article Goldberg wrote for Bloomberg on January 14.  That article, the headline of which was, “Obama: Israel Doesn’t Know What its Best Interests Are,” was filled with insider dish from Goldberg, and it was ugly.

Among the things that Goldberg claimed Obama has said about Netanyahu were that his policies were “self-defeating,” that “Israel doesn’t know what its own interests are,” and that “Netanyahu is moving his country down the path toward near-total isolation.”  Goldberg wrote that Obama made these comments frequently, and to several people.

The particular impetus for Obama’s dissing of the Israeli Prime Minister, according to Goldberg, was the decision to go ahead with building Jewish homes in Mevaseret Adumim (often referred to by the impersonal designation “E1.”)  The decision to go forward with building in this area came on the heels of the United Nations vote upgrading the status of the Palestinian Authority to non-member observer state in November of last year.

Goldberg, a centrist liberal Jewish writer who is considered to have credible access to the White House, opined in his article that

On matters related to the Palestinians, the president seems to view the prime minister as a political coward, an essentially unchallenged leader who nevertheless is unwilling to lead or spend political capital to advance the cause of compromise.

It is tempting to believe that Goldberg suffers from excessive hubris and confused his own views for that of the president’s.  But Senor’s tweet reveals that U.S. officials understood that what President Obama was doing was issuing a not so subtly veiled threat to the Israeli people that the U.S. may be willing to really put daylight between itself and Israel unless they choose a less intractable prime minister.

This is the Senor message and several responses.

Dan-Senor-Jeffrey-Goldberg-

Lori Lowenthal Marcus

IDF Takes Down Another Illegal Arab Outpost

Saturday, January 19th, 2013

On Saturday, Palestinians tried to set up another illegal outpost. This latest attempt was in the Jordan Valley, near the town of Maskiot.

Border Police took down the 19 tents. No Arabs were arrested, and injuries were reported on either side.

Last week, Arabs set up an illegal outpost in E1, near Maaleh Adumim, which was eventually taken down.

On Friday, the Arabs built an illegal tent outpost next to Ramot in Jerusalem.

Jewish Press News Briefs

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/idf-takes-down-another-illegal-arab-outpost/2013/01/19/

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