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October 25, 2016 / 23 Tishri, 5777

Posts Tagged ‘Efrat’

Gush Etzion Host Its First Dog Show

Tuesday, August 23rd, 2016

When dog breeder and groomer Micha Katz of Efrat (for transparency, Micha Katz is the author’s son) wanted to show his dogs in competitions around Israel, he felt he was pounding on a brick wall. After attending countless meetings in kennel clubs, he saw that some clubs (like the Poodle Club) were opening up to the idea of Friday competitions, but most dog organizations were satisfied with their turnouts and perhaps did not feel the need to change the day of their shows in order to accommodate the religious community.

Over the past many years, more and more Orthodox Jews have started participating and excelling in a myriad of sports. While they have reached high ranks in their sport, they have often been side-lined when they reach major competitions. They find themselves at a huge disadvantage, because most competitions take place on Shabbat.

Some trainers who acknowledge the excellence of their religious pupils, try to schedule them later in the day on Saturday, so that they can make Havdalah (end the Sabbath) and still participate before the competition is over. They try to reach out to sports organizations for an alternative competition time. When that is not possible, observant sportsmen are forced to choose between their love of and adherence to the laws of the Sabbath and their love of the game.

In an initiative to enable observant dog owners to participate in dog shows and competitions without violating the Sabbath, Micha founded a kennel club in Gush Etzion. Kennel Club Gush Etzion is providing a team of professional trainers and dog handlers to help the region’s dogs get in shape to perform in their first show on Tuesday, August 30.

“Whether you are a dog owner, dog lover or supporter of the participation of Sabbath-observant sportsmen in competition, the Gush Etzion Dog Show is the place to be,” said Gary Schickman, owner of the Scoop Café and Philly Pizza in Efrat, and a sponsor of the event. Gush Etzion’s First Dog and Pet Show will be held at Achuzat HaKlavim in Gush Etzion on Tuesday afternoon, August 30, from 5:30 to 8 PM. Information: 052-691-9989, 02-502-3731.

Gush Etzion’s First Dog Show is sponsored by Gary Schickman, Falafel Tamar and Nissim Mobile.

Sneakers, a defense and Search and Rescue dog, who is also a trained movie stunt dog.  Sneakers will be performing at Gush Etzion's First Dog Show.

Sneakers, a defense and Search and Rescue dog, who is also a trained movie stunt dog.
Sneakers will be performing at Gush Etzion’s First Dog Show.

Sharon Katz

Israel Taking Concrete Steps to Stretch Gush Etzion Out to Bethlehem

Monday, August 15th, 2016

Israel is conducting a land survey intended to declare the area east of the community of Efrat in Judea a state-owned land, freeing it up for construction, according to a document submitted by the state to the Supreme Court last week and cited by Ha’aretz.

According to the document, the survey has been undertaken “in a manner that will create contiguity of state lands.” As Ha’aretz points out, Efrat is inside the Gush Etzion settlement bloc of Judea, and construction east of Efrat, in an area known as Givat Eitam, would expand Gush Etzion eastward, to the outskirts of the ethnically cleansed Bethlehem, which used to be majority Christian but since 1994 has seen a flight of its Christian population.

Jewish prisoners in Jordan, after the fall of Gush Etzion, May 1948 / Wikipedia commons

Jewish prisoners in Jordan, after the fall of Gush Etzion, May 1948 / Wikipedia commons

To remind you, Gush Etzion was founded not after the 1967 War, but back in 1940-1947. Its civilian population was overrun by an invading Jordanian army in 1948, some of them massacred and the rest taken prisoner. But as of 2011, Gush Etzion consists of 22 communities with a population of 70,000 Jews.

According to Ha’aretz, in 2009, 425 acres of land outside Efrat were declared state land, with a plan to build 2,500 housing units there. The state told the court that early in 2016 the Efrat Regional Council requested permission to start planning construction in the area, noting that the land of Givat Eitam is privately owned by Himanuta, a subsidiary of the Jewish National Fund.

The document the state submitted to the court reads: “The intention is to promote in the future development of Himanuta lands. To this end, infrastructure must be installed between Himanuta lands westward toward Efrat, including lands that have been declared [state lands] at Givat Eitam… The installation of this infrastructure will be possible if and when the land survey now underway is completed in the area between Efrat and Givat Eitam in a manner that creates contiguity of state lands.”

The document is co-signed by the supervisor of government and abandoned property in Judea and Samaria, Yossi Segal, and the defense minister’s aide for settlements, Kobi Eliraz.

The Efrat Regional Council released a statement Sunday replying to a challenge to the building plans by Peace Now, saying, “It is symbolic that precisely on the day marking the destruction of the Temple some are trying to sabotage the building of the Land of Israel (referring to the fast day of Tisha B’Av,which fell on Sunday).”

“The legal clarification of the status of lands in the Eitam neighborhood has been underway for 12 years,” the regional council said, adding that “at the High Court of Justice at least five different panels of justices have come to realize that there is nothing of substance in the claims of the petitioners, who have dragged the state into a waste of money and costly resources in unnecessary proceedings.”

The council said it was “happy about High Court rulings in previous petitions, and we are happy that the state is seeking to redress years of injustice.”

The council noted there were “hundreds of acres bought by Jews even before the establishment of the state and registered to the Jewish National Fund in trust for the Jewish state” at Givat Eitam, and construction at Givat Eitam will fulfill the will of these Jews, and the “great bonus is mainly for young couples who cannot afford to purchase an apartment in Jerusalem and its environs.”

The Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories confirmed to Ha’aretz that its “blue line team” in the Civil Administration – consisting of cartographers, surveyors and legal experts – was now “working to study the status of lands at Givat Eitam, and a decision on their status will be rendered at the end of the team’s work.”

David Israel

Firebomb Thrown Near Northern Efrat Entrance

Monday, August 8th, 2016

A firebomb was thrown at a group of IDF soldiers near the northern entrance of the town of Efrat on Sunday night around midnight, according to a TPS report.

No one was injured and no damage was done.

Jewish Press News Briefs

Israelis and Arabs: “Etzion Bloc Should Be Center of Peace, Not War”

Wednesday, August 3rd, 2016

By Anna Rudnitsky/TPS

Efrat (TPS) – Arabs and Israelis met on Tuesday evening at the library of the Etzion-bloc community of Efrat to learn about the history of Jewish-Arab relations in the region and about the cooperation that has existed between them throughout the past century.

“We thought that it was important to show that Jewish-Arab relations do not have to be hostile and that they actually used to be friendly, at least here in Gush Etzion. We think that there is even hope for this today, despite the difficult and often bloody reality we live in,” Kfar Etzion Field School Director Yaron Rozental, who helped organize the event, told TPS.

Historian Yohanan Ben-Yaakov shared stories about the establishment of Jewish settlements in the region that he said may not be as well known as others. “Israelis are usually familiar with war stories about the Etzion bloc, about brave Jewish fighters and the numerous sacrifices that they made,” he said. “It is always presented as a very simple story—there were good guys and bad guys, and the good guys won. Relations between Jews and Arabs here were not always that black and white.”

Ben-Yaakov spoke about the settlement of Migdal Eder, the inhabitants of which were saved during the pogroms of 1929 by Arabs from the neighboring village of Beit Ummar, and about Kfar Etzion founder Shmuel Holzman’s son, a Jewish doctor who opened an infirmary near the Etzion bloc junction in 1929 with the intention of helping the local Arab population.

“It’s written in the Torah that Esau hates Yaakov, and everybody remembers these words. Few know what is written later, that he kissed him with his whole heart. These two feelings go hand in hand here today as well and it is up to us to choose between love and hatred,” Ben Yaakov concluded.

The event also featured speakers such as Dr. Yitzhak Glick, brother of MK Yehuda Glick, who received the Moskowitz Prize in 2012 for the free medical assistance he has provided to the people of the Etzion bloc, including to Palestinians, who know him as “our doctor.”

“Gush Etzion must be the center of peace not just in Israel, but in the world,” Dr. Glick maintained.

The event was also organized by Roots, a grassroots initiative which regularly facilitates meetings between Israelis and Arabs. The organization helped bring several Arabs from the nearby villages of Beit Ummar and Yatta to the event. Roots co-founder Khaled Abu Awwad said that he believes that such events could be more effective in bringing peace to the Middle East than meetings between Abbas and Netanyahu.

“Peace between our peoples must grow from the bottom up and only we can break the walls of alienation and hatred that have been put up between us,” he said. “We belong to this land, but the land does not belong to anyone so we must learn to live here together in peace.”

TPS / Tazpit News Agency

Gush Etzion Water Supply Low

Wednesday, July 27th, 2016

During the IDF raid and fighting that captured and killed members of the Hamas terror cell that murdered Rabbi Miki Mark of Otniel, a high power line near the village of Tzurif was damaged.

This power line supplies electricity to the Gush Etzion area, and specifically to the regional water pumps.

As a result, the Gush Etzion and Efrat water tanks are very low on Wednesday morning, and residents have been asked to minimize water usage until the electric company can fix the line.

UPDATE: The electric line was fixed around 7:45 AM, and the regional water tank are now being refilled.

Jewish Press News Briefs

Terrorists Against the Wall

Monday, July 18th, 2016

A group of “former” Arab terrorists and their leftwing Israeli enablers held a protest in Gush Etzion on Friday, between Beitar and Efrat.

They shut down Highway 60, the main highway between Jerusalem and Gush Etzion. They held up signs with ridiculous statements on them, such as “The wall is violent”.

While my regular readers know that I am not a fan of the security wall or of Iron Dome, as these are defensive measures we use instead of fighting to win, there’s no question that the psychological shock the Jihadists and their supporters felt when the security fences and walls went up, forced them to reevaluate the “success” of their suicide bombing campaign and ability to continue them.

Almost immediately the Israeli Left and the Arabs began fighting the wall, always leaving out of their narrative the fact that the Arab terrorists were the ones responsible for it having to go up in the first place.

The group who blocked Highway 60 in Gush Etzion describe themselves as having “actively participated in the cycle of violence”, which in plain English means, the Arabs in their group were active terrorists who tried to, and perhaps succeeded in hurting and killing Jews.

In fact, it may very well be that included in this group protesting the security wall are failed suicide bombers and the people that sent them.

Of course people like that would consider the wall “violent”, as perhaps more than anything it affected their ability to kill lots of Jews, and it heavily reduced the active Arab support for their acts of terrorism.

It’s an obvious question to ask, are these “former” terrorists still supporting terror? Is “peace” simply a new tactic for their same nefarious goals?

We could talk about their one-track, mostly one-sided message, and how they don’t block the roads to Yata and Dura in colorful protest of the serial Arab terror emanating from those villages.

They explain away their one-sided protests and imbalanced messages citing the “occupation”. Their catchall word for excusing everything.

But to me, the real warning sign is how “former” terrorists, whose plans were thwarted by the security wall, are now calling to tear down one of Israel’s primary passive deterrents against suicide bombers and Arab terrorism – right in the midst of a new wave of terrorism.

I think they’ve answered the question.


Shooting Attack Between Tekoa and Efrat – One Wounded [video]

Saturday, July 9th, 2016

One person was injured in a shooting attack at the T-Junction near Tekoa in Gush Etzion at around 11 PM on Saturday night. Terrorists hit the car with multiple bullets.

The T-Junction is the road that connect Eastern Gush Etzion (Tekoa, Nokdim, Maaleh Amos) to Efrat.

MDA treated the 30-year-old driver with a bullet wound in his lower body.

The wounded Israeli was transported to Sharei Tzedek hospital where he is listed in light to moderate condition.

The IDF is scouring nearby villages to locate the terrorist’s escape vehicle and the terrorists.

There is fighting going on in the village of Sair, after the IDF went in, in pursuit of the terrorists.

Jewish Press News Briefs

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/shooting-attack-between-tekoa-and-efrat-one-wounded/2016/07/09/

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