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June 29, 2016 / 23 Sivan, 5776

Posts Tagged ‘Judea’

Reports Show 1 Million Gap Between Estimates on Number of ‘Palestinians’

Wednesday, June 8th, 2016

The Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee’s Subcommittee on Civil Affairs and Security in Judea and Samaria on Tuesday took a stab at figuring out just how many Arabs live in eastern Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria, where in the latter two no one has taken a scientific census in ages, and the numbers appear to be skewed according to the political leanings of the different sources.

Lies, Damned Lies, and PA Census Data

The CIA World Factbook, updated July 2015, estimates there are 2,785,366 “Palestinians” living in those three areas, a.k.a. the “West Bank.” The Knesset subcommittee’s discussion suggested this figure is more than a little inflated.

Subcommittee Chairman MK Mordhay Yogev (Habayit Hayehudi) opened the debate saying “this is our second discussion of this issue, and we’d like to focus on data regarding Area C which is our responsibility. When I served as Ephraim Brigade Commander, over a period of one year, we executed an accurate count of all the residents in the sector, including Tulkarm and Qalqilya. The State of Israel possesses the needed means to find out, and the State of Israel must find out what is the number of residents for whom it is responsible, and about whom it would have to reach future decisions.”

Head of the Operations Directorate of the Civil Administration Lt. Col. Eyal Zeevi began his part by stressing that the civil administration does not engage in demographic studies, and that the responsibility for that in all of Judea and Samaria belongs to the Palestinian Authority, according to the 1995 interim agreement between Israel and the PA. In that context Zeevi explained that the PA demographic data does not offer specific Area C-related figures. However, Avi Gur-Ari, Population Administration officer in the Civil Administration clarified that he does maintain reliable testing of the data received from the PA.

This came as a surprise to the chairman, who requested that the entire PA census, including the data for Area C, be given to his subcommittee, noting that since the data includes the names of individual communities it should be feasible to discern those communities that are included in Area C.

Zeevi said it wasn’t as simple as that, because some of the Arab villages are split between Area C and neighboring, PA-governed Areas A and B. Other villages border the Jerusalem municipality. “With all due respect for the chairman, I don’t think it can be done in the suggested schedule. To do this professionally would require time and resources, which the political echelon has not yet decided to allocate.”

Once in the Roll, Always on the Roll

Zeevi shared some of the most common problems with the Palestinian Authority census: for one thing, a resident who leaves the PA remains listed as a resident; and these residents are able to visit, register their children and return abroad. Zeevi estimates that as many as 15,000 residents are added to the PA census this way annually.

“The immigration data presented today is partial and pertains only to the Allenby bridge border crossing into Jordan,” Zeevi added, estimating that “over the past 15 years more than 175 thousand have left through the crossing and never returned.”

According to Zeevi, the registered Arab population who carry Palestinian ID cards in Judea and Samaria, not including eastern Jerusalem, is 2.63 million. He believes that with the current growth rate coefficient in 2020 there will be 3.28 million and by 2030 there will be more than 4 million Arabs in all of Judea and Samaria.

According to Avi Lekach from the Population and Immigration Authority, in eastern Jerusalem there are at least 300 thousand Arab residents. David Koren, a consultant to the Jerusalem Mayor, noted that while there are 316 thousand registered Arab residents in Jerusalem, there may be as many as 60 thousand Arabs from the PA who are seeking residency in Jerusalem as part of family reunions.

Italian-born Israeli demographer and statistician Prof. Sergio Della Pergola told the subcommittee that he believes there are some 2.4 Arab residents in Judea and Samaria today, and that the Jewish majority in all of Eretz Israel is only about 52% — which includes people who identify as Jewish but halakhically are not. In his opinion, the halakhically Jewish majority is long gone.

But former Ambassador Yoram Ettinger cited his own research which found that the birthrate balance has switched and that today’s Jewish birthrate is higher than the Arab. Ettinger also said that his research showed that by the end of 2015 there were only 1.75 million Arabs in Judea and Samaria.

Analyzing PA Eligible Voter Data Implies Even Lower Numbers

Back in 2013, Middle East analyst Dr. Guy Bechor cited the number of eligible PA voters in the 2012 local elections — 515 thousand — setting it as the number of adults 18 and older. If we add to it an identical number of people ages 0-18, we’ll get a little more than one million. Add the maximum figure of eastern Jerusalem Arabs and you’ll get a generous estimate of only 1.4 million Arabs. The number of Jews, incidentally, is comprised of 385 thousand in Judea and Samaria and 300 thousand in eastern Jerusalem, or close to 700 thousand in total.

MK Hilik Bar (Zionist Camp-Labor) said it was shameful that Israel does not know how many Arabs actually live in Area C. “We know how many Syrian tanks there are, but not how many civilians are living under our care,” he said, suggesting that whether Area C becomes part of Israel or is handed over to the PA, “we should know how many potential Arab citizens we’ll have in the state.”

JNi.Media

Liberman Says No Interviews Till Rosh Hashana, But Ministry Will Pay Expenses for IDF Sgt. HaYisraeli

Monday, June 6th, 2016

Newly-appointed Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman says he won’t give any more interviews until at least Rosh HaShana. But he will at least make sure that IDF Sgt. Yehuda HaYisraeli will get his home adjustments paid for.

Liberman, who heads the Yisrael Beytenu party, opened the faction meeting on Monday by saying, “I will step into my position and learn the material,” before he says anything further to the media.

He did, however, also announce that the Defense Ministry will cover rehabilitative adjustment expenses for IDF Sgt. Yehuda HaYisraeli, who has returned home from the hospital after nearly two years in a coma and several months of rehabilitation.

HaYisraeli still has a very long way to go with rehabilitation treatment to continue at home, and hundreds of thousands of shekels must be spent on adjustments to the home.

Such expenses for soldiers wounded in the line of duty are always covered by the IDF and Defense Ministry. HaYisraeli was wounded during Operation Protective Edge in August 2014. He had raced after the Hamas terrorists who stole the body of his fellow officer, IDF Lt. Hadar Goldin, who was killed and then kidnaped in Gaza during what was supposed to be a cease-fire.

But because HaYisraeli lives in Ofra, a community located in Judea and Samaria, the government has held back on paying for the adjustments to the home due to a quiet construction freeze in the region implemented in hopes of placating the Palestinian Authority and its global supporters.

Liberman has brushed aside the freeze in the case of the wounded soldier, and said his ministry will pay the home adjustment expenses for IDF Sgt. Yehuda HaYisraeli.

Hana Levi Julian

Annals of Crazy, The Sequel: Barred Teen Returns to Samaria Under House Arrest in Yitzhar

Sunday, June 5th, 2016

A teenage boy expelled from his home by the Civil Administration under orders by the Shin Bet intelligence agency (“Shabak”) is back for now.

The 15-year-old was also under orders not to talk to a 12-year-old neighbor and was expelled from the town in which he grew up, and both entire regions of Samaria and Judea.

It’s a little weird, the Honenu legal aid society pointed out.

But after a court battle on behalf of the boy, the Home Front Command responded to his attorney, Adi Kedar, that the teen will be allowed to remain under house arrest at his home at least until Tuesday, according to the Honenu civil rights organization.

It was last Tuesday that the teen received the restraining order forcing him out of the entire region of Judea and Samaria, including the home of his parents in Yitzhar.

He was also placed under house arrest at the home of his grandparents – but they vehemently refused to accept the task of becoming their grandson’s jailer. When it became clear that this condition was untenable, authorities and the family were granted 14 days in which to find an alternative.

But a placement has yet to be found. Who wants to be a jailer for a 15-year-old male who was raised free in the hills of Samaria?

The conditions expected of someone taking on the task of monitoring someone on house arrest are nothing to be trifled with. One can easily lose one’s employment having to fulfill such an obligation, not to mention one’s sanity.

Attorney Adi Kedar contacted Home Front Command in an urgent letter to inform the authorities that a placement has not yet been identified, and an extension of an additional 14 days must be granted in order to continue to seek a placement.

But Kedar also noted that the entire order is a violation of the teen’s civil rights and a violation of international conventions as well. He added a reminder that the minor in question was not arrested, but rather was arbitrarily ordered out of his parents’ home and out of the entire region at the decision of the commanders of the Jewish Department of the Shin Bet intelligence agency.

In response, the Home Front Command has said it will hold a hearing on the matter in the coming days.

Jewish Press News Briefs

Liberman Opens Crossings Between Palestinian Authority, Gaza and Israel for Ramadan

Saturday, June 4th, 2016

Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman has opened the gates, so to speak, to allow almost completely free movement between the Palestinian Authority and Israel during Ramadan this year.

IDF Maj.-Gen. Yoav Mordechai, Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT) issued a statement late Friday noting the move was Israel’s “civil policy to improve the quality of life for Arabs citizens of the Palestinian Authority in Judea, Samaria and Gaza, including the maintenance of their freedom of religion.”

The policy – recommended first by IDF Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Gadi Eizenkot – comes in advance of the start of the Islamic holy month of Ramadan which begins Sunday night.

Under the policy, Arabs in Judea and Samaria will be able to enter Israel for visits with relatives and to worship Friday at the Al Aqsa Mosque on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem.

In addition they will be able to travel overseas via Ben Gurion International airport, and also be allowed to visit relatives in Gaza as well.

Gazans living abroad will be able to fly in via Ben Gurion to visit their families in the region.

The “crossings will be open for [travel to] prayers as the activity hours of the crossings will be extended,” according to a spokesperson for the COGAT.

Moreover, Gazans will be allowed to attend prayers in Jerusalem at the Al Aqsa Mosque on the Temple Mount, and attend Ramadan religious events.

They will also be able to visit relatives in Israel, as well as in Palestinian Authority-controlled areas of Judea and Samaria — assuming, of course, that Gaza’s ruling Hamas terror organization agrees to allow its citizens all this freedom. It’s also not clear whether Hamas will allow visitors to enter the region to visit family members either, for that matter. That is not under Israel’s control.

But this time it won’t be the Israeli government placing obstacles in the way.

The Palestinian Authority and the international community have been “updated on these steps for the holiday,” the statement said.

Hana Levi Julian

Gaza Tots Taught to Wage War Against Israel in Realistic School Plays [video]

Tuesday, May 31st, 2016

Gaza tots are being taught from the tiniest ages –from three and up — how to wage war against Israel. They are being desensitized to the sounds of war in school plays where they learn to wage war against Israel in realistic-sounding battle scenes.

It’s not a joke, or even a game. It’s very serious business and deliberate, methodical indoctrination of the next generation that begins literally with playground or daycare, and continues straight through the lifespan, via all forms of media, to the grave.

The Da’esh (ISIS or Islamic State) and Hezbollah terrorist groups have been doing this for quite some time as well.

IDF Spokesperson Lt.-Col. Peter Lerner called the latest video of these events “a rare glimpse into Gaza child abuse,” and asked Facebook users to “please share this.”  JewishPress.com asks its readers to do the same, for only through wide dissemination of this information will English-speaking readers learn the truth about what is happening to the children of Gaza.

These events are not being covered at all in the mainstream media abroad for many reasons, perhaps primary among them might be the safety of their journalists whose own lives and those of their families depend upon the capricious whims of Gaza’s ruling Hamas terrorist organization.

For those journalists who do write about these horrors, their editors either ignore the facts or dismiss them as aberrations.

Few are really aware of the deliberate generational programming that is taking place among the Palestinian Authority Arabs, quietly promoted by Ramallah-based leader Mahmoud Abbas and Gazan Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh.

These school-based “war game plays” flow into the summer camp programs when the children learn the more practical aspects of battle: how to properly wield their little weapons, how to sight, aim and fire, the art of camouflage, etc.

Each terrorist group runs its own summer program for children from ages 3 to 21 – by which time, “graduates” have already become fully functioning operatives of the terror group.

Hana Levi Julian

Report: Israeli Civil Administration Accelerates Mapping of State Lands in Judea and Samaria

Tuesday, May 31st, 2016

The Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT) in 2015 re-mapped an area of 62 thousand hectares in Judea and Samaria, in a manner that may hint at plans for wide range construction there, Ha’aretz reported Tuesday. The re-mapping is carried out by a special task force dubbed the “blue line” team, within COGAT. The work involves examining state lands that were declared in the last century. The old maps are being digitally scanned to enhance their accuracy. The report notes that Israeli law demands re-mapping areas that were declared state land before 1999 before releasing them to construction.

The report, composed by Dror Etkes, founder of Kerem Navot, an NGO “monitoring the Israeli settlements in the occupied Palestinian territories,” is based entirely on speculation over the map digitizing effort at COGAT, which may be simply an administrative move to preserve them, rather than a secret plot to populate those areas. However, since Etkes is not a newcomer to observing and reporting on the Jewish settlement enterprise, his conclusions, coming as they are from a hostile, leftwing source, may be a cause for (muted) celebration in rightwing circles.

“It’s important to understand that the mapping efforts are directed almost exclusively at the depth of Judea and Samaria and to settlements which are well outside the ‘settlement clusters,’ as well as, most emphatically, to areas declared by Israel to be ‘fire zones’ despite the fact that in reality they are part of the lands reserve which Israel gradually assigns to settlement,” Etkes told Ha’aretz.

The re-mapping effort of those 62 thousand hectares constitutes a significant increase in the rate of this work, compared with only 20 thousand hectares re-mapped in 2014 and 13 thousand in 2013.

Ha’aretz speculates that one of the goals of the new, wholesale re-mapping effort, is intended to deny Arabs living in the fire zones the right to appeal to Israel’s Supreme Court against infrastructure and construction work carried out near their homes. Should such appeals be filed, Israel would be within its rights to argue that the Arab homes were built after the area had been declared state land.

Etkes also suggests that the re-mapping of areas near Israeli communities in Judea and Samaria indicates planned expansions. He noted 962 hectares re-mapped near Nokdim, and 3 hectares outside Gitit.

JNi.Media

Smuggled Rocket/Mortar Parts Shipment From Hebron to Gaza Foiled

Thursday, May 26th, 2016

A recent joint operation by Israeli military, police, customs and tax officials and Shin Bet intelligence agents has turned up a massive shipment of military parts headed for Gaza from Hebron. It is also now clear there is a Hamas manufacturing facility in the ancient Judean city.

Terrorists were caught red-handed with contraband – weaponry parts – at the Tarqumiya crossing near Hebron with a large shipment headed for the Kerem Shalom crossing into Gaza.

Intercepted pipes for rockets and mortars

The shipment was listed as textiles and jewelry, and was huge, according to a statement by security officials.

But hidden among the goods were a lot of electric motors that are useful for building tunnels – attack tunnels – and special cuttings for mortars and rockets.

Intercepted electric motors for tunnels

Gaza’s ruling Hamas terrorist organization has, in fact, a manufacturing and distribution center set up in Hebron, with a plant there to produce parts for its war machine.

Imagine what might have happened, if the Tarqumiya checkpoint no longer existed?

Or if the Kerem Shalom crossing were simply wide open, as Turkey continues to demand?

Hana Levi Julian

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/israel-blocks-smugglers-from-importing-mortar-parts-from-hebron-to-gaza/2016/05/26/

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