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August 27, 2016 / 23 Av, 5776

Posts Tagged ‘Kiryat Arba’

Analysis: Two Funerals

Wednesday, July 6th, 2016

By Yishai Fleisher

In the last two weeks I had the painful privilege of attending two big funerals.

The first was the funeral of Irving Moskowitz, the wealthy American doctor who, along with his wife Cherna, became the patron of building in eastern Jerusalem, Hebron, Akko, and Ariel, and was involved in countless building projects, reclamations, charities, and educational institutions. By one unofficial estimate, Moskowitz gave half a billion dollars to these causes – but it might be much more. He was interred on the Mount of Olives facing the Temple Mount, close to the graves of Israel’s first Chief Rabbi, Rabbi Kook, and first IDF Chief Rabbi, Shlomo Goren, in the heart of eastern Jerusalem where he helped pioneer Jewish life. His funeral, while sad, was not marred by an atmosphere of a tragedy, rather, it was a kind of celebration of his mission and success.

Less than two weeks later, I was standing at the funeral of Hallel Yaffa Ariel, a lively 13-year-old girl who had been murdered by a 17-year-old Jihadist from Arab village Bani Na’im. He scaled a wall and jumped through a window of the Ariel’s family home set within the vineyards of Kiryat Arba. The murderer found little Hallel sleeping in her bed defenseless, so he stabbed her tens of times and then ran looking for a next victim until a member of the Rapid Response Team ended his life with a bullet. Hallel was buried in the ancient cemetery of Hebron, where many other Jewish victims of Jihad terror rest along with Jewish luminaries, not far from the Machpela, the Tomb of the Founding Fathers and Mothers of the Jewish people. Unlike the Moskowitz funeral, this one was not a celebration of the life well lived, but rather the epitome of tragedy, loss, and bitter questions. The contrast between the two funerals was stark. Irving Moskowitz lived his life fully. He was a loving family man and a rags-to-riches success (his wife Cherna told us that at their wedding, the bottom two layers of the wedding cake were faux – only the top tier was real cake, because that’s all they could afford). Moskowitz dedicated his life and wealth to increasing Jewish presence and asserting Jewish rights in the Land of Israel. His funeral was a Who’s Who of activists, ministers and mayors who came to honor the successes and contributions of a man who kept pushing the Zionist revolution into the heartland of Israel liberated in the Six Day War.

Hallel Yaffa’s contributions were, on the other hand, more modest. She was the oldest girl in her family, a natural leader to her siblings and many cousins, and a dance performer — her dance teacher’s eulogy at the funeral was a painful testimony to her young life. Yet at her funeral some of the very same activists, ministers, and VIPs that were present at the Moskowitz funeral attended. This time, they came not to celebrate, but to commiserate with a salt-of-the-earth family, a victim of a despicable crime perpetrated by forces dedicated to eradicating us from our country. And many more came to say goodbye to little Hallel, whose body and potential were destroyed forever. No dancing, no children, no life.

At the Moskowitz shiva, modern day Zionist heroes streamed in. As I sat next to Cherna, I translated for Yigal Cohen-Orgad, the Chancellor of Ariel University who talked about how Moskowitz saved the budding college from going into bankruptcy with a fifty-thousand dollar donation to cover debt. Then I translated for an Arab man who works with reclamation organizations in Jerusalem. He blessed Cherna for a long life and urged her to continue with strength, saying that though he has been the target of many assassination attempts, he believes his efforts on behalf of Israel protected him. He promised Cherna that he will continue his work, and that his sons after him will as well, “all the way until the Temple is built in Jerusalem” — yes, I heard it myself. Finally, I translated for Ze’ev Hever (Zambish), the famous CEO of Amana (the housing organization of Judea and Samaria), who told the story of how Moskowitz gave him money for the first mobile homes for new immigrants from Russia.

Zambish recalled that it had taken only ten minutes to convince Moskowitz and that they reconvened to phone the mobile homes factory owner to close the deal that very same evening. Through the stories, we learned that Moskowitz was a quick decision maker, that he was very hands-on with the legal minutia, that he saw clearly the importance of acquiring the land of Israel. Moskowitz did not wait for the government to lead – indeed, I got the impression that Moskowitz formed a shadow government of activists around him — they ran ahead, created facts, and then allowed the government to catch up.

At Hallel Yaffa’s shiva, there was frustration and pain. Important politicians, the Prime Minister, the Defense Minister, and the President, all came into the family home but somehow their proclamations rang hollow and shallow. The greatest questions asked in today’s Israel were right on the surface, but the politicians did not have clear answers: what is the nature of this Jihadist Jew-hatred and how do we stop it? Do Jews have a right to live in this (part of the) land, and if yes, is it a smart thing to do? What is the Palestinian Authority and how is it that our country awaits them at the peace table yet they are the source of the greatest incitement?

But the politicians had more blandness than answers and even seemed more culpable than capable. The government response to the murders seemed tepid at best: restricting Arab work permits for a limited time, and announcing the approval of 42 housing units in Kiryat Araba which had already been approved once before. Local Arab Jihadis recently murdered Yitzchak Chasno, two members of the Litman family, gardener Gennady Kaufman, and now Hallel Yaffa and Rabbi Mark – but there was no sense of rage or urgency in the government actions in the Hebron region. At the shiva house, the Prime Minister and the President were received warmly and respectfully, but not with confidence that they will bring real change in response to these crimes and these times.

Yet, overtly, what was common to both funerals and shiva houses was an abiding faith in the right of the Jewish people to live in freedom and security anywhere in this great, but tiny land. Irving Moskowitz and Hallel Yaffa Ariel both exemplified the struggle to actualize Jewish life in the Jewish ancestral homeland. Both Moskowitz and Hallel Yaffa stood for Jewish courage that will not succumb to bullying from outside forces or yield to slothfulness from within.

May their memory be a blessings and an inspiration to all of us.

JNi.Media

US State Dept Questions Israel’s Desire to Reach ‘2-State Solution’

Wednesday, July 6th, 2016

The U.S. State Department is questioning whether Israel really wants to make peace with the Palestinian Authority, and whether the Netanyahu government really supports the “two-state solution.”

State Department spokesperson John Kirby told reporters at a briefing Tuesday that Washington is “deeply concerned” over Israel’s decision to approve a tender for 42 housing units in Kiryat Arba and construction of 800 new housing units in Jerusalem and Ma’ale Adumim.

“If it’s true, this report would be the latest step in what seems to be the systematic process of land seizures, settlement expansions and legalization of outposts that is fundamentally undermining the prospects for a two-state solution,” Kirby told reporters.

“This action risks entrenching a one-state reality and raises serious questions about Israel’s intentions.”

The approvals came in response to two deadly terrorist attacks perpetrated against Israelis within a 24-hour period last week. A 13-year-old girl was stabbed to death by a Palestinian Authority Arab who climbed in her bedroom window last Thursday morning. The killer stabbed young Halle Yaffa Ariel, hy’d dozens of times, her blood spraying all over her room, after he scaled the security fence around Kiryat Arba.

The next day Arab terrorists opened fire at Rabbi Miki Mark, the administrator of the Otniel yeshiva as he drove near the community on Route 60 with his wife and children just a few hours before the Sabbath. The rabbi died instantly as he lost control of the vehicle and the car flipped over; his wife Chava was critically injured. Two of his ten children were also wounded.

Hallel Ariel, hy’d, was an American citizen. So is Chava Mark. But although the State Department issued the standard condemnation of violence perpetrated against U.S. citizens, there was complete silence from the White House.

Israel’s security cabinet met Saturday night to determine a response to the escalation in deadly attacks. By Sunday morning the government ministers were presented with a list of measures that were gauged to signal Israel’s determination not to buckle under the violence, including more boots on the ground in the Hebron area.

The Quartet for Mideast Peace issued a report on Friday (July 1) blaming Jewish construction in Judea and Samaria — even routine building connected with the natural growth in any community, within the municipal boundaries of existing towns — for the violence.

On Tuesday, it seemed the U.S. was joining that bandwagon and adding more fuel to the fire, blaming the approval of badly-needed housing units in existing communities for the Palestinian Authority’s unwillingness to join direct final status talks — and the unprovoked bloodbaths by Arab terrorists against innocent Israeli civilians.

Kirby added the U.S. would continue to “look for leaders in the region to do what they need to do … to demonstrate leadership to take down the violence, reduce tensions.”

Hana Levi Julian

Israeli Officials Call for Prime Minister To Approve Jewish Construction in Israel’s Capital

Monday, July 4th, 2016

By Jonathan Benedek/TPS

Israeli officials emphasized the importance of maintaining a clear and undivided Jerusalem this morning at the annual conference held by the Yesha Council, an organization representing the Jewish communities of Judea and Samaria.

“Givat Hamatos is a strategic point for the future of Jerusalem,” said Education Minister and Jewish Home Party Chairman Naftali Bennett. “It is where the fate of the unity of Jerusalem will be set.”

Minister Bennett made the remarks following the approval of 600 new housing units for Arabs in the neighborhood of Beit Safafa, located on land in southern Jerusalem territories annexed by Israel after the Six Day War in 1967. The new housing units will further connect the Arab neighborhood to Givat Hamatos, also located on southern Jerusalem lands gained by Israel in 1967.

“The goal of the world and the Palestinians is to create Palestinian territorial continuity through Givat Hamatos from Beit Jala to Malha,” continued Minister Bennett.

Beit Jala is a Palestinian town located next to Bethlehem and south of Givat Hamatos. Malha is another neighborhood in southern Jerusalem to the west of Givat Hamatos.

“We are opposed to such a goal,” Bennett stressed. “We want continuity between Talpiot and Gilo and to preserve the unity of Jerusalem.”

Talpiot is a neighborhood located southwest of Jerusalem’s Old City and Gilo, like Givat Hamatos, is another neighborhood in southern Jerusalem located in territories taken over by Israel in the Six Day War.

Although Israel maintains that Givat Hamatos and Gilo are part of its capital city, many in the international community refuse to accept Israel’s annexation of those neighborhoods or Jerusalem’s status as Israel’s capital city.

Minister Bennett asserted that authorization for Palestinian construction without Israeli construction in such areas would only serve to further divide Jerusalem.

“Arab construction without Israeli construction in Givat Hamatos will create [Palestinian] territorial continuity up to the Malha mall,” Bennett noted. “It will create a de-facto divide of the city and create a Palestinian buffer in Jerusalem. I urge the prime minister not to only allow Palestinian construction and I trust that he will permit Israeli construction as well.”

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has often cancelled or postponed plans to build additional Jewish housing units in neighborhoods like Givat Hamatos and Gilo due to intense pressure from the international community. Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat, who also spoke at the conference, insisted that Netanyahu not abide by such a standard, which he implied to be prejudiced against the city’s Jewish residents.

“Building in Jerusalem should not be stopped for no reason,” Barkat asserted. “We need to allow construction within the framework of the work plans of the city of Jerusalem without prejudice.”

“I would argue that it would be a mistake not to allow construction and that it is a mistake to only authorize it after an attack,” continued Barkat.

Israel has often announced construction plans near the site of a terror attack shortly after its occurrence. Netanyahu announced over the weekend that 42 new homes would be built in the Harsina neighborhood of Kiryat Arba, where 13-year-old Hallel Yaffa Ariel was stabbed to death by a Palestinian Arab last Thursday. Critics countered that such a plan was already in the works.

Barkat contended that Israel should insist upon continuing to build sans any discriminatory standards. “The message is to allow construction without prejudice in the city of Jerusalem,” the mayor reiterated.

TPS / Tazpit News Agency

Thousands Mark Anniversary of Hamas Kidnapped Jewish Boys in Nature Preserve Created in their Memory

Sunday, July 3rd, 2016

With a stirring ceremony in the presence of family members of the abducted three youths taken by Hamas murderers in July 2014, the Head of Gush Etzion Council Davidi Perl and thousands of local residents celebrated their memory at the Oz v’Gaon Nature Preserve on the hill above Gush Etzion Junction in Judea. The nature preserve was established in the memory of the three youths.

The event, conducted by Women in Green, which launched the preserve project and has been running it as a site for education, tourism and camping, was opened by Yehudit Katsover, one of the heads of the movement, with the story of how the decision was made to go up to the preserve on the very night in which the bodies of the abducted youths were found. Katsover told the audience that this is the way of Zionism: development and growth emerge out of pain. But she added that “it could also be otherwise; we could and should cut off the enemy’s hope by applying Israeli sovereignty” in Area C of Judea and Samaria (to start, at least).

Oz v'Gaon

Oz v’Gaon

“Without the backing of the people, the parents, the council, the IDF and the various other bodies this would not have succeeded, and this is why we came to say Thank you,” said Nadia Matar, Katsover’s partner in leading the movement. Matar listed the activists and donors who contributed to the event as well as to the two-year-old nature preserve.

Katsover gave the family members of the youths a memento, symbolizing the preserve – a small JNF bench with a dedication.

Uri Yifrach, father of Eyal, Hy”d, read aloud words that Eyal wrote just a few days before he was abducted and murdered, in which he related to the value of having difficulties and pain on the way to achieving a goal. “The path is the value, and without the path, you will not arrive at the destination,” Eyal wrote. “We would be glad to do without the path, and get to the goal, but God put us on the path. We must understand that if the path takes time, this is the will of God. The path will exact casualties, it is difficult and grueling but it takes us closer to the goal. Every step on the path creates life, and when you are on the path, give it your all, take advantage of every moment of your life as if it were your last.”

Bat Galim Shaer, mother of Gil-Ad, spoke of the poem “My life is in your blood” that was heard at the event, and “became for us a daily reality, from the pain and bereavement we strive to grow towards life and activity, and Yehudit and Nadia are examples for us.”

She went on, emphasizing the uniqueness of Oz v’Gaon as a place of daily and continued activity and not a one-time memory or event, “a living, growing and breathing place every single day.”

Oz v'Gaon

Oz v’Gaon

Raheli Frenkel, mother of Naftali, Hy”d, drew a parallel with the murder of Hallel Ariel, Hy”d, on Thursday in Kiryat Arba. “We woke up in the morning and the only thing we wanted to do was to embrace the Ariel family and the memory of Hallel, our lost princess. I heard Rina cry, ‘My life is in your blood,’ and this morning became a song in praise of life for those who choose to live here, of the joy that fills this place with energy, with wonderful youth and with visitors who come from all over the world.”

Frenkel expressed the hope that the Jewish youths of the area and throughout Israel will continue to stream to the preserve, to be joyful and complete the dreams for summer vacation that Hallel Ariel, Hy”d, had, dreams that were not fulfilled.

Davidi Perl drew a connection between the weekly Torah portion of Korah, and the growth and renewal that are apparent to all those who come to the preserve. Perl mentioned the saying about the prophet Samuel, who was a descendant of Korah’s offspring who did not die. “From the pit arose the flowering of prophecy, renewal and the prayer of [Samuel’s mother] Hanna,” he said.

Oz v'Gaon

Oz v’Gaon

“Two years ago, a deep chasm opened with the murder of the three youths and we all fell together into the abyss,” Perl said, adding that “with the spirit of Oz v’Gaon this place was born anew. A call went out from here for a renewal of growth, a flowering of life with great depth on the crossroads between Jerusalem and Hebron. In the place that symbolizes this connection we have put down deep roots, two years of yearning and challenges in which we have lost other victims, two years in which the junction became a symbol of heroism and determination, of the people saying that we will stand for our rights and for our demand for full sovereignty over all of the Land of Israel, as our right and not as a gift of kindness.”

The event concluded with a walk to the observation point overlooking Gush Etzion Junction, which had undergone renovation and new artistic decoration in recent weeks. In the presence of the Head of the Local Council, the recently improved path connecting the junction to the nature preserve was dedicated. After words of blessing and thanks, the ribbon at the path was cut and hundreds of blue balloons were released into the air.

JNi.Media

Local Settlers Enforce Siege after Army Deserts Post Outside Murderers’ Village

Sunday, July 3rd, 2016

Dozens of Kiryat Araba and Hebron Mountain Jewish residents who arrived on Sunday morning at the exit road of Bani Na’im village, home to the murderer of 13-year-old Hallel Ariel and many more terrorists, discovered to their chagrin that the total siege declared by the IDF on the village Friday had deteriorated to a mere dirt barricade on the road, with no soldier in sight to enforce the rule — and with the Arabs bypassing the dirt mound without difficulty.

The Jewish residents decided to take matters into their own hands and enforced the siege themselves, with protest tent and signs, and blocked the village’s access road the way it was supposed to be blocked — earnestly.

Blocking Bani Na'im exit

Blocking Bani Na’im exit

The protesters are demanding that the Israeli government live up to its own rules and enforce the closure around the murderers’ village, and evict from the village the Triara family, which to date has produced three terrorists: one who carried out a ramming attack with his car at the entrance to Kiryat Arba a few months ago, one who murdered Hallel Ariel, and one female terrorist who was killed Friday trying to stab a soldier at the Cave of the Patriarchs.

In addition, the protesters are demanding the eviction of every family connected to terrorism.

David Israel

Bennett: Cabinet Meeting Targeted Terrorists Who Do Exits for their Families

Sunday, July 3rd, 2016

Using hi-tech terminology, former startup mogul and current security cabinet minister Naftali Bennett (Habayit Hayehudi) described the young Arab terrorists who have been attacking Israeli civilians as entrepreneurs whose murderous attacks are a form of “exit,” as in the much yearned for exit of hi-tech startup ventures.

“In other words, this one terrorist, who usually suffers from psychological and other problems, decides to do an exit for his family, because when he goes out and gets killed his family starts receiving a monthly stipend,” Bennett told Israel Radio Sunday morning.

According to Bennett, he presented the Saturday late-night meeting of the cabinet with a list of solutions, many of which have been adopted. “Significant decisions have been made,” Bennett told Israel Radio, adding, “The test will be in how they are carried out.”

“We’re talking about a new kind of terrorism, viral terrorism,” Bennett explained. “It’s not organized from above the way we’ve been accustomed to in the past. It emanates from a general inspiration over the Internet, on Facebook and on the social networks, followed by local, personal initiatives. The main inspiration is when an attack succeeds and then this success is reported over the networks.”

“The first incomprehensible thing is that until this day, for every terrorist that was killed, his family started to receive a stipend from the Palestinian Authority. … We now decided that the families of terrorists in the PA will no longer receive this money. We’ll make sure to prevent it.”

Asked how long the IDF could maintain its closure of the Hebron area, with its estimated 700 thousand Arabs, Bennett said the closure is not a solution to the viral problem. “If we proceed with antiquated action it won’t block terrorism. We must adopt new actions to deal with this new kind of terrorism.”

“It is unacceptable that the family of a terrorist will celebrate while we are in mourning. It is unacceptable that the family members of the murderer of Hallel Areil would praise him — and, indeed, they have been arrested and are under interrogation at the moment. This is something we didn’t do in the past. I’d like to see this not as a one-time thing, but as part of the protocol from now on. … These are family members who have contributed to the murder in active and passive illegal ways.”

Regarding the thawing of a construction bid that was frozen a year and a half ago, for 42 new housing units in Kiryat Arba, where the murder of Hallel Ariel took place last Thursday, Bennett told the interviewer, Aryeh Golan, who wondered how this move would prevent terrorism, that the aim of the terrorists is to kick the Jews from Judea and Samaria, and so the proper response is to make certain, with action, that the reverse is taking place.

“You wanted us to leave, but instead we are deepening our roots,” Bennett said, adding that 42 housing units are not nearly close to the number of new housing units that should be built to enhance Jewish life in Judea and Samaria.

“The history of Zionism is filled with examples of new communities that were erected in places where our people have fallen,” he told his interviewer. “Kiryat Shmona, Givat HaShlosha, Ma’ale HaKhamisha,” Bennett cited Jewish communities inside the green line who were named after eight, three, and five victims of Arab violence, consecutively. “The Zionist response has always been to build. For the past one hundred years that’s what we do and will continue to do.”

As to Facebook, which Internal Security Minister Gilad Erdan (Likud) has accused of adding a monstrous contribution to murder of innocent Israeli civilians, Bennett agreed that users of Facebook and other social networks have been instructing Arab youths on how to carry out murderous attacks on Jews, with clear technical details.

“Just as Facebook are using algorithms which automatically and semi-automatically block pornographic material from being uploaded, so can they decide—at a moment’s notice—to impose the same controls on content that encourages terrorism,” Bennett said.

JNi.Media

Security Cabinet Meets Sat. Night on Answers to Terror [video]

Saturday, July 2nd, 2016

The security cabinet is meeting Saturday night following the two murderous attacks on Jewish civilians in Judea and Samaria last Thursday and Friday. Two ministers, Naftali Bennett (Habayit Hayehudi) and Gilad Erdan (Likud) have pointed a finger at one of the culprits in the wave of terror — Facebook, or, rather, the entire Internet and its social networks. Bennett plans to present a plan to take care of “viral terrorism,” including a demand to deny the use of Facebook and the Internet throughout the Hebron Mountain area, where so many terrorists have originated.

Appearing on Channel 2’s “Meet the Press,” Internal Security Minister Erdan attacked Facebook and its founder Mark Zuckerberg, saying, “Facebook is sabotaging police efforts to capture terrorists.” He even added that “the blood of the murdered is on Zuckerberg’s hands,” and called for a citizen’s rebellion against Facebook.

Bennett plans to demand at the cabinet meeting tonight the arrest of every Hamas activist in Judea and Samaria released in the Gilad Shalit deal who have since committed any violations. This has been done once before during the “Return, oh brothers” operation to locate the three Israeli boys kidnapped exactly two years ago, an act that preceded the 2014 Gaza War.

Bennett also insists on a full-scale military operation in areas A and B which are under PA control officially. He also demands blocking Arab traffic on Route 60, where the drive-by murder of Michael Mark was carried out Friday. “We can no longer continue with the old program,” he said, “we must switch the disc.”

The government meanwhile has ordered several steps in response to the attacks. Prime Minister Netanyahu and Defense Minister Liberman approved a bid for 42 new housing units in Kiryat Arba, the late Hallel Yaffa Ariel HY”D’s home town. The bid had been frozen 18 months ago and thawed on FRiday.

The IDF has imposed a complete closure on Hebron and neighboring villages, which includes roughly 700 thousand Arabs. In addition, the IDF has moved two paratrooper units and one infantry unit to the Hebron area.

David Israel

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/security-cabinet-meets-sat-night-on-answers-to-terror/2016/07/02/

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