If, in the past, a person had to be a seer in order to perceive the miracles that the Almighty performs for His people, why, now, anyone can see them, and they are happening constantly. Europe is coping with a stream of refugees that is invading the continent and changing its demography, its culture and its religion. Amazingly, they are especially attracted to Germany.
But the greatest miracle that has occurred in our neighborhood is the repeated declaration of the head of the Palestinian Authority, Abu Mazen, of his intention to annul the Oslo Accords. This is nothing but a precious New Year gift to us. Finally, we may be liberated from this accursed agreement, which has claimed and still claims hundreds of precious Jewish victims, the most recent of which are the Henkin couple, Rav Nehemia Lavi and Aharon Banita, Hy”d. May we be freed from the agreement that sought to distance us from the goal of Zionism and the ethical justice of Israel’s return to its Land. Annulling this agreement will lead to the disintegration of the Palestinian Authority, and this is where the Israeli government must make a courageous decision – application of sovereignty over the entire Land of Israel.
This is not the first time that we have been presented with the opportunity to take the necessary step and commit to it. The first opportunity was immediately after the Six Day War, but we missed that opportunity, and the ones that came after it because of disastrous political negligence. But this is not the time to cry over spilt milk. Now there is a new opportunity on our table.
Let us take hold with both hands of this opportunity that the Almighty has arranged for us. The government of Israel and the People of Israel must resolve and declare once and for all that the Land of Israel belongs to the People of Israel. Without this basis in principle we will be attacked again and again in the international arena as well as in the internal-Israeli arena as “occupiers” and as one who exploits others without our having any actual right to the Land.
It is important to note that this declaration of Israeli sovereignty over the areas of Judea and Samaria and the Jordan Valley is not a punishment or reaction to Abu Mazen’s declaration. Sovereignty is not a punishment, but the right and historic obligation of the Jewish People. Therefore, even if Abu Mazen does not ultimately declare the disintegration of the Palestinian Authority, it will still be incumbent upon the government of Israel to take this step. We are rallying the call for sovereignty especially at this time, since this political opportunity is presenting itself now and we must not neglect it.
Of course there will be difficulties in the promotion and implementation of such a process. To the best of our knowledge there is not even one research institution in Israel that has prepared for the possibility that the areas liberated in the just war might be returned to our hands, and how we must conduct ourselves in such a time. We must act in accordance with the lessons of history – the government of Israel, the Knesset of Israel, must declare sovereignty.
The Arabs must be allowed to have autonomy in matters within their local administration, without a military and without a Department of Foreign Affairs. We will exercise strict control of their educational system and local police. Regarding the issue of citizenship – the Arabs will be given the right to request citizenship, but in order to obtain it, every candidate for citizenship will have to stand up to logical and mandatory criteria such as accepting the authority of Israeli rule, declaring loyalty that will be confirmed every few years, as is the practice in other advanced countries.
One hundred and eighty thousand employees of the Palestinian Authority will be evaluated as to whether they are interested and are suitable to continue to serve their population. It is reasonable to assume that most would want to continue and receive salaries to provide a livelihood for their families.
As stated, of course there would be many difficulties. This is natural in such a situation and changing reality, but beyond the fact that we have already witnessed and felt the impossible pain of the alternative, of dividing the Land and establishing a terror state in its heart, there is also much good that is inherent in the application of sovereignty:
First and foremost, the ethical, value-based issue of the official declaration would be settled, according to which the Land of Israel belongs to the People of Israel, and to it alone. It would put an end to the vacuum of power that has been created in Judea and Samaria during the past twenty years, a vacuum which inflames the Arab ambition to establish a state and leads to Arabs taking control over state lands, many terror attacks and a soft Israeli policy toward terror organizations and operatives. Issues of security, economy, water, sewage and environmental protection, archaeology and more, would become settled, and regarding the diplomatic attacks that Israel would have to absorb from the entire world – she is attacked anyway, without hesitation and without connection to her diplomatic behavior. This time, we would be getting criticized while having brought about a significant and historical achievement.
Our call for Israeli sovereignty over Judea and Samaria has been gaining momentum in recent years. Increasingly, public figures, members of Knesset, heads of local authorities and ministers are speaking of this, but we still need the uplifting tailwind of the spirit from the public. Women in Green together with the members of the second generation of the settlement movement and youths from throughout the entire Land seek to lead this spirit proudly.
And indeed, today Friday October 9, 2015, we will meet in the Oz veGaon Nature Reserve, which is on the hill near Gush Etzion Junction, for a special panel that will deal with the issue. The panel, which will be open to the general public and mediated by Orli Goldklang, will be joined by Likud MK Miki Zohar, Jewish Home MK Bezalel Smotrich, returning MK Shuli Mualem; Yaron Rosenthal, principal of the Gush Etzion Field School; Sarah Haetzni Cohen, one of the heads of My Israel; Moshe Savil, deputy head of Gush Etzion Council; Yisrael Zaira, one of the founders of Jewish Head and economic entrepreneur; and Liat Kirschenbaum, head of the Gush Etzion youth council.
At the event, we will present and bless the new youth movement that will energetically continue the call and demand to apply Israeli sovereignty in Judea and Samaria.
Yehudit Katsover and Nadia Matar