On Tuesday morning, large police forces arrived at Homesh in the northern Samarian hills, disconnected and sabotaged the electrical system of the Homesh Yeshiva that has stood at the outpost for years, and demolished structures and tents of families who came to strengthen and support the people of Homesh.
As you may recall, nine days after the murder of the Homesh yeshiva student Yehuda Dimentman H’yd at the hands of loathsome Arab terrorists, on the morning after a massive solidarity march and rally at the site of his murder, Police, Border Police, and Army units began to demolish family homes and a boarding facility in Homesh, though not yet the Yeshiva building itself or the student’s tent dorm (Days After the Murder, Bennett Government Demolishes Parts of Homesh).
On April 30, 2020, on the orders of then-Defense Minister Naftali Bennett, the study hall and the boarding facilities were destroyed again, as well as the homes of families who had moved back to Homesh.
Following the destruction, the families moved into tents that would protect the children and babies from the rain and the wind, and they were joined by other families who came to strengthen Homesh and make it clear to the government that terrorism should not be rewarded.
The head of the Samaria Council, Yossi Dagan, sharply attacked the government that allowed the destruction of Homes Tuesday morning in Homesh:
The Israeli government has lost its compass. There’s never been such a thing. This is the first time that instead of fighting the terrorists, the government’s response on the ground is to fight the victims, to fight the settlement enterprise. The responsibility for the destruction lies first and foremost with Prime Minister Naftali Bennett. Two weeks after the murder of a student of Yeshivat Homesh Yehuda Dimentman, the government has yet to find time to demolish the homes of the terrorists who murdered Yehuda in cold blood and tried to murder more young people, but for the second time, the government finds the time to demolish homes in Homesh.
What is burning for them to destroy family homes, a shelter from the rain for their children? What is this obsession to disconnect and destroy the electrical system of the yeshiva? This government does what no government dared to do. The responsibility for this obsessive destruction lies with the entire government, headed by Prime Minister Naftali Bennett.
You are the Prime Minister – the responsibility is on you. I demand that the government and Prime Minister Naftali Bennett stop this obsession with destruction in Homesh! The citizens of the State of Israel, every decent person on the right and left, will not support giving this prize for terrorism. It’s time to go back to Homesh! To fully regulate the Yeshiva in Homesh!
The Homesh yeshiva issued a statement saying:
Some people think that the murder of Yehuda Dimentman is a good opportunity to reward terrorism and innovate and implement the disengagement plan again. The tremendous support we have been receiving from tens of thousands of people who come to Homesh in the cold and the rain probably stands fast against this plot and does not allow it to be implemented. This is why police officers are sent in this hallucinatory manner in the morning to evict mothers and children from their temporary tent shelters.
We call on the public to continue to come and support us, strengthen our hold on Homesh, and thus prevent the destruction of the yeshiva!
The residents of Homesh were forcefully evicted from their homes which were demolished as part of the Israeli disengagement from Gaza and four settlements in Samaria in August 2005. Since that time, former residents revisited the ruins multiple times and made efforts to return to the site and rebuild it. In August 2007, an Israeli court ruled that it was not illegal to enter the ruins of Homesh. Nevertheless, the army frequently declares the site a closed military zone and bans civilians from being there. And so, in 2007, the yeshiva in Homesh was re-established by Rabbi Elishama Cohen, together with Benny Gal, a resident of the Givat Asaf outpost.