Photo Credit: Air Force Airman 1st Class Albert Morel
US Air Force staff inspect a joint direct attack munition at Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany, Jan. 25, 2024.

Maariv’s Anna Barsky on Saturday night cited officials in Judea and Samaria who claimed there’s a settlements construction freeze and as a result, no construction plan has been approved in the past six months in area E1 (the area between Jerusalem and Maaleh Adumim), which had been promoted by the Lapid-Bennett government, as well as other plans.

According to the sources, Netanyahu and other government officials believed that due to the preoccupation with the war in Gaza, they would be able to push the plans forward more easily under the radar, but the Americans did not approve of this and conditioned the supply of ammunition on freezing construction in Judea and Samaria.


The planned shipment, estimated to be worth tens of millions of dollars, includes about 1,000 MK-82 bombs, KMU-572 Joint Attack Direct munitions that add precision guidance to the bombs, and FMU-139 bomb fuses. Israeli and American sources are saying the shipment is still under internal review, and details could change before final approval by various congressional committees.

The precision-guided weapons will allow Israel to better target Hamas leaders and attack areas where enemy forces are fortified underground. However, a growing contingency in both houses of Congress, as well as the White House, insist that Israel complete the removal of civilians from Rafah before giving their approval to the latest military aid.

In his meeting with President Yitzhak Herzog in Munich on Saturday, Secretary of State Antony Blinken reiterated that “the United States could not support a military ground operation in Rafah without a credible and implementable plan for ensuring the safety of the more than one million people sheltering there.” He emphasized “the need for all parties to take feasible measures to protect civilian lives and prevent the conflict from expanding.”

The Secretary also, how could he not, underscored the US commitment to a “lasting peace in the region, including through the establishment of a Palestinian state with security guaranteed for Israel.”

Meanwhile, Peace Now has posted an extensive list of Israeli outposts in Judea and Samaria which have been legalized in 2023: Avigail, Beit Hogla, Givat Ha’Roeh, Givan Arnon, Mitzpe Yeuda, Malachei HaShalom, Asa’el, Sdeh Bo’az, Shacharit, Mevo’ot Yericho, Nofei Nechemia, Pnei Kedem, Zeit Ra’anan, and Netiv Ha’Avot.

In addition, according to Peace Now, the Israeli government has completed several roads that bypass Arab towns in Judea and Samaria that are renowned for murderous attacks on Israeli vehicles that were forced to drive through on their main road, most notably Huwara.


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