Photo Credit: Gili Yaari / Flash90
The groups that still oppose Israeli rule over the liberated territories are diminishing.

Following three weeks during which the armies of Egypt, Syria, and Jordan had circled the Jewish State and threatened to annihilate it, on June 5, 1967, Israel launched a preemptive attack, and six days later, at the cessation of hostilities, it had seized Syria’s Golan Heights, the Jordanian-annexed Judea, Samaria, and eastern Jerusalem, and Egypt’s Gaza Strip and the Sinai Peninsula. Many in Israel considered this astonishing victory to be nothing short of miraculous, and the liberated territories of Eretz Israel a gift from God. But while Israeli politicians found enough courage in their hearts to annex eastern Jerusalem and the Golan Heights, they lost their nerve when it came to the Biblical lands “from the river to the sea,” and decided to keep them in a state of limbo.

Needless to say, God was not happy…



Fifty-seven years later, at the Peace Palace in The Hague, the seat of the International Court of Justice (ICJ), the United Nations’ highest court will convene hearings regarding the legal ramifications of Israel’s presence in “Palestinian territories” since 1967. An extraordinary 52 nations are expected to present evidence during these proceedings, including the United States, Russia, and China.

“Why do nations assemble, and peoples plot vain things; kings of the earth take their stand, and regents intrigue together against God and against His anointed? Let us break the cords of their yoke, shake off their ropes from us!” (Psalms 2:1-3)

The UN General Assembly sought a nonbinding “advisory opinion” from the ICJ in December 2022 regarding the “legal consequences arising from the policies and practices of Israel in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem.” And although any ICJ opinion would lack binding authority, it coincides with increasing international legal pressure on Israel for deciding to retaliate for the October 7 Hamas atrocities and moving into the Gaza Strip with large forces to kill the Nazi-like organization.

PA Foreign Minister Riyad al-Maliki. / Flash90

At the commencement of the proceedings on Monday, Palestinian Authority Foreign Minister Riyad al-Maliki addressed the court, asserting that Israel had subjected PA Arabs to decades of discrimination, presenting them with the options of “displacement, subjugation, or death.”


Maliki neglected to mention that during Jordan’s occupation of the “West Bank,” the locals did not dream of demanding a state of their own, and their options between 1947 and 1967 were pretty much also “displacement, subjugation, or death.” Also, according to the PLO, between September 16 and 27, 1970, the Jordanian Legion killed an estimated 25,000 “Palestinians,” giving that period the blood-curdling name, “Black September.”

None of that has ever been debated in international courts, mostly because the rulers in Amman are distinctly not Jewish.

PLO fighters who sought shelter in Israel from the Jordanian death squads, September 1970. / Unknown author

Israel decided not to participate in the hearings, which Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called “despicable” and “disgraceful.”

The Haaretz editorial on Wednesday laid out with pinpoint accuracy everything objectionable that a succession of Israeli governments committed in Judea and Samaria since 1967:

“Israel used the powers and authorities that the laws of occupation give to the occupier to subvert their purposes. Instead of protecting the rights of the Palestinians, it dispossessed them of their lands and enslaved their property for the settlement project. Instead of acting as a temporary administrator of the territory, Israel worked to establish its control over it. Instead of maintaining a fair regime that cares for its subjects, it created an apartheid regime of systematic control and oppression of the Palestinians. And in recent years its captains have been pursuing, in practice and officially, the full legal annexation of the West Bank or parts of it, unilaterally.”


The good news is that support for this view inside Israel, like the support of the Kaplan protests, is diminishing. The bad news is that, much like the notion of resettling the expelled Jews of Gaza in their old homes, there may not be wide support for the annexation of Judea and Samaria in the Israeli public, including secular and Haredi Jews.


Like my late Zeidi and generations of Jews before him, yours truly is a messianic Jew, believing that our redeemer is around the corner and could reveal himself today, this afternoon, somebody park his donkey. One of the signs I see, in my job as a political journalist, is the phenomenon of “berurim” – divine examination.

Right-wing former MKs Michael Ben Ari (R) and Uri Ariel on the Temple Mount, May 20 2012. / Oren Nahshon / Flash90

The Jews are being tested: are we able to overcome our internal disputes to act as a unified people? Can we muster the courage to ignore the superpowers and the rest of our gentile allies and finish the job against Hamas in Gaza? And, speaking of courage, can we finally embrace God’s gift, our long-lost Biblical lands, not as foreign occupiers but as Jews returning to our rightful home?

Our scriptures tell us not to worry about what the goyim would do and, leave that up to God. As the verse in Psalms concludes: “He who is enthroned in heaven laughs; God mocks them (Psalms 2:4). And the verse later promises: “Ask it of Me, and I will make the nations your domain; your estate will stretch to the limits of the earth. You can smash them with an iron mace, shatter them like potter’s ware.” (Psalms 2:8-9)

But we have to ask.


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