He Ru Follow us: Make a7 your Homepage
      Free Daily Israel Report

      Arutz 7 Most Read Stories

      Blessings from Hebron
      by David Wilder
      Personal Reflections on Hebron, Eretz Yisrael, Friends, Family and anything else that comes to mind.
      Email Me
      Subscribe to this blog’s RSS feed

      David Wilder was born in New Jersey in the USA in 1954, and graduated from Case Western Reserve University with a BA in History and teacher certification in 1976. He spent 1974-75 in Jerusalem at the Hebrew University and returned to Israel upon graduation.

      For over eighteen years David Wilder has worked with the Jewish Community of Hebron. He is the English spokesman for the community, granting newspaper, television and radio interviews internationally. He initiated the Hebron internet project, including email lists of over 15,000 subscribers who receive regular news and commentaries from Hebron in English and Hebrew. David is responsible and continues to update the Hebron web sites, portraying various facets of Hebron, utilizing text, audio, video and pictures. He conducts tours of Hebron's Jewish Community and occasionally travels abroad, speaking at Hebron functions.

      David Wilder is married to Ora, a 'Sabra,' for 35 years. They lived in Kiryat Arba for 17 years and have resided at Beit Hadassah in Hebron for the past 15 years. They have seven children and many grandchildren.

      Links to sites David recommends:
      www.davidwilder.net
      www.hebron.com (English)
      www.hebron.org.il (Hebrew)
      www.machpela.com
      www.ohrshlomo.org (Hebrew)
      www.ohrshalom.net (Hebrew)
      www.womeningreen.org
      www.zoa.org
      (others to be added)

      Shevat 4, 5770, 1/19/2010

      More on Mitchell including call for immediate action


      Senator Mitchell's Wake-Up Call YnetNews, January 13, 2001
      Ambassador (ret.) Yoram Ettinger
      Executive Director, "Second Thought"
      YnetNews, January 13, 2001
      http://goo.gl/yt6y

      The threat issued by Special Presidential Envoy to the Middle East, George Mitchell, to withhold US loan guarantees, in order to extract excessive concessions from Israel, constitutes a wake-up call for wishful-thinkers.

      Senator Mitchell's January 7, 2010 interview with PBS' Charlie Rose refutes the notion that the Obama Administration will accept anything but full Israeli compliance with
      President Obama has yet to respond to the reasonable request of the government of Israel to demand a cessation of incitement from the Palestinian Authority Leaders. The question remains: How will the US respond to the request for the US to ask Abbas to stop praising acts of murder?
      Washington's terms.

      Obama's confidant, George Mitchell, known for his deliberate style, made clear that submission to pressure is not rewarded but punishable by further pressure. That is certainly the case with a White House run by Rahm Emanuel, who is "the meanest shark in town."

      Emanuel and President Obama, his Chicago-politics pal, were elated when Prime Minister Netanyahu rushed on June 14, 2009 to Bar Ilan University, as soon as he returned from a "cold shower" at Obama's White House, to enunciate a major transformation of his world view: The acceptance of the Two States Solution. They realized that their pressure was effective following Netanyahu's September 24, 2009 speech at the UN – which reaffirmed his newly found world view – and the full freeze of construction in East Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria.

      Leveraging their initial success, they now employ the threat of withholding loan guarantees and intensify the pressure on Israel to accelerate the timetable of concessions, to exclude the Jordan Valley from Israel's map of defensible borders, to release more Palestinian terrorists, to make more concessions to Abu Mazen, to refrain from construction even in Jerusalem's Gilo neighborhood, etc.

      Israel's retreat in the face of Obama's pressure is a rarity in a world, which has not been kind to the newly-installed president. His precipitous drop in the polls is the sharpest in recent decades, other than President Ford's. A growing number of Democratic legislators distance themselves from him, lest they be defeated in November, 2010. Furthermore, President Obama is increasingly identified with a 10% unemployment rate, a 17% under-employment rate, a budget deficit which is the highest since 1945, a bigger government, a failed war in Afghanistan and rapidly destabilizing Iraq.

      Obama's Liberal power-base is unhappy with legislative compromises concluded with Blue Dog Democrats.  Republicans are energized by Obama's difficulties and the 30% bloc of Independents, which accorded Obama the 2008 victory, is turning its back on Obama in 2010. Since assuming power in January, 2009, Obama has received slaps in the face from Iran, North Korea, Russia, China, Venezuela, Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan. He has also been targeted by French and West European cynicism. However, Jerusalem is acting as if it is facing an Imperial President.

      In 1992, at the height of the Shamir-Bush battle over loan guarantees, I was told by then Majority Leader, Senator George Mitchell: "Doesn't Israel know that the US is not a monarchy, that the President is not omnipotent and that the Legislature is equal in power to the Executive?!"

      In 2010, Israel still does not get it.  Instead of leveraging critical public and Congressional platforms of support – which will determine the success or oblivion of Obama's policy – Israel approaches Congress as the best supporting-actor in Washington, DC.  Jerusalem is intimidated by Emanuel's warning to "avoid bypassing the Administration via Congress." Jerusalem fails to realize that kowtowing to Emanuel's warning amounts to a slap in the face for the US democracy, the US public and its representatives on Capitol Hill, while severely undermining Israel's own cardinal interests.

      Senator Mitchell's PBS interview reflects Obama's determination to dictate to the Jewish State a full withdrawal to the 1949/67 ceasefire lines, the uprooting of Jewish communities in the Golan Heights, Judea and Samaria, the repartitioning of Jerusalem, the negotiation of the "claim of return" by 1948 Arab refugees and the exchange of land. Such an approach to the Arab-Israeli conflict is a derivative of Oabma's worldview, which highlights the UN as a quarterback of international relations, considers Europe as a role model and Foggy Bottom bureaucracy as luminaries on international relations, burdens the West with partial-blame for international terrorism, regards the Jewish State as part of the exploiting West and the Arabs part of the exploited Third World.

      In facing Obama's pressure, Israel should follow in the footsteps of all Prime Ministers from Ben Gurion to Yitzhak Shamir (1948-1992):Advancing Israel's national security while fending off US Presidential pressure. For instance, Ben Gurion declared independence in 1948 and constructed Israel's nuclear reactor in defiance of brutal pressure by Secretary of State George Marshall and President Kennedy respectively.  Levy Eshkol and Golda Meir built the Jerusalem neighborhoods of Ramot, Neve' Ya'akov and Gilo in response to presidential pressure. And, Menachem Begin destroyed Iraq's nuclear reactor irrespective of painful US, European, Global and domestic pressure. He initialed the Israel-Egypt peace process by overcoming opposition by President Carter, who preferred an international conference over direct negotiations.

      Such steadfastness yielded short-term US-Israel tension.  However, it was rapidly transformed into long-term enhanced strategic respect, by American and Middle Eastern leaders, toward the Jewish State.

      In 2010, Israeli leaders are endowed with a critical mass – which was not enjoyed by the 1948-1992 leaders - demographically (6 million Jews!), economically, technologically and militarily, bolstered by a formidable infrastructure of support in the US. Are the current leaders also endowed with the vision, faith, wisdom and backbone, which are the prerequisite to leverage this critical mass and advance key Israeli interests, while deflecting the Obama Administration pressure?
      *************************************************
      From: David Bedein: contact in Congress: Background on Israeli Demand of US to End To Incitement As Part Of Peace Process

      Today the US Congress convenes for its second session, at a time when e Mitchell is en route to Israel...while there is no response from Obama to Bibi's request to the US to demand end to incitement


      This is the time to swamp the  members of the Middle East Subcommittee of the US House and the near East Subcommittee of the US Senate with this kind of letter:.


      Members of the United States House Middle East  Subcommittee

      www.tinyurl.com/yctm932

      Members of the United States Senate Foreign Relations Subcommittee on Near Eastern and South and Central Asian Affairs:

      http://goo.gl/LHjA

      ===========================================

      SAMPLE LETTER

      From: Me [me@g.com]
      To:      
      Date: 01/19/2010 

      Subject: Israel Asks US to Demand an End To Palestinian Incitement As Part Of Peace Process: What is your position?

      For the first time since the genesis of Middle East peace negotiations, more than 30 years ago, the government of Israel has placed the cessation of official Arab incitement to murder Jews as a condition for the continuation of Middle East peace negotiations. Here is the Israeli government position in this regard:
       
      http://goo.gl/BOz3

      Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu declared after last week's government weekly cabinet meeting: , "It is not only missiles and rockets that endanger security and push peace further off. Words can also be dangerous." In that context Prime minister Netanyahu asked President Obama to demand that the Palestinian Authority Leadership cease and desist from further endorsement of murder and violence against Jews. 
       
      President Obama has yet to respond to the reasonable request of the government of Israel to demand a cessation of incitement from the Palestinian Authority Leadership.

      The question remains:  How will the US respond to the request for the US to ask Abbas to stop praising acts of murder?

      What is the position of Rep..... on this question?  







      Tevet 29, 5770, 1/15/2010

      Act now to stop Mitchell-Israel is not the 51st State!



      Stop Mitchell's latest mission to Israel...the US is actively forcing Israel to acquiesce to declared terror-supporters, namely the PA and their leader, Abu Mazen, thereby infringing upon Israeli sovereignty, endangering Israeli lives and jeopardizing the existence of the State of Israel.
      The United States, personified by James Jones and George Mitchell, revolving under the magic wand of Clinton and Obama, is continuing to exert humongous pressure on Israel, in an effort to obtain continued "good-will gestures," aka concessions to Abu Mazen and the Arabs.

      The pressure cooker's been on the fire ever since the White House changed hands, just a year ago. The results have been far from tasty. American demands, as well as international pressure following Operation Lead Shield and the Goldstone report cooked up covert incitement against the State of Israel, leading to continued rocket attacks against Israeli cities in the south. Of course, Israeli responses are greatly limited due to international Israel-bashing. Any Israeli response is viewed as an unnecessary escalation of violence.

      Israel has been pushed into opening roads and checkpoints to 'ease' the life of Arabs in Yesha and throughout Israel. Such an 'easing' cost the life of Rabbi Meir Chai a month ago.  When Israel reacted by eliminating Rabbi Chai's murderers, the United States demanded an 'accounting' of the IDF action.

      Rock-throwing throughout Judea and Samaria is reaching epidemic proportions, yet an IDF response is virtually nonexistent. Yesterday a baby was hit in the head by a rock in the southern Hebron Hills. It should be remembered: rocks thrown at cars can kill. For those with short memories, Yehuda Shoham z"l, was a five month old murdered by rock-throwing terrorists in June, 2001.

      The opening of Highway 443 and just this morning, the road leading to the Neguhot community in the southern Hebron Hills, to Arab traffic, are overt threats to Israeli lives. It should be noted that the Neguhot road was ordered opened against the recommendations of the IDF. It cannot be a coincidence that this is occurring only a few days before Mitchell is due back in Israel.

      And of course, the world renowned chefs stewed up a forced Israeli building freeze throughout Judea and Samaria.

      Many people don't yet understand the significance of an 'only' ten month building freeze. The problem is that 10 months is only the beginning. Getting around to month 8.5 – 9, we can only guess what goodies the US will bake to try and keep the freeze from thawing.

      But, at present:

      First: Eretz Yisrael - the Land of Israel belongs to the Jewish people. Period. Would any country in the world allow international pressure to force them to agree to a 'building freeze?!'  If it's my land, I can do whatever I want with it. If it's not my land, what am I doing there? Israel's acceptance of a coerced building freeze is tacit acceptance of the claim that Yehuda and Shomron really are not a part of Israel!

      2. An internationally imposed stopping of construction is adding to the already vast split in Israeli society, between the 'right' and the 'left.' This widening gap is causing irreparable harm to Israeli societal norms, and must be dealt with as an internal Israeli issue. However, such compulsory measures, clamped down on Israel from the outside, allow external forces to govern the shape and opinion of Israeli society.

      3. America, as reflected in one of the most revered US historical documents, the Constitutional Bill of Rights, is supposed to be a protective pillar of human rights. International insistence of a building freeze, being implemented against private citizens, is a direct contradiction to the basic human right of a person to be allowed to live freely in his home, on his land. Prevented a family from adding a room on to their house, as a result of foreign insistence, is a blatant infringement of basic human rights.

      4. And finally, of course, the American demands are hitting both individuals and the state where it really hurts, in the pocket. The costs incurred by the freeze are in the tens and hundreds of millions of dollars.

      All of this, of course, according to the United States, is not enough. Keeping all of the above in mind, we reach George Mitchell's threat to Israel: Loan guarantees to Israel can be stopped should Israel not toe the line. The pressure cooker has exploded!

      Israel immediately rejected such threats. The treasury minister proclaimed that Israel can live without the guarantees. Leading American Senators Joe Lieberman and John McCain denounced Mitchell's warning. Speaking in Jerusalem Lieberman said that such pressure would not be accepted in Congress. McCain said that the Senate would not allow the White House to use such measures against Israel.

      Headlines, such as "Major rift between George Mitchell and Israel over loan guarantees" http://goo.gl/G71F began to appear. ABC news: U.S. Envoy's Comments Spark Israel Uproar http://goo.gl/4edi.

      Almost immediately the US tried to play down Mitchell's disdain for Israel. The Jerusalem Post: 'No intention to recall loan guarantees to Israel' http://goo.gl/7xdB. The Christian Science Monitor: US says no plan to cut Israel loan guarantees, but it's been tried before http://goo.gl/D2wy.

      As this drama was (is) being played out, one little tidbit of information was forgotten or perhaps just ignored, due to lack of seeming significance.

      As reported by Palestinian Media Watch:

      This week Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas once again honored the memory of the terrorist Dalal Mughrabi - this time by sponsoring a ceremony celebrating the 50th anniversary of her birth. Mughrabi led the worst terror attack in Israel's history in 1978, when she and other terrorists hijacked a bus and killed 37 civilians. Present at the ceremony were Palestinian dignitaries and a children's marching band. Earlier this year, Abbas sponsored a computer center named after Mughrabi.

      The PA further glorified Mughrabi on the date of her birth when the Governor of Ramallah announced the naming of the "Dalal Mughrabi Square".

      An article by Fatah spokesman Jamal Nazal in the official PA daily defined the terrorist Mughrabi as "the heroine of Palestine's heroines."

      [Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Dec. 30, 2009] http://goo.gl/VJLM

      Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu's opening remarks at last week's cabinet meeting:

      It is not only missiles and rockets that endanger security and push peace further off.  Words can also be dangerous.  Sadly, there has been a retreat in this area in recent months, both within the Palestinian Authority and by its leaders.  Whoever sponsors and supports naming a square in Ramallah after a terrorist who murdered dozens of Israelis on the coastal road – encourages terrorism.  Whoever declares those responsible for the murder of the late Rabbi Meir Avshalom Hai, father to seven children, as holy martyrs – pushes peace further away.

      At the same time, incitement continues in the Palestinian media and education system; in its official media outlets and in the schools under its supervision.  These serious actions represent a harsh violation of the Palestinians' international obligation to prevent incitement.
        http://goo.gl/S7bh

      In other words, while the US is sending more troops to Afghanistan to fight international Taliban terror, it is actively forcing Israel to acquiesce to declared terror-supporters, namely the PA and their leader, Abu Mazen, thereby infringing upon Israeli sovereignty, endangering Israeli lives and jeopardizing the existence of the State of Israel.

      The time has come for the entire American Jewish community, and all lovers of Israel, of freedom and of human rights, of all those who oppose terror and terrorist supporters, to make their voices heard.

      Stop Mitchell's latest mission to Israel. Write now, fax and or email Senators and Congressmen (numbers and addresses found here http://goo.gl/oo6F), demanding that George Mitchell, together with his threats and unconcealed contempt for Israel, must not be allowed to return to Israel.

      Fax and email US consulate in Jerusalem at: +972.2.625.9270
      Email:  UsConGenJerusalem@state.gov and The US State Department: Fax: 202-663-3636 Email: aoprgsmauth@state.gov

      Remind them that Israel is NOT the 51st State!

       

       

       

       

       

       







      Tevet 22, 5770, 1/8/2010

      A Giant Step in the Right Direction


      Yesterday Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon visited Hebron, together with MK Anastassia Michaeli, both of the Yisrael Beitenu party. Ayalon works together with party head Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman. The visitors, together with an entourage that included senior members of the foreign ministry and Hebron leaders, toured Hebron, including Tel Rumeida, Beit Hadassah, the Avraham Avinu synagogue and neighborhood, and of course Ma'arat HaMachpela. Before leaving they participated in a festive lunch which included final summaries of various activities common to Hebron's Jewish community and the Foreign ministry.
      there is this perception that Israel is occupying stolen land and that the Palestinians are the only party with national, legal and historic rights to it…this is morally and factually incorrect

      Speaking to the Deputy Foreign Minister after he arrived, I told him that I'd been waiting decades for people like him to work in positions of responsibility in the Foreign office. Just a week ago he wrote an Op-ed piece in the Wall Street Journal dealing with the difference between 'occupied territories,' as Judea and Samaria (a.k.a. West Bank) are labeled, and 'disputed territories.'  The final two paragraphs read:

      "After the war in 1967, when Jews started returning to their historic heartland in the West Bank, or Judea and Samaria, as the territory had been known around the world for 2,000 years until the Jordanians renamed it, the issue of settlements arose. However, (Eugene) Rostow found no legal impediment to Jewish settlement in these territories. He maintained that the original British Mandate of Palestine still applies to the West Bank. He said "the Jewish right of settlement in Palestine west of the Jordan River, that is, in Israel, the West Bank, Jerusalem, was made unassailable. That right has never been terminated and cannot be terminated except by a recognized peace between Israel and its neighbors." There is no internationally binding document pertaining to this territory that has nullified this right of Jewish settlement since.

      And yet, there is this perception that Israel is occupying stolen land and that the Palestinians are the only party with national, legal and historic rights to it…this is morally and factually incorrect… " ]http://goo.gl/eBHc].

      It's been quite some time since a very senior member of the Israeli foreign ministry made such a declaration.

      While here Danny Ayalon spoke of Hebron as the roots of the Jewish people, saying, 'a people with no past have no future.' When asked about Hebron's future, following any kind of political negotiations, he replied that he expected Hebron's Jewish community to remain here, growing and thriving. When the interviewer persisted, asking if such was Israeli government policy, Ayalon answered, 'I don't know if it's been discussed, but there are some issues which are self-evident and don’t need to be discussed.'

      Ayalon also spoke of the necessity to send both Israeli and foreign diplomats into Hebron, to witness firsthand the cradle of civilization.

      Later in the tour the Deputy FM was asked about TIPH – the temporary international presence in Hebron, which has frequented the streets of the city for the past 15 years [http://goo.gl/C1PS]. Ayalon made clear that temporary is supposed to be just that, temporary, not permanent. He emphasized that renewal of the TIPH mandate, which occurs twice a year, should not be taken for granted.

      This morning the Israeli newspaper Maariv-NRG(internet) [http://goo.gl/8nd3] headlined: It seems that the TIPH mandate in Hebron will not be renewed. Ben Caspit, in Maariv, writes: 'After the visit of Deputy Foreign Minister Ayalon in Hebron, he noted the option not to extend the mandate of Tiph to be realistic.' "They exceeded their authority," he said.   The article reports that Ayalon's trip to Hebron came under orders from FM Lieberman, who ordered him 'to check out  the situation on the ground.' Ayalon told Caspit, "they (TIPH) report harassment of Arabs by Jews, but not the opposite."

      The article reveals segments from a document prepared by the foreign ministry about TIPH: "Sometimes a certain tension  exists between the Government of Israel and TIPH due to our claim that they often deviate from their mandate", for example, "in part by demanding investigations on cases that occurred and / or demands that Israel give report to donor countries. In addition they are involved in very extensive public relations activities, exemplified by a heavily invested web site which features, among other things, forms for Palestinians to file complaints against the Israeli authorities."

      Ayalon's visit was a breath of fresh air. Today's press release, officially recommending that the TIPH mandate not be renewed is a tornado, sweeping into Hebron a totally new atmosphere. The foreign groups plaguing Hebron, including CPT, EAPPI, and others, are headed up by TIPH, which has international recognition and backing. TIPHs removal from the scene will surely weaken the other organizations, and hopefully lead to their swift departure also.

      This is certainly a giant step in the right direction.

       

       

       







      Tevet 18, 5770, 1/4/2010

      Destroying terrorists is not apartheid


      Many times people seem to bristle at the fact that Israeli soldiers patrol in Hebron and, horror of horrors, arrest Arabs. The caption on a photo on the Ha'aretz Homepage points to an article, says, "Border Police arrest Palestinian youth in Hebron on Monday. Akiva Eldar asks why Israeli actions against Arabs can't be called apartheid." ">ttp://goo.gl/kUKi]

      Why? Very simple. In the past two days 4 Arabs armed with knives have been arrested at Ma'arat HaMachpela, all admitting that they intended to perpetrate a terror attack against soldiers or civilians. Is self-protection- self-defense apartheid? Or is it survival? <[br>http://goo.gl/UbjS


      A little while ago I received the following news item on my beeper:
      In Jerusalem police arrested three terrorists, all residents of Hebron, on their way to commit a stabbing attack. The three were arrested by the Jaffa Gate in a Fiat Uno, and raised suspicions of security personnel in the area. After an initial check it was discovered that they carried counterfeit identification papers and were carrying a knife with which they intended to perpetrate a terror attack against Jews. 

      Is this arrest apartheid, or is it self-defense and survival?

      A few days ago a young woman participating on a group tour with me in Hebron raised the following question: She asked how it could be possible that 'killing' could be allowed in Judaism; Judaism decries killed, she exclaimed. She was referring to wars that Israel has had to fight against our Arab enemies. 

      After a short discussion I asked her in return: If I see someone chasing you with a knife, trying to kill you, and I, as a bystander, have the opportunity to kill him before he kills you, what is preferable- that I kill him or that he kill you?

      She answered, of course, that I should kill him.

      I rested my case. 

      But sometimes self defense is not enough. You can never win a defensive war. It's said that the best defense is a good offense. Israel must take the offensive, not waiting until terrorists from Hebron reach Jaffa gate, or even the entrance to Ma'arat HaMachpela. Israel cannot wait to destroy murderers, such as the killers of Rabbi Meir Chai, until after they have attacked. Israel has to hit first, destroying the terrorists before the terrorists can harm even one hair of a Jew.

      Arutz 7 reported tonite: Arutz Sheva has learned that the Shabak received highly dependable information that Subuh had gone back to terror activity after the fugitive “pardon.” The IDF therefore demanded that the PA, which is headed by Fatah, arrest him. The PA refused, apparently because Subuh belonged to a Fatah subgroup and not to rival Hamas. [http://goo.gl/QXMQ]

      If Israel security forces knew, why didn't they take the necessary action, rather than expect Arabs to protect us. Putting our security in their hands is suicide. We've done it before, such as in 1929, such as Oslo, such as the Hebron Accords, such as Gush Katif - why don't we ever learn? Why did Rabbi Meir Chai have to pay with his life due to Israeli stupidity? Why didn't Israel act first to stop the terrorists?

      Such acts are not apartheid - they are actions of a normal healthy country, protecting itself and its people from enemies, determined to destroy them. That is the responsibility of the state's leadership, leadership that Israel is sorely lacking.








      Tevet 15, 5770, 1/1/2010

      Shabbat protest for security near Ma'arat HaMachpela



      This construction is being financed - on the order of tens of millions of dollars – by enemy organizations, as part of the war against the Jewish people and Eretz Israel.
      Hebron-Kiryat Arba leaders call on all area residents to struggle for secure passage to the Tomb of the Patriarchs

      Over the past few days it has became clear that the IDF and Civil Administration are permitting construction of a crowded Arab neighborhood on the access road used by people walking to and from the Tomb of the Patriarchs.

      This road is known as Simtat Erez – the Erez walkway, is named in memory of  Erez Shmuel who was murdered there a number of years ago, and which serves as the access route from Kiryat Arba to the Tomb of the Patriarchs.

      As a result of the terrible terror attack on the nearby Worshiper's Way 8 years ago, the Supreme Court ordered that security measures be implemented in order to allow safe and secure passage on the walkway. They ordered that all 'dangerous areas and windows be sealed, in order to offer protection to people walking to and from Ma'arat HaMachpela.

      A few weeks ago the Hebron Brigade Commander requested that the Erez Walkway be closed to people on Shabbat, and to prevent the passage of Jews through that street for a few weeks in order to allow work on the sewer system in the area. People avoided walking there for a couple of weeks,  believing that this was truly the reason for the closing. However, lately it was noticed that the work being carried out under the noses of the army and civil administration is nothing less than a large-scale construction project, allowing establishment of a large, dense Arab neighborhood, funded by the Gulf States and the Europe Union. This will significantly change the demographic balance in the entire area and result in additional security risks for people, between Hebron and Kiryat Arba.

      After having discovered this fraud, Hebron Kiryat leaders demanded that the Hebron brigade commander reestablish all the security measures which had been dismantled.

      In their letter they wrote, among other things:

      "We want to remind you, that the sealing of these openings became the subject matter in the High Court of Justice , after the state declared before High Court of Justice that security needs are minimal, and after Supreme Court judges (Supreme Court President Aharon Barak, and judges Cheshin and Procaccia - 10497/02 HCJ 10356/0) ruled that these steps should be implemented, and that this is the right balance between the various human rights (right to life, right to worship, freedom of worship and freedom of expression, and property rights). For this reason, the IDF immediately sealed the openings compromising security, otherwise they would have been in contempt of court (as explained to us many times when the IDF acted resolutely against Jewish residents in the city, according to the High Court decision or positions of the Supreme Court). "

      After a week, seeing that construction work was not discontinued, and that people's security was still being compromised, area leaders today called for all residents to participate in a struggle for a secure way to and from Ma'arat HaMachpela. A notice was distributed to Hebron-Kiryat Arba residents, which stated:

      The works are carried out in the area of the Erez Walkway is being done under the guise of misleading fraud: we were told that the work being done was to renew the sewer pipes, and for this reason we stopped on walking there on Shabbat. However, instead of working on the sewer line, a hostile crowded Arab neighborhood is being built. This construction is being financed - on the order of tens of millions of dollars – by enemy organizations, as part of the war against the Jewish people and Eretz Israel.

      All the safety measures placed on the road were removed, and that road is now being abandoned to terrorists and murderers! We will not we reconcile with this situation! We demand that the Arabs cease construction, ensuring the rights and safety of Jewish people in the city of the Patriarchs!

      We should all remember: our physical and spiritual  existence is based on  our connection to the Tomb of the Patriarchs; safe passage to Ma'arat HaMachpela is part of our essence!

      Residents are being called on to participate in a protest called for Shabbat morning  together with rabbis and community leaders.

      Orit Struck, director of legal department of the Jewish community in Hebron, said that "We see ourselves as guardians of the Tomb of the Patriarchs and of the ways to reach this holy site. If we did not struggle for this over the years, Ma'arat HaMachpela today would be in the same condition of Joseph's Tomb in Shechem, or at best, as Rachel's Tomb. We can not allow this to happen. Jews all over the country and the world who come to this holy place are entitled to reach it safely. Even the Supreme Court understood that, after weighing the right of property and freedom of movement of Arabs in the region, nevertheless ruling in favor of the right to life, and the right to freedom of worship. We will not allow this principle to be violated. "


      Sandbags for construction rather than pipe renewal
      Formerly sealed windows, all reopened