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      Tamar Yonah is one of Israel's most popular English-speaking radio show hosts. She made Aliyah from Southern California and after serving in the Israeli army began a prolific career in radio, including production, news and program development. She was the original creator and producer of 'The Aliyah Show' and still works whenever she can in that field. Tamar is a political activist, wife and mother residing in Judea and Samaria and currently hosts the top-rated shows of The Weekend Edition & The Tamar Yonah Show. Her award winning blog covers current events, religion, politics and anything else that's on her mind.

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      Iyar 11, 5767, 4/29/2007

      Destroying Jewish Farms, Not Terror

      by Tamar Yonah

      Never mind the Arab terrorists. It's the horrid Jewish settlers that are at fault again... and the government won't stand for it.
      Remains of the bulldozed visitors' tent at the Sulam Yaakov Farm
      T. Yonah
       
      Just one day after the country celebrated Israel's 59th Independence Day, specialy trained police forces (Yassam-nikim) and army came with a bulldozer and destroyed a lone tent-like shelter built for visitors at the Sulam Yaakov Farm, 10 kilometers (6 miles) north of Jerusalem.

      The farm, built together by a few families from the village of Kochav Yaakov, once served as a petting zoo with goats and other farm animals. Groves of olive trees were also planted on the site to help restore the land of Israel. Shmuel and Sarah Rachmani, former residents of Kochav Yaakov, live on the Sulam Yaakov (Jacob's Ladder) Farm today, with their children. But the roar of the bulldozer, the crashing of the structure and the show of police force on the farm has traumatized this peaceful pioneer family.
      A terror war is raging in the south of the country. ...but the government apparently decided that their security forces would be better utilized destroying a make-shift visitor tent at the Sulam Yaakov Farm.



      "It was Wednesday morning, about 8:15 or 8:30, and I saw about 6 people in civilian clothing wandering around the area. I figured it must be workers from the electric company." says Sarah Rachmani. "My husband said that we should go out and ask them if maybe they want something to drink. When we got there, we saw they were not from the electric company. Just then, the uniformed security forces swarmed in, and a bull dozer roared in and swiftly mowed down the 'scha-cha' (visitors' tent). The destruction was terrible and traumatic. We protested and begged them to stop, but to no avail.  They finished the job within minutes. We were not notified that the police would be sending forces to bulldoze it. The whole ordeal was very frightening!"

      The irony of this use of force must be noted. A terror war is raging in the south of the country. Kassam rockets are being launched by terror groups from the Palestinian Authority into the homes of Jewish residents in Sderot, but the government apparently decided that their security forces would be better utilized destroying a make-shift tent at the Sulam Yaakov Farm. The structure, made from wooden posts and aluminum sheeting (like a permanent 'succa' or Scha-cha in Hebrew) was built for visitors to the farm to escape the blazing heat of the sun. It was also used as a place to hold Sabbath services for residents of Kochav Yaakov who would walk there to experience prayer in a more natural surrounding.

      Access road in background for Psagot and Kochav Yaakov Yaakov residents
      T. Yonah

      The Sulam Yaakov Farm overlooks an important road which leads to the Jewish communities of Psagot and Kochav Yaakov (seen in the background of above photo). Jewish presence on this hill is neccessary to help maintain security, and to keep Arab terror at bay. It helps to distance any terrorist acts like sniper shootings at families traveling to and from their homes in the nearby Jewish communities. Before there was Jewish presence there, Arabs would come in from a few kilometers away to destroy and pull up all that was planted.

      According to the Kochav Yaakov newspaper, police forces, yasmanikim, army, and the civilian authority raided the Jacob's Ladder Farm around 8:30 in the morning and destroyed the visitors' tent in front of Rachmani's wife and children. "We protested against this act to the commander of the forces there. Now we must look ahead, and stand together as one, as to what might come in the future, G-d forbid... we call all the public to go and protest against these acts."

      The commander of the security forces who had the site bulldozed claims that the action was done with the knowledge of the local YESHA council, yet the local governing body of the yishuv said they were not informed of the demolition plans.

      A father and son look at the destruction on the Sulam Yaakov Farm
      T. Yonah
       

      Some of the questions that need to be asked here are:

      1) Why is this of such importance to the State of Israel's leaders, that this simple visitors' tent be destroyed?

      2) Why was taxpayers' money used to send 2 police vans filled with yasmanikim, and also army troops to bulldoze something that is of no significance to keeping the public safe, while our bretheren are being bombarded by rockets down south? 

      3) How much money was spent to finance this fiasco? Dozens of police and security men were The government needed to pay dozens of security forces for this senseless action, in addition to hiring a bulldozer to come all the way out there and bulldoze some aluminum walls and some wooden posts.

                                                                                                               
      4) This area, as seen in the photos, is nowhere near any Arab homes or near 'anywhere' for that matter. It is out in the hills of the Benjamin council region, the part of Israel that was alocated to the tribe of Benjamin. Who is it bothering then? The Europeans? The world's anti-Semites? Who?


      I am posting this story on my blog because I know the family personally, and I went today to take a few photographs after I heard what happened this week, but it should be posted in the Israeli press. The whole episode is absurd! Bombs are flying in the southern part of the country, but our forces are apparently better utilized destroying 'visitor tents' and 'Houses of G-d', than fighting terror. The day before the destruction in the Sulam Yaakov Farm (on Israel Independence Day) the Hamas terror group fired twenty (yes, I said TWENTY) rockets laden with explosives at Israel's southern city of Sderot. Twenty rockets in one hour(6am-7am) aimed at civilian targets! More rockets were launched later in the day by other terror groups in the Palestinian Authority against Jewish homes and schools.

      Sulam Yaakov. "Almost' in the middle of nowhere.
      T. Yonah

       Our government leaders show restraint and patience towards terrorists, but lack the same tolerance and restraint for Jewish needs. I guess the terrorists, and the Palestinian Authority that funds and protects them, are not dangerous, but synagogues on farms overlooking Jewish access roads are.

      Jewish buildings must be destroyed, and not be tolerated. Terror can.

      What do you think about that?