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      Batya Medad made aliya from New York to Israel in 1970 and has been living in Shiloh since 1981. Recently she began organizing women's visits to Tel Shiloh for Psalms and prayers. (For more information, please email her.)  Batya is a newspaper and magazine columnist, a veteran jblogger and recently stopped EFL teaching.  She's also a wife, mother, grandmother, photographer and HolyLand hitchhiker, always seeing things from her own very unique perspective. For more of Batya's writings and photos, check out:

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      Tevet 15, 5768, 12/24/2007

      Illegal Building and The Jerusalem Housing Crisis


      Arabs are building willy nilly all over the place,

      and nobody cares. 

      They only get all up in arms

      when Jews build.

      No matter what.

      There's definitely a housing crisis, especially in Jerusalem.  Old houses are being destroyed,

      and a furturistic railway is being constructed,

      but there's no housing for the ordinary working class Israeli.

      The Israeli Housing Ministry must build public housing again in Jerusalem.  It should be exclusively for IDF Veterans, women who served a full two years in Sherut Le'umi, National Service and new immigrants.  The housing must be affordable, expandable, with efficient bus service, education, health, cultural and religious facilities built along with the neighborhoods.  Nothing like this has been constructed since Pisgat Zeev and Neve Yaakov, which combined public and private construction.  If I'm not mistaken Har Chomah was not "public housing."

      If the Israeli Government doesn't see itself as fully sovereign, constantly checking and begging for international approval, then it must be forced to resign.

      I didn't leave the United States to live in an American "puppet-state."