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      Blessings from Hebron
      by David Wilder
      Personal Reflections on Hebron, Eretz Yisrael, Friends, Family and anything else that comes to mind.
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      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)

      Adar Bet 25, 5771, 3/31/2011

      Hebron First!


      As the weather changes, as wintermoves into spring and summer, as the meteorological temperature rises, so too,the geopolitical climate is ascending at a rapid pace.

      It wasn’t too many weeks ago thatrumors of Bibi’s intended US speech, declaring intentions to immediately recognizea ‘palestinian state’ within temporary borders, abounded. Commentators expectedsuch an announcement, perhaps in the Premier’s address before Congress in May.

      Then disaster struck. The Fogelbutchery in Itamar seemed to throw a wrench into the mechanics of Bibi’sseemingly well-oiled machinery. Photographs of a baby stabbed in the heart anda father with his throat cut are not conducive to peace plans.

      Then, again, Arab terror struck inthe heart of Jerusalem, adjacent to the Central Bus station. Again, murder,targeted at the body and soul of every Jew in Israel, only because they areJews, in Israel. It makes no difference that the one fatality was a non-Jewfrom England. Terror is terror is terror.

      Suddenly Bibi’s new ‘piece’initiative seemed to get stuck.

      Our Arab neighbors, not wanting toget pulled deep into Netanyahu’s suggested quicksand, totally rejecting any formof ‘temporary statehood,’ began pushing for a unilateral declaration of ‘palestinianstatehood.’ Building upon anti-Israel sentiment in South America, several countriesannounced their recognition of a ‘palestinian state’ in pre-1967 Judea andSamaria, part of which is presently partially controlled by the ‘palestinian authority.’The winds of the new ‘state’ are quickly transforming into a political tornado,picking up speed and international support. The time and place seem to beSeptember at the United Nations, when the UN will be asked to recognize ‘palestine’as a full-fledged member of the world community.

      It must be clear without mincing anywords. Nothing has changed within the Arab thought process. Abu Mazen has notrepented. He still denies the Holocaust. He has not apologized for his role,planning terror attacks against Jews for decades, including his financing ofthe 1972 Munich Olympics massacre. He continues to honor terrorists. This monthhis advisorSabri Saidam, exclaimed  that palestinianweapons must be turned towards Israel. Under his auspices, a townsquare in El-Birah was named in honor of terrorist Dalal Mughrabi, who participatedin the 1978 Coast Road massacre. The ‘palestinian authority, continuing toincite against Israel and Jews, is nothing less than a PTA – a ‘palestinianterror organization.’

      This has not prevented UN secretary generalBan from castigating Israel, labeling Israel’s presence in Judea and Samaria as‘occupation,’ and ‘morally, politically, unsustainable.’

      As Ban speaks, Arabs are killing Arabs inLibya and Syria, while other Arab tyrants are cranking up their killingmachines in order to deflect any attempts to dethrone them. Yet, it is the ‘Israelioccupation’ that occupies the United Nations leadership.

      Israeli politicians and other public figureshave started reacting to the September Accords. This morning InfrastructureMinister Uzi Landau, a well-known, veteran right-wing leader, suggested thatIsrael annex parts of Judea and Samaria in reaction to declaration of a ‘palestinianstate.’ Landau isn’t the first to make such a declaration. However, Landau’ssolution is partial and lacking, in that he proclaimed that the ‘largesettlement blocks within the national consensus’ should be made part ofsovereign Israel.

      And so I ask, what about Hebron?

      Actually, there is no doubt in my mind thatall of Judea and Samaria are part of Israel, and as such, should be officiallyannexed. However, if the state of Israel, for whatever reason, prefers toestablish an annexation process, declaring statehood in Judea and Samarialittle by little, what better a place to begin than Hebron?!

      Recently Education minister Saar announcedthat all Israeli schoolchildren should and would visit Hebron and Ma’aratHaMachpela. In a survey conducted amongst high school teachers, over seventyeight percent supported this decision. As reported on Kol Yisrael radio onMarch 21, the head of the teacher’s union, Ron Erez, commented that “thisresult proves that educators are not only teaching with an aim of achievement,rather they are also looking at the roots of our state, our education, anddeepening those roots, bond them to Eretz Yisrael.”

      David began his rule in Hebron, and remainedhere for over seven years, thereby immersing himself, not as an individual, butas King of Israel, in the sanctity of our Patriarchs and Matriarchs, prior tomoving up to Jerusalem, the eternal capital of Israel. Following in thefootsteps of David, it would seem natural that still today, Hebron is the placeto start.

      Jewish Hebron is, in the eyes of the world, aseeming question mark. How can Israel dare allow Jews to live in the firstJewish city in Israel? Hebron is, in their opinion, the epitome of Israeli intransigenceand foreign occupation.

      The time has come to put an end to any suchquestion marks. Hebron, the roots of our people, is, always was, and alwayswill be, a Jewish, Israeli city. The fact that Arabs too live here, so what!That cannot and does not erase the core significance of Hebron, throughout thegenerations, to the Jewish people.

      For seven hundred years Jews were forciblyprevented from accessing building atop the caves of Machpela, the 2ndholiest site in the world. Yet Jews did not forget their roots, yearning forthe day when they could return to visit, worship and identify at this sacredmonument.

      As such, nothing could be more fitting than adeclaration of “Hebron First.” On the day that the UN declares acceptance of a ‘palestinianstate’ the Knesset should vote to extend full Israeli sovereignty on the cityof Hebron, again declaring the Jewish people’s allegiance to our age-old heritage.This historic event will open the eyes of the world-at-large, proving to themthat we, the Jewish people in the State of Israel, will never, ever, abandonour ancient homeland.

      And they will know: Hebron First is only thebeginning.