Daily Israel Report

'The Building in Judea and Samaria Must Continue'

Rabbi Jonathan Blass of Neve Tzuf speaks of the Fogel family, whom he knows personally, and about the messages from the murder.
By Elad Benari and Yoni Kempinski
First Publish: 4/11/2011, 9:52 PM / Last Update: 4/12/2011, 3:16 AM

On Sunday, 30 days were marked since the brutal murder by terrorists of the Fogel family in their home in Itamar. Family and friends gathered in Itamar, where the cornerstone was laid for Mishkan Ehud, a new study hall that will be built in honor of the slain Rabbi Ehud (Udi) Fogel.

Among the participants in the memorial service was Rabbi Jonathan Blass, rabbi of the community of Neve Tzuf, in which Udi Fogel’s parents live.

“There’s a great sense of loss because of the tragedy of the murder that took place,” said Rabbi Blass in a conversation with INN TV’s Yoni Kempinski.

Rabbi Blass added that beyond the sense of loss, there is also “a sense of determination to continue to build and to expand on those things that were important to the people who were murdered.”

He said that he has known the Fogel family for many years. “The family has been involved with the settlement of Judea and Samaria for many years. Wonderful people, very brave. They’re filled with Jewish faith and faith in the Jewish future.”

According to Rabbi Blass, there are two main messages from this brutal massacre.

“One [message] is that the State of Israel has to take those necessary military measures in order to ensure this kind of thing doesn’t happen,” he said and added: “With all due respect to the international community, I think the time has come to brave those pressures and to take the steps necessary to ensure the security of the people who live all throughout Israel.”

The second message, according to Rabbi Blass is that “the building in Judea and Samaria must continue at a much more accelerated pace.”