High-Noon Showdown in Jerusalem over Migron

Minister Benny Begin holds news conference as Migron residents converge on Prime Minister's home.

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Gil Ronen,

Minister Benny Begin
Minister Benny Begin
Israel news photo: Flash 90

Residents of Migron are angrily converging on the Prime Minister's residence in Jerusalem as the government tries to explain why it is reneging on the deal it struck with them.

Minister Benny Begin, who is the government's point man for dealing with the Migron residents, began a news conference at noon, while residents were to start a demonstration outside Binyamin Netanyahu's home two hours later.

Begin opened the news conference with a repetition of a famous statement by his father, the late Menachem Begin: "With G-d's help," he said, "there will be many Elon Morehs." The statement "there will be many Elon Morehs" was made by his father at the community of Elon Moreh in the days when the first Jewish settlements in Judea and Samaria were being built, and Benny Begin's repetition of it is an attempt to assure present-day settlers that he is on their side.

"If things develop, by the end of 2012 there will be 360,000 Jews in Judea and Samaria, one third of them on the Road of the Patriarchs along the mountain ridge. This enterprise is dear to us all and the deeper-rooted the communities become in their land, the better for the State of Israel."

The residents are asking citizens to join their struggle. MK Danny Danon (Likud) called upon Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu not to allow the demolition of homes at Migron. "Twenty years after the death of Menachem Begin," he said, "the State of Israel under the Likud must make a clear, sharp statement: Settling Judea and Samaria and safeguarding the settlement is our raison d'être."