MKs on the right are seeking to remove the Civil Administration, the body responsible for administering Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria, out of the realm of the Defense Ministry's authority. A proposal by MK Danny Danon would move the CA into the Homefront Security Ministry, away from the direct control of Defense Minister Ehud Barak, under whose control, Danon said, the CA had become “an enemy of Jewish settlement.”
Danon is proposing the change after the order this week to expel Jews from the Machpela House in Hevron. Although Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu backed the expulsion, Danon and other MKs and activists on the right said that the action was clearly the doing of Barak, who, Danon said, was using Hevron residents as pawns in his bid to get elected to the Knesset. “Since he realized that he will not be given a guaranteed spot on the Likud list, Barak is trying to gather votes from supporters of the extreme Left,” Danon said. “With his recent actions, he has begun his election campaign, which is aimed as his target public on the far Left.”
On Wednesday, Danon filed a request with the Prime Minister and other government ministers formally asking that the Civil Administration be removed from Barak's purview. Instead, the Homefront Command Ministry, now a separate body from the Defense Ministry, would be the administrator of Judea and Samaria. Considering that the Ministry's policies apply equally in Judea and Samaria as they do in “Israel proper,” Danon said that the change made a great deal of sense. The activities of the “refurbished” CA would be monitored by the Knesset Interior Committee.
Matan Vilna'i, who headed the Homefront Command Ministry, was recently appointed Israel's ambassador to China. He is to be replaced, according to sources, by current Minister without portfolio Yossi Peled.
In his letter to Netanyahu, Danon quoted several studies that showed how the CA under Barak gave far greater preferential treatment to Arabs in Judea and Samaria. Barak's policies, he wrote, “have turned the CA into an enemy of Jewish settlement,” a sittuation which needs to be rectified immediately, he added.