Housing Minister Uri Ariel took part in the dedication of a new yeshiva Wednesday in the town of Itamar in Samaria (Shomron).
Ariel called for many more building projects throughout the region. “Today, we’re starting building here. With G-d’s help, we will inaugurate many more homes in Judea, in Samaria, in Jerusalem,” he declared.
“In that way, we will tell ourselves – and the whole world – that ‘the nation of Israel lives’!” he concluded.
The new yeshiva in Itamar will be built in memory of the five members of the Fogel family who were murdered in their home in the town in March 2011.
There is broad-based agreement in government regarding the memorial project, Ariel told the crowd. “I’m telling you, there are many government ministers and offices that want to help establish this yeshiva in the name of the Fogel family,” he said, adding, “This place will be faithful to Torah, to service, to good deeds – like the Fogel family.”
Gershon Mesika, head of the Samaria Regional Council, spoke as well. Mesika linked the event to events that unfolded in the land of Israel thousands of years ago.
“These days we’re reading the Torah portions that tell the story of the righteous Joseph [Yosef Hatzaddik]. Joseph had two central characteristics.
“He was a dreamer – because without dreams, nothing would come to fruition; dreams lead us to action. Without dreams, we wouldn’t have begun to build such a beautiful yeshiva here,” he said.
“Joseph’s other quality was maintaining his identity. Joseph said, ‘I am a Hebrew,’ he did not deny his origins. So too, those of us in Samaria do not deny that our forefathers walked, lived, and built in this place thousands of years ago,” Mesika concluded.