Daily Israel Report

Analysis: Jerusalem Is Israel's Heart, but Airspace Is Its Lungs

Netanyahu called Jerusalem 'Israel’s heart,' but Arutz Sheva's Mark Langfan notes Palestinians will never concede its 'lungs': airspace.
By Arutz Sheva staff
First Publish: 5/29/2014, 8:08 PM

F-15i jets
F-15i jets
IAF website

In the wake of Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu's statement that Jerusalem is “Israel’s Heart,” Mark Langfan, Arutz Sheva security analyst, notes that the airspace of Judea and Samaria is “Israel’s lungs,” and just as irreplaceable.

Langfan states, “Without Israeli absolute and total control of the ‘lungs,’ the airspace of Judea and Samaria (the “West Bank”), Tel Aviv, and Israel’s coastal plain that holds 70% of Israel’s Jewish population would be indefensible.”

“Israeli Air force pilots are the biggest intellectual frauds in the world," explained Langfan. "They are the biggest leftist ‘2-Staters’ in giving up the ground of Judea and Samaria, but then they say that Israel has to keep the airspace of the West Bank. Israeli leftist pilots and ‘peace’ negotiators are drinking Kool-Aid if they think Israel can give up the ground of Judea and Samaria, but keep the airspace of the West Bank.”

Langfan illustrates this point with this graphic:

Graphic: Mark Langfan

Dore Gold, a key security advisor to PM Netanyahu, wrote a 2011 article entitled "The West Bank Airspace, the Forgotten Factor of Israeli Security," which iterated Langfan’s central point.

"Indeed, Israeli security experts still insist that no matter where borders are ultimately drawn, Israel must control the airspace over the entire West Bank in any future peace arrangements. Brigadier General (res.) Udi Dekel, who as a former air force officer headed Prime Minister Ehud Olmert’s negotiating team with the Palestinians has made this very point. He wrote a few months ago that Israel must have 'control over a unified airspace . . . which cannot be divided.'"

Gold concluded his 2011 article by echoing Langfan’s very words that Israel “must make absolutely certain that Israel retain control of the West Bank’s airspace, over which there is a strong security consensus that it must be retained by Israel and not divided with the Palestinians.”

Langfan simply observes, “Any Israeli security officer who thinks that the Palestinians will ‘agree’ to allowing Israel to ‘retain’ the airspace of the West Bank is delusional.”