Likud recruits for settlement - 1,000 new members in two weeks

Likud pro-settlement headquarters filed 1,000 new forms this morning and now numbers 8,000.

Mordechai Sones ,

Likud primaries ballot boxes
Likud primaries ballot boxes
Flash 90

There has been a Likud membership wave due to concern by Judea and Samaria residents and their supporters about sovereignty limited to a small number of localities, a move they call "symbolic sovereignty" or "Israbluff sovereignty".

Fear of such a move and a map that would become a withdrawal map towards establishing a Palestinian state motivates many Judea and Samaria residents and supporters from around the country to join the ruling party in hopes their numbers will swing the balance enough to influence party decisions.

This morning, in the midst of the campaign, leaders of "My Likud - the Likud Settlement Group", Yossi Dagan, Yoni Hayisraeli, and Yaakov Weinberger at Metzudat Ze'ev, met at Likud headquarters in Tel Aviv and submitted 1,000 new Likud membership applications.

These are Judea and Samaria residents and their supporters from around the country, who signed up within the past two weeks. As a result, the number of "My Likud - Likud Settlement Group" members has grown to more than 8,000 people in Samaria and throughout the country.

In Judea and Samaria, some 50,000 Likud voters of the Netanyahu-led party are investing heavily in the preliminary and national elections by gathering this support of the settlers - and no less that of supporters of settlement - who form the backbone of the national camp.

But apparently, in these days of the struggle over sovereignty, the realization among settlers is sharpened that the large gap between the number of voters and the minority who are Likud members diminishes settlement's power, and this drives a wave of settlers to register for the party.

The feeling, according to the settlers, is that voting in the polls gives full credit to a Likud government, but settlers joining the party makes the elected officials beholden to the large group of settlers in the Likud who will lead the ideological struggle for true sovereignty - for all localities and against a Palestinian state.

Samaria Regional Council head and founder of "My Likud - The Likud Settlement Group" Yossi Dagan wrote last night in a letter to Eretz Yisrael activists around the country:

"We say to Netanyahu: Here in Samaria is where we live. You are the prime minister who promised to apply sovereignty and stressed: Sovereignty over all communities in Judea, Samaria, and the Jordan Valley.

"A national government applies full sovereignty. A national government does not freeze construction and does not leave isolated communities behind.

"A national government strengthens settlement and applies sovereignty to it as a whole, true sovereignty - not Israbluff sovereignty.

"We respect the United States very much, we respect Mr. Benny Gantz as well. The Likud was elected by the national public to realize the Rightist vision and Netanyahu's central election promise: Israeli sovereignty over all the communities already tomorrow."

Dagan concluded his letter: "Joinf the Likud now, you and your family, to join us in the struggle and decision, for the communities and for settlement."