Things To Do About Security in Yesha

The Yesha Council released a statement yesterday calling for increased security in Jewish communities in Yesha (Judea, Samaria and Gaza). Petitions and letters to Bush are also recommended.

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The Yesha Council released a statement yesterday calling for increased security in Jewish communities in Yesha (Judea, Samaria and Gaza). The call follows comments yesterday by Deputy IDF Chief of Staff Major-General Gabi Ashkenazi while he accompanied Prime Minister Sharon on a tour of the partition being built between Arab-populated areas of Shomron and the rest of Israel. Ashkenazi said that the separation could increase security dangers for Yesha communities. The Yesha Council later called upon Prime Minister Sharon to increase resources for security and defense in Yesha in the face of the new security threats.

During the tour, Mr. Sharon observed that though the fence may help to reduce terrorist attacks from Yesha Arabs, it could lead to an increase in attacks by Israeli Arabs, who would fill the vacuum left by their brethren in Yesha. "Even today," he said, "we are witnessing [Israeli Arab] involvement of this nature." Nevertheless, Sharon said, the fence would be another means to be used in the domestic war on terrorism from the PA.

Sharon said that he also plans to build a partition on the "other side" of the Arab areas, separating the PA-controlled cities from the Jordan Valley. He emphasized that the route of the partition would not influence future borders between Israel and a future PA entity. Former Minister Yuli Tamir (Labor) said that Sharon is thus dividing the PA into separate areas, and that "this proves he has no interest in establishing a Palestinian state." She said that Sharon is "a much greater threat than the 'Right of Return,'" because his plan allows more Arabs in Israel than the Right of Return demands.

Also from Yesha:
An on-line petition addressed to U.S. President George Bush, entitled, "Biblical Israel Reaches Out to President Bush," has been initiated by Jewish residents of Yesha. "Can 19 years of illegal Jordanian occupation negate 3,300 years of Jewish history?" the petition asks, and requests the American Administration not to "expect Israel to allow ethnic cleansing against our own people, who after millennia of murder and persecution have returned to our ancient homeland, and who stand in the frontlines in the war against terror." The petition concludes, "Surely your Administration will not order Israeli governments to order Jews out of Judea and Samaria, the heartland of Joseph and his brothers?" It can be read and signed here.

Similar expressions of concern over American support for a Palestinian state were voiced in a VIPAC letter to Bush today. The letter stated, in part: "At the very time you are risking so much American blood and treasure to dismantle Saddam's terrorist regime in Iraq, you helping the PLO build another one in Israel's Biblical heartland of Judea, Samaria, and Jerusalem. Such a contradictory policy will profit neither Israeli nor American security."