Daily Israel Report

Elon Moreh Outpost - Down But Not Out

The IDF and the police dismantled an outpost near Elon Moreh today, volunteers were already working to rebuild the site this evening.
First Publish: 7/10/2003, 8:55 PM


The IDF and the police dismantled an outpost near Elon Moreh today - and though a small IDF force was left behind to guard the area, volunteers were already working to rebuild the site this evening.

Elon Moreh resident Noam Livnat, brother of Education Minister Limor Livnat, was present on the site as the evacuation was going on. He first explained to Arutz-7 why the outpost is named Givat Shalem: "It is located right across the valley from the city of Shechem [Nablus], in which the Bible tells us that Yaakov [Patriarch Jacob] arrived 'shalem,' complete."

Livnat said that the site "was already evacuated three weeks ago when there was hardly anything here; but since then, the youth have put up some caravans and a Beit Medrash [Torah study hall], and people are living here... Last night, the army and police came to try to dismantle the site, but many youth came and we declared the area a 'closed civilian zone' [akin to a 'closed military zone'], and the army left. But today the forces came again, in very large numbers - and with five soldiers to each of us, they are taking everyone out of here. They are now taking apart every building and tent - not particularly gently, but I must also admit that not with an abundance of motivation...
"What's clear is that we will be back to build it again as soon as they leave. We were simply not enough people to put strong enough resistance... It's a strange, but welcome, phenomenon, that this new policy of dismantling has awoken the dormant feelings and desire to build Eretz Yisrael in many of our hearts - after every dismantling, another outpost has been built..."

Benny Katzover, long-time Yesha activist and spokesman for Elon Moreh, said that there were some violent aspects to the evacuation, noting that girls were "hit" by the forces, who also destroyed the caravans and burnt construction materials.

Also near Shechem today: Armed Arabs fired at IDF forces north-east of the city early this evening; no one was hurt. To the south of Shechem, six left-wing protestors, including five foreign citizens, were arrested this afternoon for interfering with the soldiers' activities. The police plan to begin proceedings to have the five deported.