Jews Counter-Rally Against Peace Now in Hevron

Radical-left Peace Now group in Hevron demands, with Supreme Court permission, an end to the Jewish presence there; Jews protested back.

Hillel Fendel ,

Machpelah Cave
Machpelah Cave

The radical-left Peace Now group demands, in Hevron, an end to the Jewish presence there. The Jews counter-protested.

Though the Jewish Community in Hevron was unhappy with the Supreme Court's recent decision to allow the protest, the Jews decided not to fall into the trap set for them by Peace Now. "The leftists want to cause a provocation," said resident and activist Itamar Ben-Gvir, "and we won't let it happen. They're expecting us to throw tomatoes so that they can have photos all over the world - but we won't give them the pleasure."

Ben-Gvir explained, however, that they couldn't simply ignore those whose "traitorous actions caused us to run away from Gush Katif and most of Hevron."

In that spirit, therefore, a small but enthusiastic group of some 50 people - including many who do not live in Hevron - demonstrated and held signs boasting of the Jewish People's eternal connection to Hevron and the Land of Israel. The signs read, "Our parents are buried here" [a reference to the Machpelah Cave of the Patriarchs], "No more disengagement from our legacy," "The Kibbutzim are on stolen Arab land," "Hevron is like Tel Aviv," and even just "Traitors".

Many of the Land of Israel protestors arrived on a bus organized by Kumah and sponsored by Friends of the National Young Israel USA, together with representatives of Women in Green and the Nahalal Forum. They stood not far from the Machpelah Cave, separated by police from the 300 leftist protestors who came to demand an end to the Jewish Community in Hevron. The Peace Now group chanted slogans such as, "1, 2, 3, 4 (Arba) - Evacuate Kiryat Arba!" and "Peace yes, Occupation no."

Peace Now is dedicated to destroying the Jewish presence in Judea and Samaria [Yesha], and often seeks out Arabs who will claim that Jewish towns are built on their land.

The PA news agency Ma'an recently thanked Peace Now for publishing a report - false, according to the Yesha Council - alleging that 40% of Yesha communities are built on private Arab land. A Ma'an editorial wrote that the report "shows part of the true face of the Hebrew State... Where are all the Israeli mottos about justice, democracy and civil rights?... This is now a 'ready-to-go' case for the International Court... Now that Peace Now has given this gift to the land-owners, we must thank this organization, and see what the land-owners and the PA will do; for there is much to do..."

This land is not 'occupied,' as some claim; we are rather 'pre-occupied' with this land, and have been for thousands of years
Ben-Gvir said that now that the Supreme Court has allowed a near-provocation by approving the Peace Now rally in Hevron, "we will submit a request to hold a public protest in [the Israeli-Arab city] Um el-Fahm."

Activist Tzafrir Ronen of the Nahalal Forum said, "If an Israeli organization had organized a rally calling for the expulsion of Arabs from Hevron and from the Biblical Land of Israel that belongs to the Jewish People, what would all the righteous people of the legal system say then? Is it legitimate to call publicly for the destruction of the Jewish community in Hevron?"

Also addressing the crowd was broadcaster Yishai Fleisher, who said, "They use the right term when they say they wish to uproot us - for here is where our roots truly lie...  This land is not 'occupied,' as some claim; we are rather 'pre-occupied' with this land, and have been for thousands of years... We are about to read the Torah portion dealing with the spies sent by Moses, who returned with a negative report about the Land; we dare not stand silently by as modern-day spies try to tear us away from our Land once again."