President Reuven Rivlin on Thursday evening addressed an event marking 50 years since the renewal of the Jewish communities in the Golan.
Rivlin described the Jewish communities in the Golan as representative of “pure Zionism, as Zionism for Zionism’s sake, Zionism out of a dedication to the people of Israel, out of a love for the State of Israel, out of a commitment to the security of Israel.”
The President went on to say, “Fifty years of Jewish settlement on the Golan Heights is not just fifty of Jewish history on the Golan Heights. Anyone who knows Jewish history here in the Golan, knows it is a history of 2,000 years. We have here archaeological findings from Biblical times. To be accurate, until the Sykes-Picot Agreement the Golan Heights were forever and always an integral part of the Galilee region. As Begin said, ‘Two colonial powers arbitrarily decided that the border would not go over the Golan Heights, but under the Golan Heights’ - as he put it in the cabinet meeting in which the decision was taken to extend Israeli law over the Golan.”
Rivlin continued, “Today especially, in light of regional changes, it seems to me there are none who would disagree that the Golan is a strategic part of the State of Israel, and is essential to our existence as a people.”
“The internal Israeli debate about the Golan, if there was one, has ended. We will never leave the residents of the Galilee exposed to the intentions and weapons of a regime that massacres its own citizens. The nations of the world must formally recognize that the Golan is an integral part of the State of Israel, and is essential to our existence as a people,” he concluded.