WE'VE MOVED! IsraPundit has relocated to Click here to go there now.
News and views on Israel, Zionism and the war on terrorism.

October 10, 2002

Two Outposts Dismantled, More On The Chopping Block

Ben-Eliezer, in his never ending attempt to win favor with the radical anti-Israel left, is once again threatening to destroy Jewish homes in Yesha. While Gush Shalom holds rallies for Barghouti, the loyal citizens of Yesha are sacrificed to the gods of appeasement and Ben-Eliezer’s re-election dreams. I wonder if the Likud and National camp voters who elected Sharon ever dreamed that decisions on Yesha would now be being made according to the bizarre whims of the deranged radical left. Meanwhile the terrorist murderers are being rewarded for their efficiency at murdering Jews. With Ben-Eliezer’s help they may yet attain their goal of a Judenfrei Middle-East. First Assaf, then Hebron, then Jerusalem and then Tel Aviv. We may yet live to see the day when, G-d forbid, Shimon Perez can realize his lifelong dream of personally surrendering Israel to Arafat and then throwing himself into the sea.
(Arutz Sheva) Popular opposition in Yesha (Judea, Samaria, and Gaza) to Defense Ministry plans to uproot Jewish residential outposts in Judea and Samaria is growing, as news of these intentions spreads. Following the dismantling of two unmanned outposts in the Shomron last night - one near Elkanah, and the other one near Kedumim - the Defense Ministry now plans to dismantle 24 more outposts, including at least three populated points: Assaf, at the turnoff leading to Beit El; Hilltop 762, near Maaleh Levonah; and Eshtamoa, near Hevron.

Yesha Council spokesmen say that dismantling the outposts rewards Arab terror, as many of the locations were established in response to murderous Palestinian terrorism acts. One of the two outposts dismantled last night, for instance, was named Gilad in memory of Shomron security officer Gilad Zar, and was situated very close to the site of his murder. In addition, the above-mentioned Assaf outpost, with six families, was established as a strategic outpost along the Jerusalem-Ofrah highway in memory of Assaf Hershkovitz, who was murdered nearby by Palestinian terrorists.

Pinchas Wallerstein, Binyamin Regional Council Chief and a long-time Yesha leader, accused Defense Minister Ben-Eliezer today of "blatant violation of the assurances he gave us." He said that Ben-Eliezer had promised not to evacuate certain places, to take action only via dialogue with the Yesha leaders, and not to '"reward the Palestinians" by evacuating only Jewish areas - "but now we see that he is doing exactly the opposite." Yesha Council sources say that it is clear that Ben-Eliezer is acting out of his own political considerations, and that his desire to win the Labor Party election for party leader next month is motivating his actions.

Arutz-7's Kobi Sela reports that contrary to the past, "when Defense Ministry threats to remove Yesha outposts would be followed by negotiations with the Yesha Council and then the riddance of a few empty caravans from some hilltops ... this time it looks much more serious." At an urgent midnight meeting last night with Central Command Chief Officer Gen. Moshe Kaplinsky, the Yesha leaders learned that he had received strict orders to take down 24 more outposts within no more than a week. One consolation for the residents of the outposts, however, is that the Supreme Court recently ruled that populated outposts cannot be dismantled without prior warning, and that residents must be allowed a hearing before being evacuated.

Regarding the above-mentioned Assaf outpost, Wallerstein said,
"We paid in blood for this site, and this is the true Zionist response. We will continue to remain there, despite Ben-Eliezer's political needs… I can promise you this: We have done a lot in recent years, with the help of the residents and with the help of G-d, and in the coming month, at least 20 new caravans with families will be put up in the Binyamin region."