With all the fake news in America right now about the family separating thing, its a good time to take a break and read about current events in Israel!
Two nights ago, 45 projectiles were shot from Hamas-controlled Gaza at Israel. The Iron Dome rocked the house and no one was injured. However, clearly an intolerable situation. Alot of warnings coming from Israeli leaders about the threat of escalation and possible Israeli attempt to end the Hamas rule in Gaza once and for all. Keep in mind, the burning kites keep coming as well and setting fires causing widespread damage. Situation not at all sustainable. All logic/good judgement would lead Hamas to quickly deescalate the situation – probably won’t happen. On the Israeli side of things, every time the Government considers/threatens to disrupt the Yeshiva students and their studies with threats of drafting them to the army, there is a war. So let’s hope they back off…and soon.
This week also saw the demolition of Jewish houses and property in Kfar Tapuach Maarav (West Tapuach). Situation contains many “legal” similarities to the recent very unfortunate destruction in Netiv Ha-Avot in the Gush Etzion region, south of Jerusalem – Supreme Court ruling, no actual arab owners of the land, houses destroyed and the (VERY IMPORTANTLY!!) area now being developed LEGALLY into a large and thriving Jewish community and a serious strengthening of the Jewish Presence in the area. Surveys conducted as a result of the lawsuit from left-wing agitators have determined enough state land for the potential construction of thousands of residential units.
Unlike Netiv Ha-Avot, West Tapuach is fantastically strategic for both the State of Israel and particularly for the “settlement enterprise”. It physically connects the city of Ariel (with its University) to the community of Kfar Tapuach and the crucial Tapuach traffic junction. Without control of the junction, the fledgling Jewish communities to the north (Itamar, Elon Moreh, Har Bracha) and east (Migdalim) would be cut off from the rest of the country and most likely be unsustainable.
In short, as in Netiv Ha-Avot, despite very sad and unnecessary scenes, the future in West Tapuach is quite bright.
Finally, some decisions were handed down by an Israeli court this week about the use of torture to extract confessions. The case involved the firebombing killing of an arab family in the village of Duma almost 3 years ago. Two Jewish suspects are accused of participating – one adult actively and a minor supposedly involved in the planning. They have been held in jail for years and repeatedly tortured. Both have subsequently confessed to involvement. In Israel, the rule is that confessions obtained through torture are not admissible in court. However, when religious Jews are accused and arabs are the victims, that rule doesn’t apply, apparently. So the court ruled that the minor’s confessions will be tossed, but the adults will be used against him. There can’t be a soul in the world who thinks this is actually a form of justice, but everyone has their own political agenda, so no real surprises here. The trial is upcoming. As of now, there doesn’t appear to be any other evidence linking the suspects to the crime. Bizarre? If you think so, you are clearly not paying attention. There’s much more reason to doubt the case against the defendants, but suffice it to say – its quite weak.
Before the houses in Netiv Ha-Avot were destroyed and the same for Amona and now West Tapuach, the “right-wing” government claimed that they were obligated to adhere to the rulings of the Supreme Court and there was no way around it. This week, Prime Minister Netanyahu indefinitely pushed off the the destruction of 2 illegal arab encampments that HAVE BEEN ORDERED BY THE SUPREME COURT!!! So…..yeah.
The reason given for the delay is the scheduled arrival of Jared Kushner and Jason Greenblatt later this week to push their peace plan. This is most likely why no building in Jerusalem has been announced either. Let’s wait and see what happens after they leave.