Monday, January 20, 2014

We're Not "Blocs"

Israel's prime minister has increased the amount of occupied territory he wants to keep after any peace deal with the Palestinians, Israeli radio reported on Thursday...Benjamin Netanyahu's spokesman declined to comment on the report that he had added a bloc of Israeli-settled land near the Palestinian governmental seat in the occupied West Bank to a list of enclaves Israel intends to retain.  That would leave 13 percent of the West Bank in Israeli hands, Israel's Army Radio said, a prospect likely to dismay Palestinians who want the area for a future state...
According to the report, Netanyahu told U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry that Israel intends to hold on to the Beit El settlement enclave in addition to the Etzion, Maale Adumim and Ariel blocs it has long said it would keep.  Beit El, north of Jerusalem, is next to the city of Ramallah, where Abbas's Palestinian Authority is headquartered.

And in Al-Ahram:

Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has told US Secretary of State John Kerry that he wants to annex a fourth bloc of West Bank settlements, army radio reported on Sunday.  Until now, Israel has always spoken of its intention to annex three blocs of settlements in any future agreement with the Palestinians: the Etzion bloc in the south; Maaleh Adumim to the east of Jerusalem; and the Ariel bloc in the north.

The report said Netanyahu was proposing that Israel also keep hold of a group of settlements deep in the West Bank -- Beit El, Ofra and Psagot -- which lie to the north and east of Ramallah, the radio said.

A settlement bloc is an area where clusters of settlements have been established in relatively close proximity to one another, in which the majority of the West Bank's 367,000 settlers currently live.

If Israel was to keep hold of the "Beit El bloc" as well as the others, it would mean annexing a total of 13 percent of the occupied West Bank, the radio said, describing it as a "very large percentage" of the territory.

Finally, an emergency conference was convened in response to the Kerry's negotiations which took place this evening at Ofra.  

Ostensibly off-the-record to the media, a Hebrew article at Serugim has already appeared.  And one at Radio Kol Hai.

My pictures:

a) Avi Roeh, Yesha Council Chairman, speaking:

b)  Professor Arieh Eldad:

c)  the crowd:

From the Declaration of allegiance to Israel adopted:

The Land of Israel belongs to the people of Israel !

Between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean there is one state - the State of Israel.

...We demand of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the Israel government to stand firm against the obsessiveness with the Secretary of State is pressing the State of Israel into the abyss.

We demand that the Israeli left and the media to stop fanning fears along the lines of an international boycott or threats to a third Intifada...We are grateful to the Israeli public support for the expansion of a Jewish residency presence throughout all parts of the Land of Israel...

We join forces to work together to prevent dangerous plan "two states for two peoples" and will act in all ways to prevent any harm to Jewish settlement in Judea, Samaria, Binyamin and the Jordan Valley...for the people of Israel and security."

I did not get a chance to speak but one thing I would have noted is that the government has not commented on the March Agreement between Jordan and the Pal. Authority assigning to the PA Jerusalem sovereignty and no real details have emerged from the meeting between Abdallah II and Netanyhau last week.

Jerusalem and not only the regions of the Land of Israel not yet under full Israel soverewignty.

And a second theme: we are not blocs.

We are being distracted.  First, the prisoner release.  Then the Jordan Valley.  Now the Beth El bloc.  And on and on.

Its the whole thing.  The whole Land of Israel, west of the Jordan River.  We need to focus on an all-inclusive strategy.

Can you imagine a large helium balloon dropping thousands of little pieces of paper over Ra'anana, Petah Tikva, Kfar Saba, etc., reading "if the government retreats to the Green Line, this paper will be a Katyusha"?

That's my type of hasbara.


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