Judea and Samaria: Israel Must Get Serious About This Ancestral Land

Judea and Samaria, Israel Continuity Assurances

Each time I visit Judea and Samaria, Israel, I am reaffirmed by the connection and love that many Jewish people have for their ancestral land.

This story is my opinion and observation, not of others whose name is mentioned here.

It is difficult to keep count of the Israelis murdered by Arab terrorists, but a few were remembered in my visit. There is an unjust liberation pill that Israelis fight to receive, while many enemies in their midst are liars, thieves, barbaric murderers and ingrates.

Touring Judea and Samaria

A few days ago, I reconnected with Boaz Haetzni, a resident of Kiryat Arba, near Hebron. Boaz is a publicist and head of Samaria’s information tours, and a married father of three. We often get together for a day tour that takes us through Samaria’s communities, visiting lone farmers and industries.

These tours reveal to me the true reality on the ground which the media and wrongful politics constantly obfuscate. These experiences help me to fully understand the meaning of the ancestral land – Judea and Samaria – to the nation of Israel. This was land that Israel liberated in the 1967 Six Day War, after Jordan’s illegal 19-year occupation.

Sadly, each time we tour, I am reminded how Israel itself has ill-treated this magnificent land that has such deep-rooted Biblical and historical meaning for the Jewish people. Since 1967, the establishment of Jewish communities in the liberated heartland has been one huge political fiasco.

The Civil Administration

The Civil Administration, which was once called the Military Administration, because Israel did not see fit to annex the liberated territories to its sovereignty, is an expression of Israel’s legal system. However, it is actually the representative of Israel’s judicial system of the political Left, deeply entrenched in Israel’s legal system; it also assists the security establishment of the ‘State of Palestine.’

All together the Military Administration oversees half a million Jews and the Palestinian Authority’s Arabs. These are the only ones living under military rule in the democratic state – Israel.

State Discrimination

Most people do not know that every law passed in the Knesset must be signed by an IDF major general rank officer in order to apply it to the Jewish residents of Judea and Samaria as well. This is voluntary discrimination by the State of Israel against its citizens.

Unwisely, the Israeli government and the Civil Administration, whose task is to manage the affairs of Judea and Samaria, have created this situation of a large ghetto in the territories of Judea and Samaria. In this area, outside the Green Line, the ceasefire line demarcation prior to the 1967 Six Day War, live some half a million Israeli citizens. Many Israeli laws do not apply to them the same way they apply to Israelis – over 7 million – who live in the rest of the state. This is illogical.

Undoing The Fiasco

The man who helps a great deal to undo this fiasco, who navigates carefully and successfully through the ongoing illogical struggle between the Shomron pioneers and the political establishment is Yossi Dagan. He has served as the head of the Samaria Regional Council since August 2015.

Havot Yair-Doron Ben-Zvi office sign. Photo: Nurit Greenger
Havot Yair-Doron Ben-Zvi office sign. Photo: Nurit Greenger
Judea and Samaria. Havot Yair stunning view from Doron Ben-Zvi office, land awaiting its people. Photo: Nurit Greenger
Havot Yair stunning view from Doron Ben-Zvi office, land awaiting its people. Photo: Nurit Greenger

Day Tour: at Havot Yair (Yair Farms)

Havot Yair is a groundbreaking 21-year-old Israeli community, located in Samaria, near Nofim and Yakir, under the jurisdiction of Shomron Regional Council. It overlooks the mouth of Nahal (stream) Kana, half an hour drive from Tel Aviv. The name derived from Avraham Stern (“Yair”), the leader and founder of the Jewish militant group Lehi, who was named after Yair ben Menashe ha-Giladi, mentioned in the Book of Deuteronomy; and also after the biblical settlement “Havat Yair” – Book of Numbers 22:20), which the founders see as the first Israelite “outpost.”

The community accounts for 120 families with 100 in line to be accepted as members.

I was introduced to Adv. Doron Ben-Zvi, a land redeemer, one of the founders of Yair Farm in Samaria. Doron fights the establishment that constantly puts obstacles in the way of Jewish pioneers who wish to make their life in Samaria.

Doron is a religious Jew well versed in Israel’s political intrigues. Since way too many Israelis are secular, removed from their Biblical heritage, he claims that way too many Israelis’ elected ignorance is the greatest enemy of the Jewish pioneering in Samaria. “We wanted to raise a generation of heretics (Epikoros) and we got ‘people of the land,’” meaning, Jews who are not well versed in Halacha (The commandments, laws and prohibitions written in the written Torah and those in the Oral Torah) and Biblical facts. ‘People of the land‘ is the description of “the people living in the country,” that is, in the rural area that is not a city; because of the remoteness and the burden of life, they were less knowledgeable about Halacha than the city’s residents.

We [Israelis] drag after the non-Jewish world, lacking character and backbone.” This is how Doron depicts the obstacles the establishment and the morose Israeli bureaucracy put in front of pioneers like him.

We are a communal settlement, cooperative association. It took ten days from the time my family began our life here until a second family joined us. For ten days we were criminals against our will because the Minister of Defense did not sign the permission to take effect to live here.”

After the Six Day War it was the political Left that encouraged Jews to live in the liberated land of Judea and Samaria, but they long ago distanced themselves from this pioneering enterprise. As for the political Right that has been in power for years, “they have two left hands and they don’t know anything. You need 5 signatures from the Minister of Defense for each stage of construction in a community beyond the non-existing ‘green line’. Why?” Doron continues.

The Likud Party, Israel’s political Right, are not pioneering people. Netanyahu is a political Zionism politician. Former Prime Minister Menachem Begin gave the Arabs their self-determination as ‘Palestinians.’ One transgression leads to another transgression. The Land of Israel is being built on decrees and the decrees come from the Jewish people themselves.”

We are against ourselves, gnawing at our own position. The law along which the Civil Administration operates replaces the Jewish values. The Civil Administration is made of evil jurists and Arab informants who inform the Palestinian Authority (PA) of Arabs who sell land to Jews, which can cause the seller to be tortured and killed by his own people. And the Israelis are constantly fed folly by the media and with other life pressures they have lost all interest and do not care,” Doron ends his observative monologue.

In the Arabic language there is no ‘P’; the ‘P’ becomes a ‘B’. Therefore, in the Arabs’ language there are no “Palestinians” nor “Palestine,” it is ‘Balestinians” or “Balestine.” A people who cannot say their name are not a nation.

After meeting Doron I am encouraged by the strength people like him possess to stand up to Israel’s foolish policies.

Stunning view from Havat Gilad, land awaiting the return of its people. Photo: Nurit Greenger
Stunning view from Havat Gilad, land awaiting the return of its people. Photo: Nurit Greenger

Our Day Tour Continues at Havat Gilad

Havat Gilad, an Israeli community in the Shomron, established in 2002 in memory of late Gilad Zar, its land was redeemed from Arabs by Moshe Zar, a land redeemer all over Israel and security coordinator of the Shomron Regional Council. Moshe Zar’s son Gilad, a 41-year-old security officer for northern Samaria Israeli communities was assassinated in his car by an Arab terrorist, outside Kedumim, the first Jewish community to have been established in Samaria after the Six-Day War.

Here, in a makeshift home, I met my charming host, Elana Shimon. While eating a cold and sweet-as-sugar watermelon and delicious locally-grown Medzhul dates, Elana told me about her 20-year pioneering experience in Shomron.

Rabbi Raziel Shevach, an Israeli father of six, who worked for a living as a mohel (performs ritual Jewish circumcision on a baby boy) and volunteered at Magen David Adom (MDA), Israel’s Red Cross, was murdered in January 2018 by an Arab terrorist. Rabbi Shevach was driving his car near the entrance to the community of Havat Gilad in Samaria, where he lived with his family. As she made her way to the hospital, Raziel’s wife, Yael, said, “I’m shocked and upset by the ease with which we [Jews] are shot like that.”

The consolation for the murder of Gilad Zar was expressed in the establishment of six Israeli communities in Samaria. Immediately after the end of the shiva [the Jewish ritual of seven days mourning period], Karnei Shomron was established; Havat Gilad, an Israeli community with a common goal, was established on Passover, a year after the murder of Gilad, by the young couple Shimon, parents of a baby, whose home was a tent.

After the murder of Rabbi Raziel, Havat Gilad received the overdue administrative approval.

Today, Havat Gilad is proud of the 70 families who established their homes in the community.

Elon Moreh-Mount Eval (right), Mount Grizim (left), Nablus-Shchem between the 2 Mounts, from Elon Moreh restaurant's balcony. Photo: Nurit Greenger
Elon Moreh-Mount Eval (right), Mount Grizim (left), Nablus-Shchem between the 2 Mounts, from Elon Moreh restaurant’s balcony. Photo: Nurit Greenger
Elon Moreh-Kabir winery. Photo: Nurit Greenger
Elon Moreh-Kabir winery. Photo: Nurit Greenger

Our Day Tour Continues at Elon Moreh

Elon Moreh is a religious Israeli settlement in Samaria, adjacent to the city of Nablus, on the slopes of the Mount Kabir ridge, overlooking Tel Balta, which was proposed to be identified with the biblical Sh’chem.

The establishment of Elon Moreh that falls under the jurisdiction of Shomron Regional Council, in which in 2019 had a population of 1,920, was accompanied by a protracted struggle by its founders for about seven years, until receiving approval from the Israeli government for the establishment of the settlement.

During these years, the Gush Emunim movement was formed, which coordinated the civilian activities for the settlement of Jews in Judea, Samaria and the Gaza Strip.

The community is proud of its 10-year-old Kabir boutique winery and a stopover for people who tour the Shomron.

Elon Moreh-Kabir winery. Photo: Nurit Greenger
Elon Moreh-Kabir winery. Photo: Nurit Greenger
Elon Moreh-vineyard. Photo: Nurit Greenger
Elon Moreh-vineyard. Photo: Nurit Greenger

Day Tour Ends at Tom’s Winery With Owner Tomer

The visit was spiritually inspiring.

Tomer is a believer. He began his journey of asking questions and digging into the Jewish faith at 17-years-old. According to Tomer the world’s base is truth, law and peace. He moved to his Samaria solo location 11 years ago in pursuit of belief, virtue, depth and nature.

According to Tomer, the nature of the Jewish people and their essence is to understand and believe that there are deeper layers than reality, and today the Torah is becoming more relevant and profound.

Tom's farm sheer herd. Photo: Nurit Greenger
Tom’s farm sheer herd. Photo: Nurit Greenger

Tomer, who lives with his wife and nine children in a makeshift caravan, grows flowers for export, grapes for wine and sheep for meat. The herd permits Tomer to significantly enlarge his farm’s area, which is very important. The family combines work, schooling, studies and guarding the farm 24/7, a full but difficult life.

In Tomer’s opinion, “the connection of the People of Israel to the Land of Israel is like the bond between a man and a woman of closeness and distance. The role of the Jewish people is to connect the heart of the Jewish people to its lands. If the people of Israel do their true role properly, of revealing God, loving your neighbor as yourself, and possessing attributes, the whole world will meet.” This is Tomer’s belief.

This year is the year of Shmita, the year of Shabbat in the Jews’ agricultural sector, which occurs every seventh year. In this year, the people of Israel are commanded to fulfill the mitzvah of laying down land – to strike from a large part of the crafts in agricultural fields in the Land of Israel, and to abandon the fruits to anyone who wishes to harvest them.

According to Tomer, the Sabbath day and the year of Shmita are a source of blessing, both help gain mental and physical strength. Every Saturday the people of Israel rest from a week of work and every seventh year the people of Israel let the Land of Israel’s lands rest from giving their crop. Then, following this rest, the yield doubles or quadruples.

View from Tom's Farm: Jordan Valley and the mountains on which Rabat Amon, Jordan's capital is located, vast land awaiting its people. Photo: Nurit Greenger
View from Tom’s Farm: Jordan Valley and the mountains on which Rabat Amon, Jordan’s capital is located, vast land awaiting its people. Photo: Nurit Greenger

Living from within requires external matter power while the external has no soul. But, with the people of Israel, matter and spirit go well together,” Tomer explains.

The return of the ancestral land of Judea and Samaria to the State of Israel is the goal and Tomer, in his own way, he already returned a wide area of the land of Israel to its rightful owners.

I spent a day of deep conceptualization with a first understanding of how the people of Israel, who returned to their land after 2000 years of exile, slowly and systematically, are connecting to their ancestral lands, endowed by G-d to his chosen people.

Nurit Greenger
During the 2006 second Lebanon War, Nurit Greenger, referenced then as the "Accidental Reporter" felt compelled to become an activist. Being an 'out-of-the-box thinker, Nurit is a passionately committed advocate for Jews, Israel, the United States, and the Free World in general. From Southern California, Nurit serves as a "one-woman Hasbarah army" for Israel who believes that if you stand for nothing, you will fall for anything.

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