Thursday, June 11, 2009
Livni Supports Settlement Blocs
Hillel Fendel Livni Expects US Settler Support
Opposition Leader Tzipi Livni told visiting U.S. envoy George Mitchell, President Barack Obama’s personal representative in the Middle East, that the United States has to support Israel’s positions on certain controversial issues, such as Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria and the issue of immigration of foreign Arabs to Israel . “I am convinced that we can reach agreement with the United States on these matters,” Livni told reporters after her meeting with Mitchell, “which are critical to the State of Israel.”
Among the issues that Livni discussed with Mitchell are: ensuring that Arabs who left Israel since 1948 and their millions of descendants not be allowed to enter Israel; implementing security arrangements that will prevent the establishment of a terrorist state or an extreme Islamic state alongside Israel; and “American consideration” of the situation that has developed in Yesha (Judea and Samaria) over the years, including the preservation of large Jewish population centers and sites of religious, national and strategic importance for Israel.
Rivlin to Visit
On Thursday, Knesset Speaker Ruby Rivlin (Likud) will visit two large Yesha towns: Eli in the the Binyamin region of Samaria and Elon Moreh in northern Samaria. MK Rivlin will be accompanied by MK Uri Ariel (National Union), who had a hand in building many of the towns in Yesha as a leading member of the Yesha Council of Jewish Communities in Judea and Samaria for many years.
Last week, State Comptroller Micha Lindenstrauss visited several locations in the Binyamin region, including Psagot, Ofra, Tel Tzion and the Hizme checkpoint. Binyamin Regional Council chief Avi Roeh told him of the discriminatory attitude suffered by the Jewish residents at the hands of the Civil Administration regarding construction permits. He also noted other ongoing problems, such as lack of sufficient funding for security elements, emergency teams, firefighters, protection for buses and private vehicles, public servants, and more. Lindenstrauss said he was very “impressed” during his visit, and said he would investigate the issues that were raised.
Outgoing Police Commander About Settlers: "I Love Them"
Outgoing Judea and Samaria Police District Commander, Shlomi Kaatbi, had his share of disagreements with the Jewish population in Yesha – but upon leaving the post and retiring from the police force last week, had nothing but praise for them:
“I am full of admiration for this population, including those in Yitzhar and those in Hevron. I love them… They are the salt of the earth, and the intolerable ease with which people malign them, calling them settler-terrorists and the like, is simply repulsive. Those who criticize them are those whose willingness to contribute to the country is zero - people who sit around doing nothing in Tel Aviv, parking their 4x4 jeeps on Sheinkin St. [a leftwing yuppie neighbor, drinking their morning Espresso at Café Joe and allowing themselves to criticize…”