UPDATES 7 pm Israel time, Friday, January 10 2014:
*This afternoon has seen Palestinian violence throughout Judea and Samaria but especially in Hebron and Qalqilya. At the latter location, Israeli soldiers have fought with “rock” and Molotov cocktail throwing Palestinians. At least one Palestinian has been shot and another was wounded when a Molotov cocktail he was throwing exploded in his hand.
*Bassam Salhi of the PLO Executive Committee articulated yesterday why the Palestinians will never accept a Jewish state of Israel: “The Israeli demand not only recreates the historical narrative of the region, but it would threaten the Palestinian right of return. We totally reject accepting Israel as a Jewish state.”
Threaten the historical narrative? What Salhi really means is that the Palestinian myth of dispossession would be obliterated. At all costs, the Palestinians must preserve and implement the Palestinian “right of return to Israel“. This is why there has never been and will never be peace.
In the midst of all the so-called peace “talks”, the news media has completely forgotten the Golan Heights, but it should be remembered that “returning” the Golan to Syria is a central plank of the so-called Arab Peace initiative. That Israel would ever even be asked to consider such a “return” is outrageous.
In this context, your humble servant has been heartened over the last few months to see the Netanyahu government acting to strengthen Israel’s hold on the Golan.
Yesterday, the government announced $200 million proposal for developing the area which would be divided between the Jewish National Fund, the Ministry of Agriculture, the Ministry of Finance, and the Settlement Division.
Specifically the money is to be used for improving infrastructure: expanding roads, constructing industrial facilities, development of agricultural land and water resources–especially water resources based on recycled water. Also, the proposal will supply money to clear 10,000 hectares of minefields.
This money comes on top of another $210 million that the government has recently authorized to spend on the Druze villages along the Syrian border such as Majdal Shams (where your humble servant spent considerable time this Fall). The money will be focused on education, infrastructure, culture, and welfare.
All of this is good–and long overdue.
The people of Israel stand strongly with the Golan!
Somehow in all th