E-1, between Jerusalem and Ma’ale Adumim
(Map: Israel Hayom)
Israel Hayom published a piece a few days ago by journalist and commentator David Weinberg about the importance of the E-1 area east of Jerusalem. This piece of land, in Area C and thus under full Israeli jurisdiction, is considered critical for Israel to maintain, control and develop for several reasons, including demographic and strategic/security.
From a population growth view, E-1 is the only undeveloped land in the Jerusalem belt that realistically can be developed. It is estimated that 50,000 apartment units can be built here, thus alleviating the severe housing shortage in Jerusalem, while growing the Jewish population in and around the capital.
From a security view, building up E-1 would help secure the east-west Highway 1, running from Tel Aviv through Jerusalem to the Jordan Valley, thus enhancing its value as a military asset. Also, as Weinberg writes, “building in E1 and expanding Ma’ale Adumim eastward are the best ways to augment Israel’s long-term hold across this strategic arc.”
Although for years there have been calls to develop E-1, all Israeli governments have refrained from doing so, purportedly so as to not “inflame passions” that could stymie negotiations with the “Palestinian” Arabs and upset the western powers. However, with a new administration in Washington, PM Netanyahu will most likely soon have to “put his cards on the table” and define in which direction he wants to take Israel while he remains Prime Minister.
This is even more significant now, as President Trump’s personal envoy, Jason Greenblatt recently met with PM Netanyahu and head of the PA, Mahmoud Abbas, purportedly on a fact finding mission. At the same time, Netanyahu’s chief of staff came to the U.S. to discuss the issue of “settlements” with the U.S. administration, specifically, building in eastern Jerusalem and Judea and Samaria.
Why is it that every time Israel announces plans to build somewhere in eastern Jerusalem or Judea and Samaria, the government “temporarily suspends” the plan, typically in response to a request from the U.S.? One glaring example is the diplomatic blowup (albeit, contrived) in 2010 resulting from the announcement to build in the Jerusalem neighborhood of Ramat Shlomo while Vice President Joe Biden was visiting Israel. Today, the Israeli government is “negotiating” its building plans with the new Trump administration, and it is assumed, will once again defer to U.S. dictates.
It is time to proclaim sovereignty throughout the Land of Israel. Critically situated between Jerusalem and Ma’ale Adumim, E-1 must be developed. Now is the time to do so.
An AFSI Reader Responds To Yesterday’s Posting, Good News, Disturbing News
Yesterday’s AFSI newsletter contained two articles: one about the arrest of Omar Barghouti, and the second, about illegal Arab building impacting the construction of the Tel Aviv – Jerusalem rail line.
AFSI reader Shirley L. responded:
Trump needs to tell Abbas there will be no U.S. political and financial support until Abbas completes this 5-step punch list:
1) End all incitement in the media and in its political discourse.
2) Revise all 200 Palestinian textbooks to get the Jew-hatred and Israel-hatred out.
3) Every public square, every “Palestinian” Arab institution named after a terrorist must be renamed.
4) As the PLO charter never recognized Israel and never eliminated its statement that all means including violence should be used to destroy Israel, it must be changed, per the Oslo agreement that Arafat fake-signed.
5) Abbas must tell the PA’s top religious leadership (all appointed by Abbas) that the calls for Jewish genocide in mosques must end, and this must be enforced by dismissing any and every religious leader who does not comply.