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The Land is Ours! But Without Sovereignty…..

AFSI likes a recent article by Judean Rose that gives the reader an honest insider’s report on life without Sovereignty in Judea and Samaria. Not what life would be like without Sovereignty, but rather, what life is like now without it.

As we approached the northern entrance to Efrat, my husband gasped. A car with Palestinian Authority license plates had run a red light, right in front of us. It was nighttime and we were returning from Jerusalem to our home in the Judean Wilderness. We’d traveled there to receive the second of our two vaccination shots against COVID-19. Watching that car speeding past, the driver ignoring the stop light, my first thought was that this wouldn’t happen if Israel exercised Sovereignty here in this place, in Judea. My second thought was that people have no clue that Sovereignty is about more than land rights.

Sovereignty: It’s Not Just a Question of Land, by Varda Meyers Epstein (Judean Rose). Edler of Ziyon, February 24, 2021

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A Purim First in the UAE

For the first time, the Jewish communities of the six Gulf countries – Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates – will celebrate Purim together.

The event will include a keynote speech by Dr. Sh. Khalid bin Khalifa Al Khalifa, Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the King Hamad Global Centre for Peaceful Co-existence in Bahrain. Thoufeek Zakriya, the Arabic-Hebrew calligrapher living in Dubai, will take part in the event, creating a piece of Purim artwork live.

Rabbi Elie Abadie, Rabbi of the Association of Gulf Jewish Communities, will read the Purim Megillah (Scroll of Esther).

Tonight on Arutz Sheva: For the first time, Gulf Jews will celebrate Purim together, by Arutz Sheva Staff. Arutz Sheva, February 25, 2021

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Purim in Hebron

Hebron has the unique distinction of being one of the few cities in the world that celebrates Purim on two days. Jewish communities in walled cities celebrate Purim a day later. This is derived from the verses in the Scroll of Esther, which state that in the city of Shushan, where the Purim story took place, the holiday was celebrated on the 15th of Adar, rather than the 14th like the rest of the Jewish world.

“There is a safeq (doubt) as to whether Hebron was a walled city at the time of Joshua,” said Rabbi Schlissel, who is head of the Ohr Shlomo kollel, named in memory of his father-in-law Rabbi Shlomo Raanan.

Even if the walls no longer function as a demarcation of the city today, the Jewish sages of the Talmud defined a walled city as whether or not it had a wall at the time of the Biblical leader Joshua.

Thus the megillah, or Scroll of Esther, is read four times, the evening and day readings on the first day and then again on the second day.

Why is Purim Celebrated for Two Days in Hebron?, by Ben Bresky. Jewish Press, February 25, 2021

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In Judea and Samaria The Road to Prosperity Begins

Three years after the hunger strike, work began Sunday in Judea and Samaria on a road to bypass the town of Hawara.

The effort was led by Samaria Regional Council Chief Yossi Dagan, along with then-heads Avi Naim and Malachi Levinger and several bereaved families.

This is one of the most expensive and strategic projects in Judea and Samaria and its cost is estimated at ILS 260 million. The road is intended to connect the center of the country to the localities of Gav HaHar, Yitzhar, Itamar, Elon Moreh and Har Bracha, and will provide a safe trip for residents and passengers to these areas.

Yossi Dagan stated, “This is a groundbreaking, historic moment for Samaria and the entire settlement effort. In about two years, the mountain settlements will become accessible to the center of the country. The road is expected to make traveling in the area safer for both Arabs and Jews, it is hoped that paving the road will lead to prosperity in the area.”

On many AFSI Chizuk MIssions we have driven through Hawara. It will certainly be a tremendous help to the communities in Samaria to have this road built. Talks about it have been on the table for years. Completing this project will make travel to and from the Shomron so much safer. We applaud this long overdue measure.

Work on key Samaria bypass road begins, by Shlomo Witty. Arutz Sheva, February 21, 2021

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SOVEREIGNTY NOW! Smotrich: ‘Judea/Samaria Residents Aren’t 2nd Class’

Religious Zionism Party Chairman Betzalel Smotrich, toured Achiya in Binyamin with Regional Council head Yisrael Gantz, and several candidates of the Religious Zionism Party.

The party members met residents of the young localities Achiya and Aish Kodesh. The young residents demanded a clear promise regarding building communities with the formation of the next government, after the current government refused to approve regulating the localities.

During the tour and meeting, party Chairman MK Smotrich stated that as part of coalition agreements, the party would demand that the government immediately approve the proposal for ‘settlement’ that was not approved about a month ago. They also want the government to approve budgeting for a new administration to regulate ‘settlement,’ similar to the existing one for the Bedouin in the Negev.

“Residents of Judea and Samaria are not second-class citizens,” said Smotrich. “In recent months, Minister Gantz has been torpedoing regulating young settlements for political and campaign reasons. Israeli citizens aren’t political tools. The heroic settlers are equal citizens without equal rights. Electricity, water, infrastructure aren’t luxuries but a basic right. Arranging settlement is a task of paramount importance and we are committed to addressing it from the very first days of the Right-leaning government that will be formed.”

The application of Sovereignty NOW is what AFSI advocates for. It’s long overdue and the longer Sovereignty is not applied, the more the residents of Judea and Samaria continue to suffer. The citizens of Judea and Samaria should come first and have been neglected for too long. It is our fervent hope that true regulation on legally owned Jewish land in Judea and Samaria will take place soon.

Religious Zionism party unveils young settlement program, by Hezki Baruch. Arutz Sheva, February 23, 2021

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Campaign Uses Children to Delegitimize Israel and Biden is Determined to Keep It That Way

Palestinian Authority and international NGOs, funded by European governments and working in tandem with the United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF), have launched a campaign seeking to trigger U.N. sanctions against the Jewish state. This information was released in a report published last Thursday by NGO Monitor.

According to NGO Monitor, UNICEF’s Gaza and ‘West Bank’ branch has “built an extensive campaign, using false charges of abuse of Palestinian children in the effort to trigger sanctions against Israel.” They have prioritized including the IDF on the list of child abusers on a list published annually by the UN Secretary General.

During his tenure, President Donald Trump thankfully cut off funding to the tune of $360 million a year to UNRWA. But anti-Israel forces used other funds to demonize her. Biden is looking to restore millions in aid to organizations such as UNRWA that teach hatred of and terror against Israel. Biden is delusional and should think twice about restoring funding. Given the administration he has assembled, with so much hostile-to-Israel staff, we remain concerned.

NGO Monitor: EU Funding Campaign in Attempt to Trigger UN Sanctions Against Israel, by Ariel Kahana. Jewish Press, February 18, 2021

New hate-mongering scandals at UN agency that Biden means to send millions, by Post Editorial Board. New York Post, February 17, 2021

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Report from Regavim

Israel’s High Court of Justice denies appeal of landowners whose property has been overtaken by thousands of Bedouin squatters: “This case does not justify judicial interference.”

After a decade of legal proceedings, yesterday (Monday) Israel’s High Court of Justice denied an appeal by owners of private property who sought a court-mandated deadline for the removal of squatters from their land – land located on the outskirts of Bir Hadaj, the crime capital of the Negev. “An outrageous miscarriage of justice.”

Yesterday (Monday), Israel’s High Court of Justice rejected a petition filed by individual land owners whose property has been overrun by Bedouin squatters. Over the past number of years, , more than 1,000 Bedouin families invaded state land and private properties on the outskirts Kibbutz Revivim, while rejecting a series of increasingly generous relocation-compensation packages offered by the Israeli government. The owners of the property took their case to court ten years ago, and in their most recent appeal, they sought a court-mandated timetable for the restoration of their property.

Report from Regavim February 23, 2021

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Cooking the Books to Benefit Terrorists

Since the beginning of 2020, the Palestinian Authority (PA) has been trying to hide the financial record of its payments to the Palestinian terrorist prisoners and released terrorists (together hereinafter “the terrorist prisoners”). In 2018 and 2019, the PA monthly budget performance reports clearly listed the transfer expenditures of the “Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs,” which was primarily the payments to terrorist prisoners, as 502 and 517 million shekels respectively. In 2020, the budget category of the “Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs” (later by the PA called the Commission for Detainees’ Affairs) was removed altogether. However, throughout 2020, numerous statements by PA and PLO officials confirmed that the PA continued to pay hundreds of millions of shekels a year in terror rewards. Consequently, it was clear that the PA had decided to pay terrorists in a roundabout way so that there would be no reference to the salaries at all in their budget.

Palestinian Media Watch has examined the PA’s financial reports throughout 2020 and can now report both where the payments are being hidden, and that the amount the PA spent on terrorists salaries in 2020 was no less than 512 million shekels.

How much did PA spend on terror salaries in 2020?, by Maurice Hirsch, Itamar Marcus, and Nan Jacques Zilberdik. Palestinian Media Watch, February 22, 2021


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Fact and Fiction in Area C

The United Nations has called for international support in favor of the Palestinians who again attempted to steal Jewish owned land. The UN call came after the IDF this week prevented Palestinians from erecting new tents at the site of the demolished illegal herding village of Khirbat Humsa in the Jordan Valley.

“The support of the broader international community is critical, to ensure the Israeli authorities guarantee humanitarian access to provide assistance to people in need,” the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) in the Palestinian territories said Wednesday in an appeal it put out for the community of around 100 people.

The community is located in an IDF firing zone, in a remote location, off a dirt road. The Civil Administration demolished its tents in November. When the families erected the tent village a second time, the IDF returned in February, moving tents during five different demolition incidents, after residents continued to rebuild.

Professor Hillel Frisch’s BESA Center Executive Summary states, The Palestinian Authority’s decade-long plan to take control of the West Bank’s Area C is being implemented successfully. This is a historic game-changer in the 100-year-old conflict that requires an immediate and massive Israeli response.

Is what we’ve reported here Fact or Fiction? What’s the truth about what’s really going on in Area C? Could Israel really be losing the battle for land that is legally hers?

Join AFSI this coming Sunday to learn the truth about The Big Lie Of Khirbet Humsa. Naomi Kahn of REGAVIM in Israel will give us the inside story with fact not fiction. You don’t want to miss this! Be sure to register on ZOOM!!

UN calls for international support in Palestinian battle to rebuild Humsa, by Tovah Lazaroff. Jerusalem Post, February 17, 2021

The PA Is Winning in Area C, by Prof. Hillel Frisch. Besa Center, February 17, 2021

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FACT: ICC Based Its Recent Claim Against Israel on False Evidence

The recent announcement by the International Criminal Court (ICC) to open a probe of War Crimes against Israeli actions and soldiers requires an investigation into the behavior of Israel’s (IDF) soldiers and their treatment toward their fellow human beings. It also begs an examination into the State Of Israel’s attitude and dealings with of its Palestinian neighbors.

In his Arutz Sheva article, David Kramer took the opportunity to look further into this and came up with the following findings that prove the ICC is wrong. Also linked on our website is The International Legal Forum’s recent report on Why the ICC Decision on “Palestine” Should Concern You.

Even if the ICC had jurisdiction over Israel, which they don’t, they are basing their claims on false evidence.

IDF soldiers commit Crimes for Humanity, by David Kramer. Arutz Sheva, February 18, 2021

Why the ICC Decision Should Concern You, The International Legal Forum, February 81, 2021

Knesset bill outlines plan to defend Israel from ICC probe, by Ariel Kahana. Israel Hayom, February 17, 2021

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