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Israel @ the Voting Booth

As Israelis cast their ballots at the voting booth today, a downhearted President Reuven Rivlin cast his vote in Jerusalem. Rivlin expressed “deep shame” that Israel’s politicians had forced the electorate into a third election in less than a year.

“We just don’t deserve this. We don’t deserve another awful and grubby election campaign like the one that ends today and we don’t deserve this never-ending instability,” he said. “We deserve a government that works for us.”

The inability to form a government thus far has left Israel hanging in the balance. It’s been almost one year since the first election and with a continued political stalemate the country cannot move forward. We pray the third time will be the charm. Israel’s future – its security and Sovereignty – are depending on it.

We see some cause for hope as 56.3% of eligible Israeli voters cast their ballot by 6:00pm, the highest voter turnout since 1999, and up 2.8% from September’s election. The polls are open until 10pm. Arutz Sheva is reporting low voter turnout in Blue and White strongholds – but the candidates will be out electioneering until the polls close.

Casting his ballot, Rivlin expresses ‘deep shame’ at political morass, by Amir Alon, Nina Fox. YNet News – March 2, 2020

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Maps, Plans and Reality

Avraham Shvut, an urban planner and one of the first residents of the renewed communities in Judea and Samaria, analyzed the map of the Trump plan. Upon comparing it to the Oslo map, he determined that the Trump map is worse and actually more dangerous for Judea and Samaria.

In his lecture, Shvut presented the key points of the TAMA 100 National Outline Plan, initiated by the Sovereignty Movement in which he participated as one of the designers. The main point of TAMA 100 is planning for the State of Israel in the hundredth year since its establishment. As of now, it is the only plan that views Judea and Samaria as an integral part of the State of Israel.Shvut presented his conclusions in a lecture that he gave at the Oz veGaon preserve, during which he emphasized the importance of preparing a long-range plan for building and settlement.

“Maps and plans determine reality”, states Shvut, relating from past experience how, in places where plans were drawn, whether by the Right or the Left, they became the primary basis for execution in the field.

Expert: ‘The Trump Map is worse than the Oslo Map’, by Arutz Sheva Staff. Arutz Sheva – March 1, 2020

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‘A vote for ZOA Coalition is a vote to defend Israel and the Jewish people’ – Yaakov Hagoel

Since the establishment of the modern Zionist movement, the Jewish people have been given the opportunity to influence its path through the Zionist Congress elections. One of the issues I deal with in my role at the National Institutions is to transmit the Zionist message to future generations at a time when screens have replaced books, apps have replaced meetings and 15-second videos have replaced sentences.

As part of our role as “the People of the Book,” it is incumbent upon us to tell the story of the Exodus. We are commanded to remember our past in every generation, but we also have a duty to plan our future.

‘A vote for ZOA Coalition is a vote to defend Israel and the Jewish people’, by Yaakov Hagoel. Arutz Sheva – February 24, 2020

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“Very Significant” News for Ma’ale Adumim

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced that he plans to authorize the construction of 3,500 homes in an undeveloped E1 area of Ma’aleh Adumim. We’ve heard these promises before, but this time it sounds like the real thing! Mayor Benny Kashriel said he believes Netanyahu intends to follow through because the professional staff has already been ordered to work on submission of the plans to the Higher Planning Council for Judea and Samaria.

“We are building up Jerusalem and the outskirts of Jerusalem. I gave an immediate directive, to deposit plans to build of 3,500 housing units in E1,” Netanyahu said.

The Yesha Council welcomed this news for the Israeli communities in Judea and Samaria and the Jordan Valley. It said that the E1 plan would enable “strategic construction” that would link Ma’aleh Adumim to Jerusalem.

Netanyahu says authorizing 3,500 settler homes in West Bank’s E1, by Tovah Lazaroff. Jerusalem Post – February 25, 2020

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Mapping Sovereignty

The joint US-Israel committee tasked with mapping the areas in which Israel would apply its Sovereignty held its first meeting on Monday outside the Samaria city of Ariel.

At the meeting were Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, US Ambassador to Israel David Friedman, his senior adviser Aryeh Lightstone, and Scott Leith, who is the director of Israeli and Palestinian affairs in the US National Security Council.

Ambassador Friedman said before the start of the meeting: “…we’re going to get to work right away. We hope to complete it as soon as possible, and complete it the right way for the State of Israel.”

US-Israel sovereignty committee holds first meeting by Ariel Kahana. Israel Hayom – February 25, 2020

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WARNING! What State Are You Entering? (According to the Trump Peace Plan, That Is.)

Activists from the Regavim organization this week hung signs at 33 different points across Judea and Samaria warning of imminent passage into the borders of the “State of Palestine.” The points are in accordance with the proposed borders of the “State of Palestine” indicated on the “Deal of the Century” map publicized in recent weeks.

The red signs read: “Stop! You are entering State of Palestine” according to the “Trump Peace Plan.”

AFSI agrees. “This map is a catastrophe and we must not accept it.”

Signs across Judea and Samaria warn of entry into ‘Palestine’ as per ‘Deal of the Century’, by Arutz Sheva Staff. Arutz Sheva – February 25, 2020

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How Will Israel Respond as Rockets Rain Down on South?

The IDF struck multiple targets belonging to the Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) on Monday after over 15 rockets were fired from the Gaza Strip. This latest attack on Israel’s south is now in its second day.

The rockets fired on Monday reached the Netivot area for the first time since the PIJ began firing rockets on Sunday. (The photo here shows police searching a children’s playground where rockets landed.)

In an Army radio interview Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu vowed to bring back security to the residents of the South. He stated, “…I’m talking about a war. I only go to war as a last option, but we have prepared something you can’t even imagine.”

Netanyahu threatens war as sirens continue to wail in southern Israel, by Anna Ahronheim. Jerusalem Post – February 24, 2020

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Finally Connected to Power…8 Days Before the Election

Yesterday, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office ordered 12 outposts in Judea and Samaria be connected to the state’s official power grid. Aside from the fact that this move is long over due, it is also seen as Netanyahu’s latest gesture to the Jewish community there just 8 days before the March 2 elections.

Director-General of the Prime Minister’s Office, Ronen Peretz, wrote in a letter to the Defense Ministry’s adviser on settlement affairs, Avi Roeh, that the dozen hilltop communities handpicked for the upgrade “were established many years ago on [what is considered] state land, often times with the government’s encouragement and out of security considerations.”

PM orders 12 illegal outposts be hooked up to power grid, 8 days before election, by Jacob Magid. Times of Israel – February 24, 2020 

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Just Paranoid or Political? Yehuda Glick Interrogated for The Second Time

Police arrived at the home of former MK Yehuda Glick Tuesday night to execute a search. This latest targeting of Glick follows his arrest on the Temple Mount Tuesday morning because he was walking too slowly. This gave the appearance as if he was engaged in prayer, which is forbidden to Jews at the site of two holy temples.

After the interrogation Glick was released to his home under restrictive conditions even though they did not find anything.

This is a vengeful political stunt by the Israel police. The country has real problems to deal with, such as, security and forming a government. We do not want to hear how they waste their time like this. It’s no wonder the public loses confidence and trust in its leaders.

Vindictive Police: 6 Detectives Search Yehuda Glick’s Home following Temple Mount Arrest, by David Israel. The Jewish Press – February 19, 2020

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A Step in the Right Direction Toward SOVEREIGNTY

Members have officially been appointed to a joint US-Israel committee to begin the process of Sovereignty. The committee is being tasked with drawing up a map in specific detail of the areas in Judea, Samaria and in the Jordan Valley in which Israel will apply its Sovereignty.

President Trump appointed the US members of the committee, who are to include US Ambassador to Israel David M. Friedman, his senior adviser Aryeh Lightstone and National Security Council director for Israeli and Palestinian Affairs Scott Leith.

Americans For A Safe Israel welcomes the news of this important first step. As you surely know, SOVEREIGNTY is our favorite topic and we look forward to hearing much more on this in the days and weeks to come.

US-Israel Sovereignty Mapping Committee Announced, by Hana Levi. the Jewish Press – February 15, 2020

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