City of Ariel

Posts Tagged ‘Knesset’

A Fourth Term

In Ariel City, Letters on September 18, 2000 at 12:28 pm

Dear Friends,

On May, 2000, for the fourth consecutive time, I ran for Mayor of Ariel in the municipal elections. Once again the public overwhelmingly expressed confidence in me and my team, giving us a 77% victory in the mayoral race and 7 of the 11 city council seats. These results are unprecedented for Israel, particularly for a fourth term of office.

Among the many election issues during the campaign, the important work of Friends of Ariel around the world and the amount contributed annually to foster the development of social services and facilities in our city played an important role. These generous gifts to our community, earmarked for projects in areas like education, health and welfare services, immigrant absorption, recreation facilities and religious services, benefit each and every Ariel family.  The voters wanted to ensure that the co-operation between the leadership of our city and these wonderful friends continues.

I want to convey my heartfelt thanks to all of you for your help and good wishes on my election. My victory is your victory, as well, for our goals are one: to further the growth of Ariel by improving the quality of life in the city and in doing so, strengthening Israel, the Jewish Homeland.

The fulfillment of these goals becomes more important with every passing day. Seven years ago, at the time of the first Oslo Accords, I wrote that no Israeli government would be able to reach an agreement on three major issues: 1. the establishment of a Palestinian State in all of Judea, Samaria and Gaza, with Israel returning to its pre-1967 borders; 2. the division of Jerusalem to create a Palestinian capital and 3. the return of million of Arab “refugees”. Moreover, I warned that in attempting to do so, the government of Israel would be embarking upon a collision course. I repeat that warning today.

Peace is not the Palestinian goal. No matter how many concessions Israel makes, the Palestinians will never be satisfied, as long as Israel is a presence in the in the Middle East. To the Arabs, we are the “Infidels” and the so-called “peace process” is simply a way of playing for time.

We made great concessions to reach a peace agreement with Egypt, yet Mubarak has never made a state visit to Israel (he only came for Prime Minister Rabin’s funeral) and there is virtually no Egyptian tourism to Israel. Is this peace? We have given almost all of Gaza and 40% of Judea and Samaria to Arafat and the PLO, something no Arab country has ever done. When Jordan and Egypt controlled these territories, they were never prepared to give up land to establish a Palestinian State. Only Israel has done that and it is still not enough. The Palestinians continue to spill Jewish blood and Israel continues to give in.

The Prime minister and his government were willing to concede the Golan Heights to Syria but that did not bring peace. We must ask ourselves why?

The behavior of this government, its disregard for democracy and administrative norms and its disrespect for the Knesset have gone beyond all acceptable limits. And all this has been done with the excuse that it is to further the “peace process”; in other words, everything is permissible – abandoning moral and ethical codes, damaging Jewish values and Jewish rights – in the name of that media catchword, “peace”.

If a foreign government would do what our government is doing, with the support of US President Clinton, cries of anti-Semitism would be heard around the world. Imagine the American Administration deciding that 1/3 of the Jews of California – America’s West bank – were to be transferred east of the State line. Would this be acceptable? Yet, the Jewish world establishment remains quiet as Jewish rights in their own land are threatened.

It would be easy for us, here in Ariel to do the same. Ariel is not at risk. Ariel is a “consensus” city today, considered non- negotiable by every major political party in Israel. But here are some 80,000 residents of Judea and Samaria whose homes, whose very futures are in danger. It is my responsibility – all of our responsibilities – to act on their behalf.

It is my hope that our American friends will contact their political representatives, Congressmen and Senators, and tell them to stop pressuring Israel. We, Israelis, whose children serve in the Israel Defense Forces, want peace, more than anything but we want a real peace, a peace that comes with security, trade, tourism and cultural exchanges, a peace that will hold for our children and their children.

May this New Year bring Peace to all of Israel and to you and your families a happy, healthy and prosperous year.

Sincerely,

Ron Nachman

Mayor of Ariel

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Victims of Peace

In Letters, National on April 18, 1995 at 12:43 pm

Dear Friends, 

The terrible atrocity at the Bet Lid intersection in Netanya has left its stamp upon all of us. Although terrorism has been consistently on the rise since the signing of the Declaration of Principles in September 1993, Bet Lid is truly a watershed event. The horror and bloodshed was televised around the world on that terrible day. When the Israeli public saw the murder and bloodshed perpetrated by two Arab terrorists from Gaza and the anguish of the families of our young soldiers, they said, “no more.” They realized that the so-called peace process, promoted by the Rabin government as the end of the terror, was actually accomplishing the exact opposite. This is not peace. 

Since the handshake on the White House lawn between the head of a terrorist organization, the PLO, and the Prime Minister of the sovereign State of Israel, more than 100 innocent Israelis have been killed, so called “victims of peace”. 

I never knew that peace could have victims. I always though that peace was supposed to bring security to the citizens of that country, to the children, young soldiers, men and women. After all, the prime directive of every government is to protect its citizens. 

Under International Law, a sovereign state is responsible for terrorists operating out of its territory. The Peace Treaty with the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan has been signed with a sovereign state. King Hussein is a man of honor and principles, the recognized ruler in his own country. Under his control, there will be no terrorist activity, aimed either against Israel or against Israeli tourists in Jordan. The parties to this treaty, Israel and Jordan, are equal partners, both sovereign authorities, able and willing to control all activity emanating from within their borders. 

The agreement between Israel and the PLO is another matter. The signing of the Declaration of Principles,was a terrible mistake. We have learned very quickly that Arafat’s word cannot be trusted and that he represents only a small minority of Fatah members. 

When the massacres in Afula, Hadera, Tel Aviv and Netanya took place, when Nachshon Waxman was kidnapped, Arafat refused to take the blame. The people of Israel, however, know the truth. The terrorists responsible for the Netanya bombing came from Gaza. Under the Gaza Jericho First Agreement, Arafat controls those areas and is obligated to bring a halt to terror. With 15,000 soldier “policemen” available to him, he still does nothing to prevent terrorists from operating against Israel, nor does he punish those terrorists who have found shelter in Gaza. 

And so, today, Israeli mothers are afraid to send their children to school, their young soldier to their army bases. This is surely not what we expected from “peace”. 

The signing of the DOP has not weakened Arafat’s insistence on three main concessions: A Palestinian State in Judea, Samaria and Gaza; Jerusalem as the capital of that state; and the Law of Return, initially bringing an additional 1 million Arabs to Judea and Samaria, and later to the rest of Israel. The Labor Government, according to Prime Minister Rabin, will not allow for the return of Arab refugees nor the establishment of a Palestinian State. Moreover, it is adamant that Jerusalem remain the undivided capital of Israel.

These two contradictory policies have propelled us on a collision course, and the explosion is imminent. The Foreign Ministry would like to bring forward the permanent status negotiations, in an attempt to avoid this explosion. But it is inevitable, for every government concession to terror only brings more “victims of peace”. And this tragic policy only weakens us in the eyes of the Arabs. Today, the people of Israel know that the Oslo Accords are dead, despite the government’s repeated attempts to resuscitate them. In fact, able to compare them with the peace treaty with Jordan, Israeli realize that this misguided agreement never really had a chance.

In the Knesset, I have repeatedly asked: How does this government intend to prevent the creation of the Palestinian State they so clearly oppose. By causing Jews to leave Judea and Samaria and making it judenrein? By creating a vacuum to be filled by Arafat and his PLO terrorists? And when Arafat declares the Palestinian State, will they finally concede that the PLO is not honoring the agreement and do away with the Palestinian Authority? The government has no solution but the answer is clear: The Jewish communities of Judea and Samaria are not an obstacle to a Palestinian state. 

The current Israeli borders will remain in place only if Jews continue to live throughout Eretz Israel. Living on the strategic highground, the people of Judea and Samaria secure the future of the State of Israel and remain a true obstacle to Palestinian ambitions for statehood. Therefore, if you want to protect Israel, you must strengthen the communities that are ensuring the continued existence of the only Jewish Homeland and building a stronger and more secure Israel. 

Sincerely, 

Ron Nachman

Member of Knesset

Mayor of Ariel