Jerusalem Now!

Mr. Netanyahu, Rise up in Defense of Jerusalem

By Former MK Rabbi Eliezer Waldman
Rosh Yeshiva, Yeshivat Kiryat Arba

The battle for Jerusalem has begun. It is being fought on all fronts: from the streets of Jerusalem; Ramallah; Kfar Darom in the Gaza Strip; and by the Tomb of Rachel in Bethlehem. Jews had to be barred from praying at the kotel and from visiting Rachel's Tomb owing to the riots. Our former government gave weapons to terrorists and called them "policemen". We were told that now that they have been given responsibility and authority, they will help us to fight terror. Our soldiers operated joint patrols together with these terrorists. Yesterday Jewish soldiers were fired upon by these same "policemen" who used the weapons and training we gave them to shoot at our soldiers!

Because of our failure to close Orient House and to prevent the PLO from conducting political activity in Jerusalem, we encouraged them to further defy Israeli authority. It is clear that the riots were carefully planned, and that the opening of the tunnel was a mere pretext to justify them. Arafat is testing the Israeli government to see how it will react under heavy international pressure. He has staged violent protests in the hope that the Israeli response will evoke world sympathy for his cause and force the Netanyahu government to yield to his demands. Since it saw that we did not act to prevent violations of our sovereignty in Jerusalem, the PLO is now trying to further limit our rights in Jerusalem.

Mr. Netanyahu, Rise up in Defense of Jerusalem!

Rather than stand up to the test and maintain his stated policy to react to violence by discontinuing peace talks, our prime minister did exactly the opposite. He called for a continuation of the peace talks! Rather than express outrage at the riots we find our government defending itself, assuring the Arabs that no harm would be caused to their holy places. Riots must be dealt with swiftly and ruthlessly. A policy of responding to terror and murder by elevating the murderers to respectability is an open invitation to the terrorists to continue their carnage.

The sovereign government of Israel has no obligation to explain or apologize to anyone for construction and renovations it chooses to make in its capital. This is our country, our homeland, and no one has the right to tell us what to do here. No other entity has any right to make demands upon the Israeli government.

The riots we see now are the direct result of the Peres plan for a "New Middle East" from which our new government had committed itself to protect us.

Mr. Netanyahu, Rise up in Defense of Jerusalem!

The worst breach of the Oslo accords occurred yesterday when hordes of Palestinian terrorists were incited by Arafat to attack army positions. Terrorists in uniforms shot and injured our soldiers with guns provided to them by the IDF. The most fitting and obligatory response of our government should be "peace talks cannot continue along with terrorist acts and violent breaching of the accords." This is the policy that our Prime Minister declared would guide him in continuing the peace process. Why then were messengers of our government sent to "calm" the leaders of those terrorists, telling them that we want the peace process to continue? This will only bring more terrorist acts. The only thing that deterred terror since our new government came into power was our declaration that any terrorist act will bring a cessation of the peace process. If this is not done, then Arafat will continue to send his violent gangs because he knows that he can get away with it.

Mr. Netanyahu, Rise up in Defense of Jerusalem!

It is better to fight the battle for Jerusalem now, before we have yielded more authority on our land. Arafat is openly calling for Jerusalem as his right. Now is the time to stop him in his tracks. Show him,unequivocally that he has no place in Jerusalem.

I must say, that while it is an admirable quality for a person to overlook insults, that quality is not permitted to a Jewish leader. You have no right to overlook the respect demanded of a Prime Minister. He who insults our Prime Minister insults the Jewish State, the Jewish People and, yes, even the Jewish G-d. Mr. Mubarak, through his puppet media, has degraded and threatened you in the most humiliating manner. Therefore you cannot agree to speak or accept invitations from the Egyptian leader until an apology is offered. He must understand that normal relations cannot be continued without maintaining the proper respect owed to the office of the Prime Minister of the Jewish State.

Jerusalem is our eternal city.Thus, Jewish eternity is dependent upon our victory in Jerusalem. I turn to you again, Mr. Netanyahu, Rise up in Defense of Jerusalem and all of Israel. We are all with you.

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