Many of us in Israel have been trying to make sense of the March 12 attack on a family quietly sleeping during Shabbat here in Samaria, Israel.
Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu reported on 13 March 2011 in Israel National News that victims of the Itamar massacre were already subject to an earlier attack. The Rabbi Fogel family was expelled from Gush Katif in 2005 when then-Prime Minister Ariel Sharon caved into international pressure to remove Jews from sovereign Israeli territory in Gaza as a “peacemaking” measure. It goes without saying that Israel has received no peace in return for that land. Instead, all Israel got was the 2006 Second Lebanon War in the north, amidst over 4,000 rockets fired from Gaza into the south.
Rabbi Uri Fogel was not one of these religious types who expect State benefits while refusing the mandatory military service. No, Uri Fogel served his country as an IDF tank unit officer. After being expelled from Netzarim in Gaza, he relocated his family to Ariel. They then moved to nearby Itamar two years ago where he taught ex-IDF soldiers in the post-high school yeshiva, or religious school.
Then, they were murdered on Shabbat, 12 March 2011. Knifed in their sleep while a breach in the Itamar security fence went unreported to the local army unit.
When trying to understand what happened, I try to look at the events leading up to the event. One month prior to the Itamar Massacre, Israel removed the nearby roadblock checkpoint (Harriet Sherwood, “Binyamin Netanyahu calls on world to act after killing of Jewish settlers,” The Observer, 13 March, p.15. Reported on www.guardian.co.uk ). Why was a checkpoint removed just before an attack?
During the week before the massacre, Israel was involved in peace talks with the Palestinians. On Thursday 10 March, envoys of the Quartet met in Israel separately with Israelis and Palestinian representatives. (“Quartet ‘Giving Up Hope’ Of Renewing Israeli-Palestinian Talks,” Euro-Asian Jewish Congress, 17 March 2011, http://eajc.org/page32/news22744.html)
Since the massacre, any possible hope of progress from these talks has evidently been undone. (“Massacre Derails Possible Israel-Palestine Peace Talks,” Mamta Badkar, 14 March 2011, http://businessinsider.com/a-massacre-in-itamar-hurts-israel-palestine-peace-agreement-2011-3)
So, the Itamar massacre has made it difficult for peace talks to continue. What is the international response? Force a Palestinian state anyhow. As Barak Ravid wrote in Haaretz, “Growing pessimism about the prospects of a breakthrough in Israeli-Palestinian peace negotiations is prompting new international calls for the unilateral establishment of a Palestinian state.” (Barak Ravid, Haaretz, 17 March 2011, “Quartet ‘Giving Up Hope’ of Renewing Israeli-Palestinian Talks”
Already on Tuesday 8 March 2011, French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe had hinted that the E.U. might recognize a Palestinian state is a “possibility that should be kept in mind.”
The international community wants to force a Palestinian state down Israel’s throat unilaterally. To do this, they must stifle peace talks secretly while supporting them openly. The answer: murder “settlers” who insist on living on Biblical land controlled by the State of Israel. This cancels any conciliatory stance that Israel might have gained, giving the international community reason to step in and force the Two-State “Solution.”
The last time settlers were murdered was in Hebron in September 2010, just prior to direct talks between Israel and the Palestinians. I find it strange that settlers are killed when peace talks are in process.
In the course of things, Rabbi Uri Fogel may well be added to Barry Chamish’s list. What list? The list of those secretly killed by Israel for political reasons: Rabbis Shapiro, Kahane, Lieberman, as well as the attacks on Rabbi Chaim Duckman, and Moledet leader Miriam Lapid’s family. (Barry Chamish, “The Secret War Against the Settlers,” http://israel-politics.tripod.com/War-Against-Settlers.htm, http://barrychamish.com)
Oddly, a man with the same first name as that of the mourning settlement, Itamar Ben Gvir, sued Barry Chamish several years ago for calling him a Shabak agent. Chamish named Ben Gvir as a provocateur complicit in pushing peaceful protests beyond the limit in Netzarim, Gush Katif, leading to the justification of the expulsion. So, Itamar Ben Gvir and his hoods made the settlers look incalcitrant. This gives the Israeli military the excuse they needed to mistreat the settlers and expel them. Then, one settler family, a rabbi with his wife and children, winds up living in Itamar where they are savagely murdered. It begins with Itamar and ends with Itamar. Or does it?
I just got a phone call from a member of our home Bible study group: A terrorist has exploded a bus near the central Bus Station in Jerusalem. This, in addition to the 50 mortar attacks on civilians last week. And, the massacre in Itamar.
All of this pressure builds up toward dividing the Land of Israel into indefensible slices. Giving land to her sworn enemies in return for empty promises of peace. “Peace, peace, but there is no peace.”
“Behold they shall surely gather together, but NOT BY ME,” says YHWH in Isaiah 54. “Whosoever shall gather together against thee shall fall for thy sake.”
¶ Sing, O barren, thou that didst not bear; break forth into singing, and cry aloud, thou that didst not travail with child: for more are the children of the desolate than the children of the married wife, saith YHWH.
2 Enlarge the place of thy tent, and let them stretch forth the curtains of thine habitations: spare not, lengthen thy cords, and strengthen thy stakes;
3 For thou shalt break forth on the right hand and on the left; and thy seed shall inherit the Gentiles, and make the desolate cities to be inhabited.
4 Fear not; for thou shalt not be ashamed: neither be thou confounded; for thou shalt not be put to shame: for thou shalt forget the shame of thy youth, and shalt not remember the reproach of thy widowhood any more.
5 For thy Maker is thine husband; YHWH of hosts is his name; and thy Redeemer the Holy One of Israel; The God of the whole earth shall he be called.
6 ¶ For YHWH hath called thee as a woman forsaken and grieved in spirit, and a wife of youth, when thou wast refused, saith thy God.
7 For a small moment have I forsaken thee; but with great mercies will I gather thee.
8 In a little wrath I hid my face from thee for a moment; but with everlasting kindness will I have mercy on thee, saith YHWH thy Redeemer.
9 For this is as the waters of Noah unto me: for as I have sworn that the waters of Noah should no more go over the earth; so have I sworn that I would not be wroth with thee, nor rebuke thee.
10 For the mountains shall depart, and the hills be removed; but my kindness shall not depart from thee, neither shall the covenant of my peace be removed, saith YHWH that hath mercy on thee.
11 ¶ O thou afflicted, tossed with tempest, and not comforted, behold, I will lay thy stones with fair colours, and lay thy foundations with sapphires.
12 And I will make thy windows of agates, and thy gates of carbuncles, and all thy borders of pleasant stones.
13 And all thy children shall be taught of YHWH; and great shall be the peace of thy children.
14 In righteousness shalt thou be established: thou shalt be far from oppression; for thou shalt not fear: and from terror; for it shall not come near thee.
15 Behold, they shall surely gather together, but not by Me: whosoever shall gather together against thee shall fall for thy sake.
16 Behold, I have created the smith that bloweth the coals in the fire, and that bringeth forth an instrument for his work; and I have created the waster to destroy.
17 No weapon that is formed against thee shall prosper; and every tongue that shall rise against thee in judgment thou shalt condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of YHWH, and their righteousness is of Me, saith YHWH.