On May 23, 1995, I was re-elected Mayor of Ariel for a third term
with an unprecedented majority of over 85%. Moreover, my list for the
City Council won 8 of the 11 council seats. Clearly, I am gratified by
this overwhelming vote of confidence and I am very aware that it carries
with it a tremendous burden of responsibility, particularly in terms of
Ariel's future. In light of the current political climate, that future
sometimes seems uncertain and often, dangerous not only for the people
of Ariel but for all of Israel and all of the Jewish people.
We are in the midst of a serious crisis. The basic Jewish values
upon which the State of Israel was founded, the strong sense of national
identity that has always characterized the Israeli people seems to have
vanished. When an Israeli Deputy Minister can request that the words
"Nefesh Yehudi" be removed from Israel's national anthem, we see how
dangerous the situation has become. For without this "Nefesh Yehudi",
without the Jewish soul and spirit, there is no Jewish people, no Eretz
Yisrael, no Torah.
This atmosphere is a by-product of the agreement, signed between the
government of Israel and the PLO, an agreement that brought an army of
terrorists from Tunisia and Beirut to new bases in cities only a mile
from Kfar-Saba, 9 miles from Netanya and 15 miles from
Aware that his political future is tied to that of Arafat, Prime
Minister Rabin is prepared to go to any lengths to keep the PLO leader
strong. He is willing to give away the assets of the Jewish people and
receive nothing in return. For the only things this agreement has
brought us are death and bloodshed.
The brave families of Judea, Samaria, Gaza and the Golan Heights are
the only "impediments" to Rabin's plan and so he has singled them out
for the fiercest abuse. He has established policies that harm our
children's education, that deny benefits to immigrants and elderly in
the region, that negatively affect the income of thousands of young
families. His hope is that, under this non-stop pressure, people will
give up and leave their homes. If that does not work, he will use the
IDF to "transfer"
Every government is entitled to set its own policies and establish
its own priorities. That is the democratic way. But the prime directive
of a democratic government must be to protect and defend its citizens
and provide them with their basic needs. A government that neglects its
citizens' needs and endangers their security has betrayed the people's
trust and must face the consequences.
Yes, the government has the right to set its policies, but it does
not have the right to single out one sector of its citizens for
discrimination, based solely on geographics. A Prime Minister that
reveals in every interview in the written or broadcast media his barely-controlled hatred for
140,000 men, women and children who have fulfilled
their Zionist ideology by settling in Judea and Samaria, that incites
against them consistently, is no longer the leader of all of the people.
At the same time that the government holds back budgets for Jewish
communities in Judea & Samaria, Rabin and Peres jetset around the world
trying to raise funds for Arafat. While their agents prohibit the Jewish
Agency from providing assistance for the Jews in Eretz Yisrael, they
devote their efforts to strengthening the terrorist haven in Gaza. Our
Arab neighbors look on and laugh. They themselves, of course do not
contribute funds to support their PLO brothers. They do not need to.
After all, American taxpayers are doing it for them.
This is Rabin's solution to the 100 year Arab-Israeli conflict, his
great accomplishment. Every Prime Minister since the founding of the
State of Israel has sought avenues to peace, but peace with security.
Any Prime Minister could have chosen to give half the country away in
the hope that the problem would go away. For this, our Prime Minister
received the Nobel Peace Prize. But this is no solution. This is an
ostrich approach a hope that if you push the problem out of your sight,
it will disappear. All Rabin has really accomplished is endangering
Israel's security and not only for the present-day Israeli population
but for generations to come.
We, in Ariel, have created a strong political fact -- almost 15,000
people, thousands of children, 6 schools, the College of Judea & Samaria
with over 4000 students, an industrial area with 110 plants and
factories producing 500 million dollars worth of goods -- all evidence
that this is no temporary settlement. Ariel is a permanent and strong,
dynamic young city and our strength radiates outwards to tens of other
communities in the area. Only as long as these communities remain strong
will we be able to prevent katyushas from hitting Tel Aviv, to keep
Israel's capital, Jerusalem, undivided, to protect Israel's
We are doing our part but we need your help in our struggle to
ensure Israel's future. Stand with us now -- politically, morally,
financially -- so that the government's discriminatory policies will not
destroy the communities that are keeping Israel strong.
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