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“When we take a Stand, the World Follows”

Photography: Gershon Elinson. Women in Green

Rav Efrati and Caroline Glick were among those who spoke at the launching of the fundraising event for the Sovereignty Campaign. Included were insights from Trump’s speech.

The fundraising event for the Sovereignty Campaign is gaining momentum. Dozens of activists and supporters from throughout Israel volunteered to telephone potential donors for the initiative that will span 48 hours, and the amount that is raised will be doubled by donors who are supporters of the settlement enterprise and sovereignty.
 
In the words of welcome spoken by Rav Baruch Efrati, head of the Derech Emuna rabbis, at the launching of the event, he emphasized the contribution of righteous women to the redemption of Israel from Egypt and during these times, it is Women in Green, led by Yehudit Katsover and Nadia Matar, who are leading the implementation of the commandment to inherit the Land with the vision of sovereignty.
 
“We are here not only because we have an emotional connection to the Land of Israel and love her. This is all true, but the real reason is the commandment in the Torah to ‘settle the Land and inherit it’. Rashi says that if we apply sovereignty we will also be able to live in the Land, and if we do not apply sovereignty, if we behave as guests here, we will not be able to live here. Living in the Land of Israel requires sovereignty”, said Rav Efrati, noting that this is not something that individuals can carry out, but the government,  as the representative of the People, is the one that must apply sovereignty. “We have a state after two thousand years of exile, and the state can apply sovereignty in the areas of Judea and Samaria”.
 
“One of the negative ways that Moshe Rabeinu described us is as ‘a stubborn and devious generation’, a generation that does not listen to the Almighty. Our rabbis said that the Almighty wishes for us that the curses will become blessings. If so, if the curse is that we are stubborn, how can we use this attribute of stubbornness for good?”, asked Rav Efrati, and answered: “We were stubborn about Jerusalem being the capital of Israel; they told us that it would not happen and that the U.S. ignores it and Europe does not agree to it, but we were persistent, we know how to be persistent about the truth and it turned out that the world follows. Suddenly the head of the largest superpower in the world says that Jerusalem is the capital of Israel”.
 
According to him, if we will continue this pertinacity, and the People of Israel demonstrates this regarding the entire Land of Israel, and if it behaves as the sovereign over its Land, then the other countries will internalize it and behave accordingly. He continued, cautioning that the question remains whether the People of Israel will accept sovereignty over its Land willingly or perhaps be forced by the Almighty to accept the gift of sovereignty even against its will.
 
Rav Efrati noted that the benefits of sovereignty are many; there are economic benefits, security benefits and many other benefits, and perhaps “the main reason is that it is simply the most normal thing to do. How is it possible that we have not applied sovereignty over the Land of Israel?” he asked. “A person does not love his children because at the end of his days they will take care of him, even if this is correct. He loves them because they belong to him”.
 
Regarding the difficulties in implementing the vision of sovereignty, the rav said that indeed, there will be those who will caution us about difficulties and threats, but this is precisely what was heard before the declaration of the state; then too, they warned us about various kinds of threats. It was so regarding the Six Day War as well. There were those who claimed that the rate of the IDF’s progress was too fast, “but the Almighty had his own plan. We had nothing to fear. We are great and this Land naturally belongs to us and when we understand this, there will not be any threats from the nations at all”.
 
Another speaker at the event for the launching of the fundraiser was journalist and commentator Caroline Glick, author of the book The Israeli Solution: A One-State Plan for Peace in the Middle East, which was highly regarded and in which she broke down the vision of sovereignty into various parts and aspects.
 
Glick dedicated the main focus of her speech on analyzing the importance U.S. President Donald Trump’s speech, and the main message that can be learned for the promotion of sovereignty from Trump’s step of recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.
 
“The great significance of what Trump did is in connecting the American policy to the grounded reality. He took down the first brick in the wall of lies on which U.S. policy was based for the past seventy years”, said Glick, stating that beyond the declaration itself, “there is great depth in what he did. In recognizing this, he is also recognizing the fact that we are the people with the greatest connection to the Land of Israel and that it is our land. In this way, he refuted the Arabs’ and the Left’s false idea that was expressed during Obama’s term, according to which, the birth of Israel was a result of the Holocaust and not by the right of our forefathers; that Israel is imperialistic and does not exist as the return of a people to the land of its forefathers. We are not the UN’s refugee camp for Holocaust survivors. We have established a state here because this is our Land. The significance of this is immense. We view the recent years as attempts of various elements to define Zionism as something that was born after the Holocaust; that the reason for our being here is Auschwitz, and with a wave of his hand he threw these ideas into the garbage and said that it is clear that Jerusalem is the capital of the Jewish People”.
 
During her speech, Glick detailed the significant ramifications of this announcement for Israeli diplomacy, but beyond this, she focused on the way Trump made his declaration, a practice that can also be used in promoting the vision of sovereignty. The approach that Trump took did not include the negation of diplomatic plans, but emphasized the principle that is accepted as a practical consensus, which is that Jerusalem is the capital of Israel. Glick disregarded later condemnations of the declaration and mentioned the weak tone with which they were expressed and that the Bahraini delegation arrived in Israel on the day that Trump made his announcement; she also mentioned the renewed Egyptian discourse on the idea of expanding the Gaza Strip in the direction of El Arish - in effect, the creation of a Palestinian state there.
 
All of this, Glick believes, proves the consensus that in actuality recognizes Jerusalem as the capital. Likewise, Glick also believes that the promoters of sovereignty should act within channels of consensus and establish irreversible facts on the ground in the area of sovereignty. Among other things, she mentions that it would be desirable to dismantle the Civil Administration, which can be accomplished as an elementary requirement for equal rights facing the justice system and the logic of demanding the Ministry of the Interior to be responsible for building and housing of citizens and not to leave such decisions in the hands of the military administration.
 
According to Glick, the vision of sovereignty should be advanced in accordance with the People’s ability; step after step, determining irreversible facts on the ground. “Things seem impossible until they become inevitable. Control of Judea and Samaria is becoming inevitable and we must deepen and strengthen it, while ensuring that each step is done in accordance with the overall conceptual fabric, determining irreversible steps”.

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11-12-2017

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