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David Bedein: De facto Annexation in Israel: Because of Reality on the Ground. Not because one side of the Political Spectrum Won Their Case.

by David Bedein, posted here April 23, 2020

Too often, discussions of annexation of territory to Israel are lost in an ideological dispute that will never be resolved. Such debates avoid discussion of reality on the ground where no dispute exists.


Take, for example, the town of Beit Jalla, located in Arab Suburban Bethlehem, facing Gilo, located in Jewish Southern Jerusalem. These two towns face each other, with a deep valley between them.


The derivative of the name of each town, Gilo and Beit Jalla, is sourced in the same name, in Hebrew & Arabic. They both mean “rejoicing… in Jerusalem".


Yet there was little rejoicing twenty years ago, when Palestine Liberation Organization snipers shot daily rounds from the heights of Beit Jalla into Gilo and on to the road to Gilo, posing a daily lethal threat to the lives of every Jew and Arab in Southern Jerusalem.


One day, shooting from Beit Jalla into Gilo ceased and desisted. No one asks how that occurred. Did the PLO have a change of heart? Hardly. 


Something else occurred. The Israel Defense Forces, without convening a press conference to announce their intentions, entered Beit Jalla, and drove the armed forces of the Palestine Liberation Organization from Beit Jalla. The IDF has patrolled Beit Jalla ever since. Quiet was restored. In other words, Israel annexed Beit Jalla. No one objected. As someone who accompanies journalists to the scene of the action, it is easy to discern a permanent presence of the IDF in Beit Jalla, which  protects Jerusalem from the PLO.


That is the process by which Israel annexes Judea and Samaria: To protect Israel from the guns and missiles of the PLO, because the PLO remains in an active state of war with Israel, as best expressed in PLO education. 


Full disclosure: In  1996, I met PLO leader Yasser Arafat and requested authorization to examine new Palestinian school books, which were then in the offing. Arafat gave his consent. "These will be texts of peace", said Arafat.


Peace activists throughout the world were excited. At last, a genuine Palestinian entity would publish its own school books. 


And when the new Palestinian school books were issued, Arafat was true to his word and welcomed our agency to purchase all PLO school books for review. 


On the very day of their publication, August 1, 1996, The Palestinian Minister of Education received me at his office in El Birah, near Ramallah, providing a letter of authorization from Arafat to allow our agency to examine all the new Palestinian school books.


Working with a team of journalists, fluent in Arabic on the Phd level, we have over a period of 20 years purchased and examined all 365 Palestinian school books and all 109 Palestinian teachers' manuals that are used in all PA, Hamas and UNRWA schools.  Maps in their texts claim all of Palestine. PLO schools drum into the heads of every Palestinian School child that their purpose in life is to conquer Palestine, all of Palestine, by force of arms. There is no PLO text book for peace. In that context, Israeli annexation will continue, to protect the people of Israel from an entity in a state of total war. 


So it will be with the Jordan Valley, where the presence of the PLO would threaten all of Israel. Take a look at this topographic map, which speaks for itself.

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