The Knesset has approved legislation in preliminary reading that prohibits illegal migrants from transferring funds abroad. This initiative has now been endorsed by the Ministerial Committee on Legislation, assuring it of a comfortable majority in the second and third (final) Knesset plenum votes.

Interior Minister Gideon Sa’ar explains that the bill is designed to create a disincentive for illegal migration – as regards both coming here and staying. Many earn sums in Israel that are vast in Third World terms and they send off portions of their income to families back home. This could now become thorny – except in cases of “extreme humanitarian distress,” whereby first-degree relatives are in verifiable existential peril.

All other financial transfers would soon be criminalized.

Money could be exported only when the migrant leaves Israel and even then a ceiling will be placed on the amount to prevent departing infiltrators from smuggling out money for associates who remain in the country. The maximum sum allowed would be Israel’s minimum wage (currently NIS 4,300) multiplied by the number of months spent here.

It may well be that alternative subterranean money trails would appear. Resorting to these would, however, hardly be as easy as with the current lax set-up.

These restrictions might appear harsh but are essentially unavoidable. It is perhaps a kinder approach than rounding up illegals and deporting them. Dispelling delusions about continued illegal residency here is certain to ultimately work for the migrants’ own benefit.

Whether or not we feel sympathy for the untold thousands of illegal migrants who infiltrate Israel, it cannot be denied that this influx has created festering problems that are liable to swell further. Even in the unlikely event that all entry points into this country would be hermetically sealed, infiltrators already here will continue to dominate entire urban swaths and live effectively outside society and under the radar of the system.

Individually, each story of plight and privation tugs at Israeli heartstrings. Collectively this constitutes a burden that our cash-strapped and embattled state may not be able to shoulder.

Israel has indisputably become an enticing destination.

Illegals – mostly Muslim – from Eritrea, Sudan, Ethiopia, Ghana, Nigeria, Chad, the Ivory Coast and elsewhere perceive Israel as the sub-Sahara’s veritable latter-day Promised Land. For more than a decade, the exodus out of Africa has been re-directed to a new exit spout pouring into Israel.

Contrary to assertions by human rights advocates, the overwhelming majority of the infiltrators are not refugees but economic migrants hankering for the good life of the First World, creating an exponentially magnifying demographic dangers to the Jewish state.

In addition, our Western liberality beckons human-traffickers and drug-smugglers, to say nothing of people who constitute a security risk. Illegal migrants congregate in central Tel Aviv, Arad and Eilat, where once-familiar cityscapes have been unrecognizably transformed.

Eilat’s mayor warned that his city is “losing its identity.

Thousands of Africans inundate us. Every fifth Eilati is now an illegal African... Eilat is only the sign of things to come.

These illegals constitute the single greatest threat to Israel’s future as a Jewish state.”

Tel Aviv’s entire Neveh Sha’anan Quarter, once energized by yesteryear’s central bus terminal, has become an expanding ex-territorial lawless slum where few Israelis dare to tread. It is the city’s worst crime hotbed, not in the least comparable to anything elsewhere in the metropolitan area. Numerous robberies and violent rapes are routinely reported there but more doubtless go unreported.

The few Israelis left there live in fear. In 2010, 68-year old Esther Galili was brutally beaten to death by an Eritrean illegal, Ya’acub Bashir al-Fadel, on Hagra Street – around the corner from what had been her home for decades. Galili was the last Israeli on her street. All others fled in panic.

MK Elazar Stern (Hatnua) was attacked by an Eritrean migrant when he toured Neveh Sha’anan this past Sunday.

He was beaten on the head and his kippa was snatched and stepped upon demonstratively.

“We have abandoned Israel’s own citizens,” Stern summed up. “We retreated from occupied territory in the heart of Tel Aviv – a battlefield where we had deserted our wounded.”

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