Settler Leaders 311.
(photo credit: TOVAH LAZAROFF)
“Yes, you can say no,” to the US, settlers told Prime Minister Binyamin
Netanyahu Monday, as they set up a large white protest tent outside his
They hung a poster with the slogan, which makes a play
on the famous “Yes we can,” phrase made popular by US President Barack Obama
during his election campaign, inside and outside the tent.
Here, with the
help of generators, they spent the day on laptops and cell phones lobbying
against plans by Netanyahu to impose a US initiated 90-day settlement
Binyamin Regional Council head Avi Ro’eh, who worked there
instead of his office said, “We have an obligation to fight for the basic rights
of our residents.”
Although settlers feel that the possibility of a
freeze wanes with each day that passes without written US pledges in exchange
for a freeze, they are leaving nothing to chance.
When news that a
moratorium was possible broke on November 13, settlers feared that it was
“Ten days later, it seems quite different. We are aware that it
is an uphill battle and it will not be easy to win. But we have reason to be
cautiously optimistic,” said Dani Dayan, who heads the Council of Jewish
Communities of Judea, Samaria and the Gaza Strip.
perception is that the US package of incentives for the freeze is not as it was
first described and is as full of holes as Swiss cheese, he said.
was careful to note that the settlers are not attacking Netanyahu, rather they
are calling on him to return to his ideological roots.
“He is flirting
with ideas that he himself does not believe and has never believed in,” Dayan
“We call on him to return to his roots” and to stay true to past
promises he made to the Israeli public to support Judea and Samaria, said
Meanwhile, a group which calls itself Mateh Ha’aretz posted a
video on YouTube (http://www.youtube.com/w atch?v=Pa7v0gn5vkY) which showed how
Netanyahu has flip-flopped in the last year with regard to a Palestinian state
and West Bank Jewish construction.
“What has happened to Bibi?” it asked,
before presenting allegedly conflicting statements and decisions the prime
minister had made in the press.