Migron rabbinical conference slams home demolitions

Senior religious-Zionist rabbis gathered in the settlement outpost of Migron; Rabbi Lior blames diplomatic crises on evacuation.

Tammy Guttman Migron demolition (photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem)
Tammy Guttman Migron demolition
(photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem)
A number of senior religious- Zionist rabbis gathered in the settlement outpost of Migron on Monday to denounce the destruction of three homes carried out two weeks ago in a joint army and police operation.
The rabbinical conference was organized by Derech Emunah, a grouping of religious- Zionist rabbis “supporting the settlement of the land of Israel.”
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“What has happened here is an incredible injustice,” said Rabbi Haim Druckman, head of the Bnei Akiva Youth Movement and rosh yeshiva of Ohr Etzion Yeshiva. “The government established this place, no land was taken from the Arabs here. Before Migron was built there was nothing here at all and even if that was not the case, compensation could be paid to anyone with a just case.
Why is the government rushing to destroy what has been built here, there is no reason for it.”
Rabbi Dov Lior, the chief rabbi of Hebron and Kiryat Arba and a senior figure in the religious- Zionist world, also spoke at the event along with Rabbi Zalman Baruch Melamed, head of the Beit El yeshiva.
“The land of Israel belongs to the people of Israel,” Lior said.
“There are villainous groups in this country who want to abandon parts of the land,” he continued, thanking God that the Palestinian leadership has refused to negotiate with the government.
“These destructions are temporary setbacks,” said Melamed. “In the end they will lead to an even greater building effort.”
Rabbi Druckman also addressed the “price-tag” phenomenon, calling it “extremely negative.”
“It brings only damage, it is not ethical and it is not Jewish,” he said.
These comments come in the wake of Rabbi Aharon Lichtenstein’s criticism of settler violence in a Shabbat pamphlet published in Alon Shvut this week.
Lior added that the recent diplomatic crises and events in Turkey and Egypt are directly related to the destruction of three homes in the illegal West Bank outpost of Migron.
He added, "We all saw how the destruction of buildings [in Migron] here caused the expulsion of diplomats in Turkey, and then in Egypt, and afterward in Jordan."
The Kiryat Arba chief rabbi slammed left-wing Israelis for seeking to give away "land belonging to Israel" to the Arabs, and said he "thanked God that the Holy One, Blessed be He, hardened the rears of the camel jockeys [Palestinians] and caused them to refuse to meet with government officials."
Lior continued his speech, criticizing what he called the "illusion of peace," which he said was an "opiate for the masses."
According to Lior, the Arabs - whom he called "wicked" and "savages" - are the "enemies of peace," and that peace is "against their nature."
Lior also said that that it was "beneficial" the the West had experienced "some terrorism," because it had allowed Israel to "deploy its tanks."
Druckman would not discuss the possibility of religious soldiers or policemen refusing orders if commanded to evacuate the settlement, saying only that political and legal action was necessary to prevent any further destruction in Migron and other settlements.
“We condemn the so-called ‘price-tag’ actions against the army, against mosques and against Arabs innocent of any crime,” said the influential head of the Har Etzion Yeshiva in Alon Shvut along with co- Rosh Yeshiva Yaakov Medan.
“These acts are completely forbidden from both an ethical and national point of view and endanger the general settlement movement.”
At the conclusion of the conference, Rabbi Yosef Artziel of the Derech Emunah organization read out a declaration criticizing the Supreme Court for “ordering the evacuation of the three homes without allowing the residents to prove that the land on which they were built is private land” and called on the Justice Minister to try anyone who circumvented the appropriate procedures of the state.