Rabbi plans for autonomous Jewish state

Says that new state will be established in Judea and Samaria if government withdraws from territories.

outpost evacuation 224.8 (photo credit: AP)
outpost evacuation 224.8
(photo credit: AP)
The time has come to prepare to secede from the State of Israel and to present initial steps for the creation of an autonomous state in Judea and Samaria, should the government move forward with plans to withdraw from those areas, Rabbi Shalom Dov Wolpe told The Jerusalem Post on Thursday. "If the government withdraws from Judea and Samaria, then we will start a new state," said Wolpe. He plans to publish his views in an article that will appear this Shabbat in a weekly pamphlet called Our Land of Israel that is distributed to synagogues. Wolpe is the founder of Ha'Matteh L'Hatzolat Ha'Am V'Ha'Aretz - SOS Israel, a grassroots umbrella organization of right-wing groups who believe that Judea and Samaria belong to Jews and should remain in Jewish hands. SOS has joined Wolpe in this initiative and, as an initial step, SOS has organized a contest to choose a flag and a national anthem for the autonomous state. Following the 2005 withdrawal from Gaza and four communities in Samaria, Wolpe concluded that it would be best to organize early, and to take more dramatic steps. "Why should we wait until soldiers come to people's homes," said Wolpe. He shied away from answering concrete questions as to how such a state would be organized or how it would defend itself. In a separate campaign, he and the head of the Rabbinical Council of Jewish Communities of Judea, Samaria and the Gaza Strip, Rabbi Dov Lior, embarked this week on a effort to encourage newly drafted soldiers to place a letter in their files upon entering the army in which they state that they would not participate in activities relating to the evacuation of Jews from their homes. Wolpe said that soldiers who agree to take this step are not disobeying orders, but rather showing their faith and their commitment to the people of Israel. It is forbidden to give the Land of Israel away to non-Jews, Wolpe said. Such actions also endanger lives, he added.