Creating awareness

The Regavim Movement aims to highlight the issues surrounding Arab land expansion and prevent it by educating the public about the threat it may represent.

Bezalel Smotrich 521 (photo credit: Courtesy/Regavim)
Bezalel Smotrich 521
(photo credit: Courtesy/Regavim)
Bezalel Smotrich Age: 31 Profession: Director of the Regavim movement Place of birth: Hispin, Golan Heights Current residence: Kedumim
■ What gets you out of bed in the morning? Four adorable children who start their day with the sun.
■ What keeps you up at night? A mind that doesn’t rest...
■ What’s the most difficult professional moment you’ve faced so far?    Those terrible days when the Jews of Gush Katif were expelled and their wonderful communities were destroyed. This was such a foolish move that was carried out so smoothly and shattered so many beliefs and human rights on the way. But like always, we try to come out stronger from hard times and to continue to build and struggle for our just cause. Those hard times played a decisive role in the decision to establish Regavim.
■ How do you celebrate your achievements? I usually celebrate my achievements for about five minutes, and then go on to the next challenge. In our field, there is so much darkness to drive away that we don’t have a lot of time to celebrate. On the other hand, I get a lot of satisfaction along the way, and that’s also a kind of celebration.
■ If you were prime minister, what’s the first thing you would do?I would return the legal system and the Supreme Court to their natural size in a democratic state. Judicial activism in Israel has already grown out of proportion and violated the balance between elected officials and the judicial branch. A mixture of judicial activism and post-Zionism that has taken over the legal discourse in Israel presents a real danger to the principle of a Jewish state.
■ Which Israeli should have a movie made about him/her? My grandmother, of blessed memory, a Holocaust survivor who, like many others, amazingly and inexplicably succeeded in looking ahead, making aliya, starting everything anew, establishing a new and wonderful family and taking part in building a Jewish state after 2,000 years of exile.
■ What would you change about Israelis if you could? Why change a thing?
■ iPad, BlackBerry or pen and paper? BlackBerry.
■ If you had to write an advertisement to entice tourists to come to Israel, what would it say? This is the country that wins a Nobel Prize almost every year, the country that is almost added every year to the list of the wonders of the world, the country that wins the European Championship or at least reaches the finals almost every year, and the country that is the only home for Jews – always.
■ What is the most serious problem facing the country? The territorial continuity that the Arabs are creating from the north, through Judea and Samaria to the Negev, Gaza and Egypt in the south. The general picture of Arab expansion presents a very real existential threat. The biggest problem is the lack of awareness of this danger in Israeli society and its leadership. For a long time, the problem hasn’t been settlements or territories liberated by Israel in 1967 – the problem has become an existential problem everywhere in Israel.
■ How can it be solved? The State of Israel must return to the path of Zionism and settling the land, encourage Jewish settlement in the periphery – the Negev and the Galilee – strengthen the Jewish character of the state and go back to believing that we are right. We must remember, especially in light of recent weeks, that we are the only democracy and the only sane country in the Middle East.
■ In 20 years, the country will be: A light to the nations, each man under his grapevine and fig tree, united around the Kingdom of David and the Holy Temple. And if that doesn’t happen by then, we will continue to strive for that – since we are not frightened of a long road ahead.