Friday, June 29, 2018

Day Tripping in Samaria and Talking With Settlers - by Sheri Oz

..."You do not get to judge whether or not I have a right to live in my land. I do not really care what you think about that and I am not going to try to persuade you of anything. But if you want to know what my experience is, I am happy to discuss this with you.

Sheri Oz..
Israel Diaries..
28 June '18..

What would you expect to see on a tour of Samaria? What do you expect settlers to be like?

A Very Little Bit of Background

Samaria is the ancient name of the region based upon the name of what was once a capital city of the northern Kingdom of Israel. The Hebrew name is The Shomron. After the Jordanian occupation of the region west of the Jordan River in 1948, it was subsumed under the name, The West Bank. Internationally, and sadly, in Israel as well, that is the name most often used for the region, while with time, more and more Israelis are calling it Judea and Samaria or Yehuda v-Shomron.

In the 1967 war, Israel won back control over Judea and Samaria (J&S), but ceded some of that control when it signed the Oslo Accords with the PLO, an agreement that lead to the creation of the Palestinian Authority. There is a war of sorts going on now concerning the future of these disputed territories, unquestionably recognized by most Jews as the heart of our Jewish Homeland (even if many say “so what!”). What is questioned by leftist Jews within Israel is whether or not it is wise to hold onto these lands as opposed to giving them up in a negotiated peace treaty with the Arabs who live there and allowing it to become another Arab-Muslim state. Leftists outside of Israel, Jewish or not, seem to see us as colonialists with no legitimate ties to the land as an indigenous nation.

Purpose of the Samaria Trip

Recently, I went on two organized trips to Samaria. One trip was with David Haivri (organized by the Ministry of Strategic Affairs and the Shomron Council) and the other with David Hermelin (organized by The Center for Public Diplomacy and Israeli Hasbara). Both trips had the same overall goal: to show people the reality on the ground in Samaria and let them reach their own conclusions.

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