Weekly Commentary: Truth over Lies - Implement Supreme Court Ruling Against
Arab Trespassers in South Hebron Hills
Dr. Aaron Lerner 15 May 2022
First the facts:
#1. In 1980 the IDF designated an UNOCCUPIED area in the South Hebron Hills
as "Fire Zone 918" for the use of the IDF for training purposes.
#2. The fact that this area was UNOCCUPIED was documented with, among other
things, aerial photographs.
#3. The only "evidence" that this is not the case is a report prepared by
social anthropologist Prof. Shuli Hartman based on the CONVERSATIONS
Hartman had with the trespassers who, surprise surprise, claimed that they
had resided in Fire Zone 918 for many generations.
#4. Even if one were to accept the narrative that the Geneva Convention
applies to Judea and Samaria (that is to say, Israel "occupied" Judea and
Samaria in 1967 even though at the time there was a "sovereignty void" in
the area as no sovereign enjoyed international recognition of their having
sovereignty over this territory before Israel took control of it in 1967),
International law does NOT prohibit Israel from designating an UNOCCUPIED
area in Judea and Samaria as a "fire zone" for the IDF.
#5. The status of Fire Zone 918 was not legally challenged for close to 20
#6. When the status of Fire Zone 918 was ultimately challenged, in order to
prevent the evacuation of people who trespassed Fire Zone 918, the Supreme
Court issued a series of orders freezing the situation pending a final
decision of the Court.
#7. This series of freezes applied BOTH to the IDF and the trespassers.
#8. The trespassers violated the freeze and built many homes in Fire Zone
918 over the course of the DECADES of court deliberations.
#9. The Supreme Court ruled in a unanimous decision last week that the
trespassers can be evacuated from Fire Zone 918.
#10. The number of trespassers in Fire Zone 918 is now over a thousand.
This because the trespassers KNOWINGLY violated the freeze orders.
So these are the facts.
International law has absolutely nothing to do with the evacuation of the
trespassers from Fire Zone 918.
And the hardship which these trespassers may now face is SELF IMPOSED as
they knowingly violated the court imposed freeze over the years.
So now the question is if the Government of Israel will act on this very
important precedent setting ruling.
For those who want to kick the can down the road there will ALWAYS be an
excuse to postpone action for centuries to come.
On the other hand, this unanimous decision based on facts which anyone can
follow if they stop shouting and think for a few minutes, is an ideal case
for Israel to choose to stand its ground.
And its implementation, by a coalition government which includes radical
Left Meretz and Arab Raam, would send an important message to all concerned
that the sovereign State of Israel will pursue its legal national interests
regardless of the noise.
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