The Amona complex - Opinion - Haaretz Daily Newspaper | Israel News

The Amona complex

The illegal West Bank settlement outpost has become a symbol of the state’s march toward a messianic, anti-Zionist dream.

The Amona outpost.
An archive image of the Amona outpost. / Photo by Olivier Fitoussi
Haaretz Editorial
Published 04:43 16.10.13

In 1997, the first demolition order was issued against the West Bank settlement outpost of Amona. In 2003, another demolition order was issued. In 2006, the state deigned to raze a mere nine buildings. In 2008, the state admitted that construction on the site was illegal and announced that the entire outpost would be razed. In 2011, the state announced that the outpost would be evacuated by the end of 2012. By the end of 2012, nothing had happened.

Now, in mid-October 2013, 16 years after the first demolition order was issued, the state is asking the court for a postponement – yet again. Here’s the explanation this time: “In the government’s view, an evacuation on such a scale at a time like this is liable to harm Israel’s diplomatic interests ... When there are weighty considerations on one hand, and no concrete petitioner on the other ... the diplomatic considerations take precedence.”

It would be interesting to know what those “diplomatic considerations” on which the state based its position actually are. Is the fact that Israel is holding low-intensity talks with the Palestinians supposed to be a consideration for the court in discussing the evacuation of lawbreakers squatting on land that doesn’t belong to them? Is there a necessary connection between implementing the High Court of Justice’s repeated rulings and the diplomatic process, which, more than anything else, seems like a tactic aimed solely at reducing international pressure?

And in general, when “the state” requests another postponement, is it really the state that stands behind this request, or is it a group of politicians from the coalition’s right flank, who are exerting pressure on Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in order to benefit their voters from those same illegal outposts? Isn’t “the state” supposed to be a national entity for which the High Court’s rulings are a guiding light, rather than merely the collective face of Housing Minister Uri Ariel, Deputy Foreign Minister Zeev Elkin and Economy Minister Naftali Bennett?

Amona is not just an outpost built through deception on privately owned Palestinian land; it is a symbol of a state that mortgages the future of its citizens to a messianic, anti-Zionist dream dictated by an aggressive, violent gang that has taken over the political and institutional centers of power.

The fact that even the prosecution is collaborating with these lawbreakers, and that Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein is backing this illegal takeover of private land, ought to worry every Israeli who desires to live in a sane country.


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  • 7.
    Whether it's illegal is not really so black or white. In relation to international law, it is not illegal for israelis to reside in judea and samaria. Palestine is not a recognized country with defined borders. It may sound strange, but as long as people move into the area on their own accord - then it's quite legal to move in and build. What so many people and media are saying about the alledged illegality stems from a misunderstanding about what international law actually says.
  • 6.
    to wit: if it evacuates this illegal colony on foreign soil, it will show the world that all it's previous diplomatic efforts were lies (otherwise , of course israel could have evacuated it years ago) And israel certainly does NOT want be caught in its own lies
  • 5.
  • 4.
    That it has no future if it remains in the West Bank. It has no legitimate Sovereignty Rights there and it knows it is legally required to withdraw and the World Community will never in a million years let Israel keep it. ALL SETTLEMENTS NEED TO GO and Israeli's with them.
  • 3.
    Israel seems to be quite insane
  • 2.
    Amona has been a scandal from the beginning, and not just because of the illegality of its foundation. Nor even because of the right wing government. The real scandal is the complicity of Israels leading jurists, including the Supreme Court , in tolerating the abuses carried out by what Haaretz now calls 'gangs'. These 'gangs' are the institutions (including the military administration and the World Zionist Organisation) which have established settlements on stolen land, justifying their activities by a) inventing a separate legal system and b) exploiting Jewish sentiment worldwide to create an evil Siamese twin which is gradually poisoning a law abiding society. The only remedy is to separate the two bodies. Otherwise both will die.
  • 1.
    Are you trying to legitimize the word 'zionism' by tweaking its definition?