[Dr. Aaron Lerner - IMRA:
Pop quiz from Israel Law 101:
Shimon builds an apartment complex on land in Ramat Gan.
It turns out that the land apartment complex is sitting on is owned by
Question: What do the courts in Israel rule?
A. Demolish the apartment complex.
B. The apartment complex is the property of Yosef since he own the law.
C. Shimon has to compensate Yosef for the property and Shimon retains
possession of the apartment complex.
And this has in fact happened.
So why is it that when the government lawyers get involved in a case they
think that the answer is "A" only because he property is owned by Yousef
instead of Yosef?
And why is is that the same courts that rule "C" for Yosef rule "A" for
Well it has nothing to do with the law and absolutely everything to do with
the political leanings of the government lawyers and the court judges.
Again. No one is claiming that Yousef should not be compensated - if in
fact there is some Yousef out there who legally owned the land (there are
some homes slated for demolition on property that no specific person or
persons has even been identified as the owner). But that is fair
compensation - not demolition of the homes.
Unfortunately, the government lawyers involved in this matter are apparently
unable to park their politics at the office entrance. That speaks volumes
about them. One could hope that they would be able to do their jobs despite
their personal feelings. But we live in an imperfect world and it would be
sheer folly to expect them to change anytime soon.
The ball is squarely in PM Netanyahu's court.
He knows what has to be done.
This is a problem that won't go away by itself.
Yes, the columnists at Yediot Ahronot, Maariv and Haaretz are going to blast
But they aren't the ones who put him in office.
And they won't be the ones who will keep him in office.]
PM to settlers: Don't build on private land
After ordering accelerated construction of 2,000 housing units in east
Jerusalem and West Bank, Netanyahu tells Likud faction building must be
conducted legally. Minister Steinitz: Razing immoral
Attila Somfalvi YNET Published: 11.07.11, 17:07 / Israel News
After announcing his intention to set up a team that would examine the
possibility of retroactively legalizing construction in some West Bank
outposts, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Monday, "The effort should
focus on bolstering the communities, not clashing with the law. It is
forbidden to build on anyone's private land."
Speaking to members of the Likud faction, Netanyahu said: "Last week I
ordered accelerated construction of 2,000 housing units – this is the best
way to strengthen the (settlement enterprise). We are acting, not talking. I
was pleased with the feedback I received. These territories will remain
under Israel's sovereignty in any agreement.
"We must build in accordance with the law, thus strengthening the Land of
Israel. There is no contradiction between the (settlement enterprise) and
upholding the law," Netanyahu added.
Education Minister Gideon Sa'ar said he objects to the destruction of
outposts in the West Bank because, according to him, there is "no proof of
ownership and because the structures were erected by the state in good
"The homes were built by the government, and destroying them would be the
wrong solution," he added.
Knesset members Miri Regev and Yariv Levin also criticized Netanyahu's
remarks, with Levin claiming that "judicial elements are dictating a
political viewpoint that is preventing the government from governing. There
is a simple solution to the problem, and the government must not destroy
Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz said during the meeting, "(The State) builds
homes, a Palestinian casts doubt (over their legality) and someone petitions
the High Court of Justice. It is enough that someone casts the slightest
doubt for the State to become defensive and seal the communities' fate."
Netanyahu responded by saying: "Why must I destroy these homes? Is it
required (from a legal standpoint)? I can offer compensation."
Steinitz continued to say that "we are making families miserable – not for a
peace agreement and not for justice. It is morally and legally wrong. As
someone who has researched the events at Amona – we will be subjecting
ourselves to unnecessary tension and division."
MK Tzipi Hotovely told the Likud faction meeting that "the attempts to
present the outposts issue as one that is related to upholding the law are
misleading. It is a political issue. For the majority (of Likud faction
members) razing outposts is a red line. Ten MKs said they would not vote
with the government unless the outposts issue is resolved."
"We must pass a law that would legalize all the lands (in the West Bank),"
Earlier Monday, a number of MKs and rabbis held a meeting during which they
agreed that political pressure must be applied to prevent the razing of
"You are the ones who will have to carry the burden," Rabbi Dov Lior told
Also on Monday, IDF soldiers and police officers were attacked while
clearing the ruins of three illegal structures which were razed at the Oz
Zion outpost. Twelve people were arrested, including seven teenagers, for
hurling stones, assaulting police officers, and violating a closed military
During last week's Likud faction meeting Minister Yuli Edelstein and a
number of other party members, including ministers Moshe Ya'alon, Gilad
Erdan and Limor Livnat, urged the government to refrain from evacuating and
razing Jewish-owned homes in the West Bank.
In accordance with its pledge to the High Court of Justice, the State is
expected to begin a series of razings and evacuations at a number of
outposts. Some 85 permanent housing units in Migron, Givat Assaf and
Beit-El's Ulpana neighborhood are slated for destruction.
Yair Altman contributed to the report