Tuesday morning, the Knesset voted to repeal Ariel Sharon’s 2005 Disengagement as it applies to the 4 evacuated settlements in northern Samaria. The vote represents a major victory for Israel’s right-wing, which has long viewed the Disengagement as one of the most disastrous policies in Israeli history.
While the vote on Tuesday only applies to the 4 north Samarian settlements, many advocates are hopeful that it signals a possible reversal of the policy also as it applies to Gush Katif.
(For background, the Disengagement, part of a 2005 peace process brokered by US President George W. Bush, evacuated and demolished 25 Jewish settlements, mainly in Gush Katif in southern Gaza, but also in northern Samaria. The policy, which displaced hundreds of Israeli families and met huge blowback from the Israeli public, ultimately backfired when terrorist organization Hamas took control of the Gaza strip.)
Although viewed by many as a positive move, the Knesset’s vote on Tuesday comes just a day before the beginning of Ramadan, the Muslim month of fasting. During Ramadan, tensions generally rise between Palestinians and the IDF; this move by the government could provoke Palestinian retaliation.
Firstly, let us offer praise for this move to retake Israel’s heartland! Please pray for God’s peace over the area, especially during Ramadan. Lastly, please pray for wisdom for, and protection over, Israel’s security forces and Jewish settlers in the area.
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