Reclaiming Samaria and Judea


Samaria and Judea

© David Burton 2020

Samaria and Judea

     Over a half century ago, the Six-Day War broke out. Israel defeated the Arab hordes that had gathered to attack and destroy the State of Israel and to drive out or kill all the Jews residing in this insignificant piece of land, no bigger than the state of New Jersey. The Arabs lost and Israel won that war. For the past fifty years, Israel has repeatedly tried to, once-and-for-all, end the ongoing conflict with its Arab neighbors and to give the Palestinian-Arabs the choice of living within the State of Israel as citizens with the same rights as Israeli-Jews, or to live in a state of their own which would be at peace with Israel.
     All Israeli efforts to achieve a fair and equitable peace with the Palestinian-Arabs residing in Judea, Samaria and Gaza have been in vain, but not for a lack of trying. The Palestinian-Arab peoples have allowed themselves to become the victims of Islamic terrorist leaders who want nothing except the elimination of Israel and the death of the Jews living there. Those Islamic tyrants are more than willing to shed the last drop of blood of the Palestinian-Arabs over whom they rule with an iron fist.

     Here in 2020, the fruitless efforts by Israel and all reasonable people around the world to achieve a peaceful and mutually beneficial solution to a problem that has been festering for more than 50 years are coming to a conclusion. Israel will do what is necessary to guarantee the safety of its citizens - and those terrorists working to destroy Israel and its people be damned! Enough is enough!

     Looking back to 1967, where this all began, let’s get some facts out on the table. As is usually the case in the Middle East, most facts to the extremists living there are irrelevant and can be distorted any which way to support the lies and fallacies which they peddle to the ignorant, uninitiated, the willing dupes and the ever-present anti-Semites. Truth has no relevance to these Islamic terrorists and murderers. All lies are good if they support the goals of these fanatics.

     Please take note that, in this article, quoted bold-face text represents my own emphasis and not that of the sources quoted, DB.

     In June of 1967, the Six-Day War broke out.

     “While some wars fade into obscurity, this one remains as relevant today as in 1967. Many of its core issues remain unresolved and in the news.
       - - -
     “First, in June 1967, there was no state of Palestine. It didn't exist and never had. Its creation, proposed by the UN in 1947, was rejected by the Arab world because it also meant the establishment of a Jewish state alongside.
     “Second, the West Bank and eastern Jerusalem were in Jordanian hands. Violating solemn agreements, Jordan denied Jews access to their holiest places in eastern Jerusalem. To make matters still worse, they desecrated and destroyed many of those sites.
     “Meanwhile, the Gaza Strip was under Egyptian control, with harsh military rule imposed on local residents.
     “And the Golan Heights, which were regularly used to shell Israeli communities far below, belonged to Syria.
     “Third, the Arab world could have created a Palestinian state in the West Bank, eastern Jerusalem, and the Gaza Strip any day of the week. They didn't. There wasn't even discussion about it. And Arab leaders, who today profess such attachment to eastern Jerusalem, rarely, if ever, visited. It was viewed as an Arab backwater.
     “Fourth, the 1967 boundary at the time of the war, so much in the news these days, was nothing more than an armistice line dating back to 1949 -- familiarly known as the Green Line. That's after five Arab armies attacked Israel in 1948 with the aim of destroying the embryonic Jewish state. They failed. Armistice lines were drawn, but they weren't formal borders. They couldn't be. The Arab world, even in defeat, refused to recognize Israel's very right to exist.
     “Fifth, the PLO, which supported the war effort, was established in 1964, three years before the conflict erupted. That's important because it was created with the goal of obliterating Israel. Remember that in 1964 the only 'settlements' were Israel itself.
     “Sixth, in the weeks leading up to the Six-Day War, Egyptian and Syrian leaders repeatedly declared that war was coming and their objective was to wipe Israel off the map. There was no ambiguity. Twenty-two years after the Holocaust, another enemy spoke about the extermination of Jews. The record is well-documented.
     “The record is equally well-documented that Israel, in the days leading up to the war, passed word to Jordan, via the UN and United States, urging Amman to stay out of any pending conflict. Jordan's King Hussein ignored the Israeli plea and tied his fate to Egypt and Syria. His forces were defeated by Israel, and he lost control of the West Bank and eastern Jerusalem. He later acknowledged that he had made a terrible error in entering the war.
     “Seventh, Egypt's President Gamal Abdel Nasser demanded that UN peacekeeping forces in the area, in place for the previous decade to prevent conflict, be removed. Shamefully, without even the courtesy of consulting Israel, the UN complied. That left no buffer between Arab armies being mobilized and deployed and Israeli forces in a country one-fiftieth the size of Egypt -- and just nine miles wide at its narrowest point.
     “Eighth, Egypt blocked Israeli shipping lanes in the Red Sea, Israel's only maritime access to trading routes with Asia and Africa. This step was understandably regarded as an act of war by Jerusalem. The United States spoke about joining with other countries to break the blockade, but, in the end, did not act.
     “Ninth, France, which had been Israel's principal arms supplier, announced a ban on the sale of weapons on the eve of the June war. That left Israel in potentially grave danger if a war were to drag on and require the resupply of arms. It was not until the next year that the U.S. stepped into the breach and sold vital weapons systems to Israel.
     “And finally, after winning the war of self-defense, Israel hoped that its newly-acquired territories, seized from Egypt, Jordan, and Syria, would be the basis for a land-for-peace accord. Feelers were sent out. The formal response came on September 1, 1967, when the Arab Summit Conference famously declared in Khartoum: ‘No peace, no recognition, no negotiations’ with Israel.
     “Today, there are those who wish to rewrite history.
     “They want the world to believe there was once a Palestinian state. There was not.
     “They want the world to believe there were fixed borders between that state and Israel. There was only an armistice line between Israel and the Jordanian-controlled West Bank and eastern Jerusalem.
      - - -
     “They want the world to believe post-1967 Israeli settlement-building is the key obstacle to Arab-Israeli peacemaking. The Six-Day War is proof positive that the core issue is, and always has been, whether the Arab world accepts the Jewish people's right to a state of their own. If so, all other contentious issues, however difficult, have possible solutions. ” (Ref. 1)

     Israel’s long-time foes, the habitual critics of Israeli policies, dubious self-described Israel supporters and even some longtime friends have come out against Israel “annexing” parts of Judea and Samaria.

     “Here are their arguments: The Palestinian Authority will collapse; Israel will effectively kill the two-state solution and eventually become a minority within its own binational state; the peace treaty with Jordan will be rescinded; normalization with Arab Gulf states will halt; European nations will apply sanctions on Israel; Democrats will distance themselves even further {from the Jewish State}; and {Republicans} will be angered.
      - - -
     “. . . what is clear is that . . . critics of the {‘annexation’} are hyper-concerned with the optics of an Israeli administrative move, despite the simple fact that Israel’s action {will} not change any facts on the ground.
     “Many of today’s critics specifically call Israel’s upcoming move an ‘annexation’ because the politically charged term falsely implies that Israel will be marching across a line and taking over property it has no rights to and does not currently control.
     “Yet what Israel is {doing} is alter its own governing structure and formally apply Israeli law to the 400,000 Jewish citizens who already live in the strategic lands the Jewish state has controlled for decades.
     “The land in question represents approximately half of the territory delegated to Israeli control by the now infamous Oslo Accords. This territory is legally referred to as ‘Area C.’
     “ ‘Area A’ and ‘Area B’ are under Palestinian administrative control. Neither Israel nor the international community interferes in how Palestinians govern or don’t govern those territories. At present, not a single Jew resides in these areas.
     “Jews living in ‘Area C’ are full, tax-paying Israeli citizens. The Israeli government administers these territories and maintains the daily life of its Jewish residents. Such basic services include providing for physical safety, funding infrastructure, paving streets, supplying electricity and water, collecting garbage and so on.
     “With the move, Israel would demilitarize its administration of key settlement blocs by simply removing the authority of an Israel Defense Forces’-controlled ‘Civil Administration’ originally set up to govern settlements.
     “The move signifies that Israel is confident of its ability to defend residents in settlements just as it defends the lives of all other Israelis. More importantly, the move jettisons layers of bureaucratic discrimination affecting Jewish settlers who are governed differently from their friends and family members living barely 10 to 20 minutes away.
     “For example, instead of needing the approval of the Defense Ministry to build a new apartment complex in Judea, approval would now be required by Israel’s Housing Ministry, which regulates such measures across the rest of the otherwise-small Jewish state.
     “Just as nobody tells the Palestinian Authority how to govern the territories it administers, Israel’s decision over how to govern ‘Area C’ should be of little concern to anyone who doesn’t live there.
     “For all the criticism . . . hurled at Israel’s unity government, the Jewish state is not . . . {marching} across a line or border or to claim even an inch of new territory. It’s not . . . {advancing} a single tank or soldier, or {placing} its flag anywhere that it has not already been proudly hanging for decades.
     “As such, the move poses no threat to the sustainability of the Palestinian Authority or to Israel’s critical relations with Jordan.
     “On the contrary, Israel’s footprint in Judea and Samaria is actually {frozen} within specific geographic parameters approximately half the size of the territory it currently and legally controls in order to protect the remote prospects for a future Palestinian state.
     “In exchange for American recognition and to give the administration’s . . . ‘Peace for Prosperity’ plan a chance to succeed, Israel {has undertaken} an unprecedented four-year freeze of building in much of the key areas it already controls.
      - - -
     “Perhaps instead of criticizing Israel for its legal maintenance of the territories it controls, critics should press on the Palestinian Authority to start behaving like a peaceful actor.
     “And while opponents of Israel’s administrative move suggest that it further harms prospects for the creation of a Palestinian state, the building freeze actually protects those prospects — even as Palestinians continuously violate their obligations under the Oslo Accords and have failed to lay even the most basic foundations for a lasting peace, let alone responsible statehood.
      - - -
     “After years of absorbing and countering Palestinian terror, opponents {of the ‘Peace for Prosperity’ plan and 4-year building freeze} argue that the last thing Israel needs to do . . . is give Palestinians yet another opportunity for statehood when they have done nothing to earn it.
     “Yet a Palestinian state is in no way an automatic outcome of the four-year building freeze. A 10-month settlement building freeze demanded by former President Barack Obama in 2009 did nothing to further advance the cause of peace — not to mention that Israel received absolutely nothing in return for its gesture.” (Ref. 2)

     As would be expected, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas has threatened all sorts of calamities upon Israel, the United States and everyone else who supports Israel’s action in formally reclaiming those areas of Judea and Samaria over which it has been in administrative control for more than 5-decades.

     Back in May of 2020, “Statements by Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas (who oversees a massive kleptocratic terrorist regime that endorses a massive Pay-for-Slay program that provides Palestinian suicide bombers, terrorist murderers, and their families with lifelong financial security), sounded more like conceptual inanities than they do reasoned disagreements by a serious politician.
     “Abbas said . . . that he was terminating all agreements with Israel and the United States as a result of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s plan to extend Israeli law to parts of Judea and Samaria under the stewardship of the Trump peace plan. Well, no one really cares if he terminates any agreement with the United States. The PA is irrelevant to the United States except as a disgraceful moral stain on our foreign policy record for having financed a terrorist rogue political institution for decades. What would be truly humorous, were it not backed with the routine rampant anti-Semitism and support of the European Union, is his statement {that}: Israel has ‘annulled’ the Oslo Accord with its intention to apply Israeli law in occupied Palestine.
     “No Abbas, the Palestinian National Authority and other militant groups acting under its aegis long ago nullified the Oslo Accord with the Second Intifada when it sought to repay Israel’s generous peace-and-land offerings by repeated bloody attacks against the state of Israel and her people from September 2000 until February 2005.
     “But let us retreat for a moment. The Oslo Accord was always a sham agreement made to cripple Israel . . . {The} Oslo Accord was never legitimate because it was nullified on origination by the charters of the PLO/PA. Once {enacted, such} charters remain in existence {until they are formally rescinded} . . . , {They} are, indeed, permanent declarations of war against Israel. All Palestinian charters, including the one created by Hamas, call for the obliteration of the state of Israel and the removal of Jewry from the region.
     “Along with the indoctrination school curriculum promulgating hatred and debasement against Jews and Israel by the PLO/PA, the charters support all Palestinian political parties that engage in a state of war against Israel. The Second Intifada, orchestrated by then PLO leader Yasser Arafat, completely neutralized the Oslo Accords. . . {Any} action Israel takes against the PA and those who vote it into power . . . are moral responses to a declaration of permanent war by sworn enemies of the state. There can be no peace once those charters exist.
      - - -
     “All charters of any existing governing Palestinian bodies function in such a way that they place both the Palestinian people and Palestinian political actors in a permanent state of war against Israel. It is tragic that there are unwitting, decent individual Palestinians who get caught in this crossfire.
     “. . . Annexation as it applies to Judea and Samaria is simply a preposterous term. Israel cannot annex land that is indigenously the land of the Jews that was repeatedly stolen from them over millennia. It properly re-captured those lands in 1967 . . .
     “{With this ‘annexation’, Israel} recovers territory that is historically the property of the State of Israel . . . Some regimes can be politically rehabilitated, ethically placed in trusteeship, and then released back into the global commons. The PLO and then the PA have always been politically rogue institutions. The PA today betrays civilizational maturity by engaging in thuggery and terrorism that engender—among other things—national destabilization.
     “Rogue institutions such as the PA posing as a representative of a legitimate state or claiming the right to initiate statehood, pose threats to those who fall within their geographical gambits. They defile the individual rights of their citizen and residents in a way that undermines their legal personalities and moral integrity. The PA as a rogue governing body consciously removes the possibility of a lasting peace by subjugating human beings in the regional, local or global community to continuous fear by: a) exposing them directly to the threat of war; b) compromising or destroying those institutions that are devoted to maintaining a peaceful regional, state, and world order; and c) inflicting deliberate political, economic and general oppression against its own people. Rogue political governing bodies are not just inimical to the moral order of an existing ethical state—in this case Israel—they are political ballasts.
     “The morality of annexation of Judea and Samaria lies in its ability . . . to dissolve, over time, the PA; {and,} to show that . . . its systemic violence and reigns of terror disqualified it from any right of sovereignty. Once a rogue political body is divested of its sovereign status then it can have no political or legal standing in the international community . . . Should the PA seek violent reprisals against Israel’s moral right to reclaim its historic holy lands, then Israel has the right to disband the PA . . .. The process could be long; it could take generations . . .” (Ref. 3)

     Opponents of Israel’s “annexation" of parts of Judea and Samaria conspicuously ignore - or knowingly disregard – “international law, with its unequivocal legitimization of Jewish sovereignty west of the Jordan River. It began with the Balfour Declaration (1917), declaring: ‘His Majesty’s Government view with favour the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people, … it being clearly understood that nothing shall be done which may prejudice the civil and religious rights of existing non-Jewish communities in Palestine. …’ National rights for these communities were pointedly omitted.
     “Five years later, the League of Nations Mandate for Palestine unambiguously acknowledged that the Balfour Declaration recognized ‘the historical connection of the Jewish people with Palestine and … the grounds for reconstituting their national home in that country.’ The Mandate guaranteed ‘close settlement by Jews’ on the land east and west of the Jordan River. But Colonial Secretary Winston Churchill removed the land east of the river to become the Kingdom of Jordan, ruled by Emir Abdullah. There was no mention of ‘Palestinians,’ Arabs who had yet to emerge with a distinctive national identity.
     “In 1948, amid Arab efforts to annihilate the fledging Jewish state, biblical Judea and Samaria came under Jordanian control. No Jews—or, indeed, Palestinians—lived in what became known as Jordan’s ‘West Bank.’ There were Jordanian Arabs and Arab refugees. Only when Israeli Jews, identified as ‘settlers,’ began to return to their biblical homeland after the Six-Day War did a ‘Palestinian’ national identity emerge. Then international organizations and media, oblivious to Jewish history and international law, began to berate the Jewish state for depriving Palestinians of ‘their’ homeland.
     “In the currently furious debate over Israeli ‘annexation,’ {opponents of ‘annexation’} ignore a century of international law. Never rescinded, it protects the right of Jews to inhabit {all of} the Land of Israel west of the Jordan River. Nor do the {opponents} seem aware that the Kingdom of Jordan comprises two-thirds of Palestine, gifted by Churchill to Abdullah a century ago. And, according to the most recent census, more than half the Jordanian population is of Palestinian origin. The location of a Palestinian state is east, not west, of the Jordan River.
     “It is likely to remain an imposing challenge for Israel, confronting both external and internal opposition, to justify ‘annexing’ Judea and Samaria, although ‘returning’ is more accurate. Extending Israeli sovereignty over settlements is not annexation of ‘Palestinian’ land. It is, by history and under international law, Jewish land. And, since Palestinians comprise at least half of Jordan’s population, living in two-thirds of ‘Palestine’ as demarcated by international law a century ago and never rescinded, it is a stretch to imagine them as ‘homeless.’
     “And, one might wonder, how can Israel ‘annex’ the land that is its biblical and historical homeland? (Ref. 4)

     Opponents of Israel’s reclaiming parts of Judea and Samaria charge that it “violates international law.” Experts in international law, however, disagree.

     The “legal basis for Israel’s declaration of sovereignty dates back to the League of Nations in 1922 allocating all of Israel, including Judea and Samaria, for the purpose of establishing the Jewish national home. That was based on the San Remo Resolution from 1920, an internationally recognized agreement that called for ‘the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people.’
     “ ‘The Arab countries and most of the Arabs resident in British Mandate-controlled Palestine, rejected the 1947 United Nations partition plan,’ which attempted to override the San Remo Resolution by creating a Jewish state and an Arab state.
     “Because the Arabs rejected the UN partition plan ‘it has no relevance today under international law,’ . . . there is no other country that has a legal claim to the territory. Furthermore, in the course of history, no state border has ever separated Judea, Samaria and the Jordan Valley from the rest of Israel.
     “. . . the term ‘annexation’ is incorrect, because under international law ‘annexation’ is the acquisition of territory by one state ‘at the expense of another state.’ Jordan’s control of Judea and Samaria between 1948 and 1967 was never recognized internationally, and the Jordanians absolved themselves of any claim to the territory when they signed the 1994 peace treaty with Israel.
     “Critics will point to UN resolution 242, which calls for Israeli military withdrawal from ‘territories,’ but {Lord Caradon}, Britain’s ambassador to the UN and author of 242, said that he specifically wrote ‘territories’ and not ‘the territories’ in order to not force Israel to withdraw to the old armistice lines.
     “ ‘It would have been wrong to demand that Israel return to its positions of 4 June 1967 because those positions were undesirable and artificial.’
     “. . . Lord Caradon, said in 1974. ‘They were just armistice lines. That’s why we didn’t demand that the Israelis return to them and I think we were right not to.’
     “Another major factor missing from Resolution 242? The words ‘Palestinians’ or ‘Palestine’ are not mentioned even once. The resolution only talks about existing states and calls for a just settlement of ‘the refugee problem.’
     “Accordingly . . . Israel has the right under international law to apply its civilian law to these areas, where half a million Jewish Israelis already live. ” ” (Ref. 5)

     Back of the time of the American War of Independence, Tories, also known as Loyalists for their loyalty to the British crown, were colonists who helped and even fought on the side of the British during the American Revolutionary War. After the War of Independence, the United States did not carve out a special area in which Tories could have their own independent nation. Why then, would Israel be expected to carve out of its historical and biblical homeland a “Palestinian” state with the expressed intent of destroying Israel?

     After the Mexican War, the then-nation of Texas and later, the United States, did not give Mexicans in Texas an independent nation of their own. Former Mexicans had the choice or becoming citizens of Texas, then the United States, or leaving. “Palestinians” living in Judea and Samaria should be treated similarly.

     Today, “Palestinians” living in Samaria and Judea should have, by historical precedent, become citizens of Israel - as are Israeli-Arabs, should have left for the friendly lands of their Arab brethren, or they should have become resident aliens in the State if Israel. The time has long since passed when this should have occurred.

     Judea and Samaria were parts of the Land of Israel long before any Arabs set foot in the Holy Land. Judea and Samaria were never part of a “Palestinian Nation”. There never has been a “Palestinian” nation, just as there has never been a ”Palestinian” people. There have only been Arabs who, relatively recently, came to the land called Palestine and started living there, long after the Jews were driven out by the Romans. These Arabs never had a country of their own - they were just residents of this land called Palestine and were always the subject of whoever ruled the land – sometimes Romans, sometimes Turks and sometimes the British. Today, the world needs to understand that the part of historical Palestine west of the Jordan River is the State of Israel and that part of the State of Israel is composed of the regions biblically and historically called Judea and Samaria. Everyone living within the State of Israel is guaranteed religious freedom and equality, irrespective of race or religion in Israel’s declaration of Independence and as 70+ years of historical fact have shown to be the reality.


  1. Why History Matters: The 1967 Six-Day War, David Harris, The Huffington Post, 5 June 2015.
  2. Opinion: Israel just wants to extend its rule over lands it already controls, Alex Traiman, World Israel News,
    24 June 2020.
  3. The Morality of Israel’s ‘Annexation’ Reclaiming ownership of indigenous lands – and governing those outside the process of history., Jason D. Hill, RUTHFULLY YOURS, 29 May 2020.
  4. Annexation? Or Reclaiming What’s Ours , Jerold S. Auerbach, The Jewish Press, Page 9, 19 June 2020.
  5. Fully Legal: Israeli Sovereignty in Judea and Samaria Does Not Violate Int’l Law, Yakir Benzion,
    United With Israel, 6 July 2020.

  11 August 2020 {Article_427; Israel_46}    
Go back to the top of the page