Migron relief
Hebrew media review

Migron relief

The High Court of Justice calls for the illegal outpost's demolition, and the archives release the Munich papers

Ilan Ben Zion, a reporter at the Associated Press, is a former news editor at The Times of Israel. He holds a Masters degree in Diplomacy from Tel Aviv University and an Honors Bachelors degree from the University of Toronto in Near and Middle Eastern Civilizations, Jewish Studies, and English.

Residents of the evacuated settlement of Migron in 2012. (photo credit: Lior Mizrahi/Flash90)
Residents of the evacuated settlement of Migron in 2012. (photo credit: Lior Mizrahi/Flash90)

Thursday’s top stories vary in the Israeli press, with each paper devoting its front page to a different issue. Maariv reports on declassified documents involving  the 1972 Munich Olympic massacre. Yedioth Ahronoth reports on the announcement by Egypt that it wants to develop a nuclear reactor. Haaretz splits its front page between the High Court of Justice decision on Migron and the 40th anniversary of the Munich Olympics massacre. Israel Hayom reports that the Migron outpost must be evacuated within days.

Haaretz reports that the High Court judges ruled that the residents of Migron “must first request permits, then build.” The court rejected the settlers’ appeal to remain in their homes in Migron, and said all residents must leave within six days, and the buildings must be demolished by a week thereafter — September 11.

Regarding the residents who purchased land in the illegal outpost ex post facto and then requested to remain, the court remarked that it was a problematic issue because they allegedly purchased it years after the buildings were erected and populated. They will come to a decision regarding these six homes in the next three months.

The paper quotes the dismayed residents saying that Wednesday’s decision marked “a dark day for the State of Israel,” on which civil rights were stripped from right-wingers. They further called the government’s action a “brutal rape.”

Columnist Yossi Verter critiques the Migron residents’ statements saying, “Once again, the robbed Cossacks are crying foul, a moment before they relocate to the shiny new settlement that the state built for them nearby at a cost of NIS 30 million.”

Israel Hayom quotes Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein calling on the residents of Migron “to refrain from harsh words and to act responsibly” by submitting to a peaceful evacuation.

Dr. Aviad HaCohen writes in Israel Hayom that Wednesday’s decision marked a “sad day for Israel, an important day for the rule of law.” He draws the obvious parallel between the impending demolition of Migron on September 11 and the major tragedy that happened that day. He remarks that it will be “a sad day and painful day for Migron residents, who will be forced to leave their homes and watch the fruit of their labor drown in a storm of bulldozers.”

Nonetheless, “unlike politicians, the High Court of Justice doesn’t need to appease anyone,” HaCohen writes. Despite the unpopularity of the move among Migron residents and their supporters, “it needed to protect faith in the law, and it did, according to its best understanding and belief.”

The court, writes HaCohen, “must determine legal decisions according to the law and by the power of its legal considerations, not according to the direction of public opinion, even if it blows full force in the face of Migron.”

Yedioth Ahronoth sticks its report on Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi’s announcement that his country will restart its nuclear energy program on Page 14. The paper quotes Morsi saying that it is his intention to build nuclear cores for civilian purposes, namely energy.

“We are already learning the subject, and it is our intention to reopen the nuclear reactor program that has been neglected, and to acquire clean energy,” Yedioth quotes him saying.

The paper instead devotes its main coverage to an exposé on the teenage girl charged in the brutal attack on an Arab teen in Jerusalem two weeks ago. They publish the girl’s Facebook posts before and after the assault, demonstrating her virulent hatred for Arabs and apparent admission to involvement — or at least witnessing of — the incident. The paper details her ultra-Orthodox background and her Jekyll-to-Hyde transformation into what the paper calls “the living spirit behind the lynch.”

Maariv reports on the Munich Olympics documents that the Israel State Archives declassified on Wednesday. These files reveal the behind-the-scenes workings of the Israeli government in response to the capture and subsequent murder of the Olympic team by Palestinian terrorists. The paper describes the documents as “revealing the powerlessness in Jerusalem during the moment of truth, but also the helplessness of the German government, which could have prevented the attack.”

The paper interviewed the Mossad chief during the 1972 Munich massacre, Zvi Zamir, who told it that “I will not forget for a moment the disgrace of the Germans” and that “only Jews can protect Jews.”

“I wrote at the time from Munich that the Germans didn’t make a minimal effort to save lives. I said it then and I say it today, and that feeling will accompany me my whole life. I will not forget for a moment the horrible failure and the disgrace of the Germans,” he told Maariv.

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