Israel’s Knesset saw some heated controversy this week when they voted to pass a bill referred to as the “Electricity Law.” This bill was written and submitted to the Knesset by Mansour Abbas, who is the head of the United Arab List party in the Knesset. This bill has garnered a lot of resistance over the past few months from right-wing lawmakers across many different parties in the Knesset, including Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud party and even some members of Prime Minister Naftali Bennett’s own Yamina party.
What is the Electricity Law? In short, the bill proposes to connect tens of thousands of Arab homes in the southern desert and Galilee regions to the national power grid of Israel. Also, it would connect these structures to Israel’s water supply and other infrastructure. This sounds like a good thing; right? Hooking up thousands of Arab homes to Israel’s power and water infrastructure? Well, there was actually a sensible reason that these homes were not given electricity and water in the first place. All these houses were illegally built on government state land, without permits and in defiance of Israel’s established infrastructure development. The Electricity Law will encourage and even reward the illegal Arab takeover of Jewish land.
This bill was actually passed into law in the Knesset on Wednesday of this past week. Even though most of the right-wing parties objected to this new bill, one of the main reasons it passed is because the anti-Zionist Arab party who submitted the bill is currently part of Prime Minister Naftali Bennett’s coalition government. Bennett, whose own party is considered rightwing, had to vote for this bill in order to keep his government (composed of right-wing, left-wing, and Arab parties) from falling apart and plunging the nation into new elections.
Unfortunately, these illegal homes which will be affected by the Electricity Law are only a small part of a large, widespread, illegal takeover of Jewish land by Arabs all across Israel. In the desert, known as the Negev, the Bedouin population is illegally taking over hundreds of thousands of dunams (one dunam equals one quarter of an acre) of state land by building illegal structures and farms wherever they want. Regavim, an Israeli organization who acts to prevent illegal seizure of Israel state land, reported:
“There is an illegal community spread out over hundreds of thousands of dunams,. . . a tremendous amount of squatters on a vast stretch of land. No planning, no regulation, and no solution from the government for this matter.”
Inside Judea and Samaria, this land grabbing is even more of a problem. According to Regavim, as of 2020, there are 65,572 illegally built Palistinian structures inside of Area C, which was designated by the 1995 Oslo Accords for Jewish land development and building. These structures and homes are completely illegal and show that the Palestinians are not interested in simply building in Areas A and B, both of which were designated for Palestinian development, but are trying to seize all the land they can and keep Israel from establishing homes in their ancestral homeland.
That being said, the struggle to settle the land of Israel is still very real, and Israel’s enemies are fighting hard to take away the land that was promised by God to Israel.
Now, more than ever, is the time for pro-Israel Christians all around the world to stand up and show their undivided support for Israel and their right to settle in the land where God told Abraham in Genesis 12: “To your descendants I will give this land.”