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Palestinians emboldened by the new US administration

Israel has experienced an increase in terrorist attacks since the US elections took place in November. It is clear that the Palestinians are becoming emboldened by the liberal-leaning administration that has just been sworn into office in the United States. 

This week, a Jewish Israeli man wandered too close to a small Palestinian village in Samaria while out jogging. Five Arabs jumped him and beat him severely. He narrowly escaped with moderate injuries. Since Esther Horgan was murdered by an Arab terrorist in northern Samaria when she was out jogging in a park near her community last month, this man can be grateful that he escaped with his life. 

Also this week, a Palestinian approached a female IDF officer at a Samaria road junction, pulled out a knife, and attempted to stab her. She was able to defend herself until one of her colleagues came to her aid, shooting and killing the terrorist. No Israelis were injured. 

It is no secret that Palestinians illegally build houses and schools inside Area C in Judea and Samaria, an area that was slated for Israel’s development under the 1993 Oslo Accords. This week however, they made a very bold move. A group of Arabs, accompanied by Palestinian Authority officials and PA policemen, entered an IDF firing zone inside Area C and held a tree planting event. They even posted photos and videos to social media. Their message was clear. They are not afraid of pushback by Israel or the international community. 

Why are the Palestinians showing an increased boldness in recent weeks? 

Since Joe Biden was elected as president of the United States, he has revealed his intentions to:

  • Re-open negotiations and dialogue with the Palestinian Authority
  • Re-open the PLO (Palestine Liberation Organization) mission in Washington D.C.
  • Potentially reopen the US Consulate in East Jerusalem 
  • Restore US Aid to the Palestinian Authority
  • In general, reestablish diplomatic relations with the Palestinians

Biden’s new administration also supports a two-state solution as the answer to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and condemns any annexation of territories or settlement activity by Israel. 

Besides these agenda items, many of Biden’s senior leadership picks are officials who worked on the 2015 Iran deal and do not have a history of being friendly to Israel. Already, Biden’s newly appointed officials are showing a priority of trying to return Iran to the 2015 deal, a disastrous move, since Iran has already repulsed the idea and has openly declared that they are increasing their uranium enrichment to 20%. Some experts believe they could reach nuclear capability within a matter of months at such a rate of enrichment. 

Even amidst so much change and confusion in the world, prophecy is still being fulfilled in Israel. In honor of Tu Bishvat this week, HaYovel planted 825 trees in Samaria as part of our ongoing Greening Israel project. 

Tu Bishvat is sort of like the Israeli version of Arbor Day, and it is often marked by planting trees in Israel. Biblically, it was the time of year to differentiate between last year’s agricultural cycle and the year to come. During the times of the Temple, farmers would calculate the past year’s tithe from their harvest on this day and then take their offerings up to the Temple. 

“So they will say, ‘This land that was desolate has become like the garden of Eden; and the wasted, desolate, and ruined cities are now fortified and inhabited.’” (Ezekiel 36:35)

Tu Bishvat (the 15th of Shvat) also marks the very beginning of spring here in Israel. Even though we still have some “winter” weather before us, the grass is already beginning to turn green, flowers are budding, and the first almond trees are beginning to blossom, a sure sign that spring is around the corner. 

Remember that God is still in control of His land, people, and ultimately, the redemption of the world. 

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