The Yeshiva World
On Tuesday, eleven days before the 15th anniversary of the disengagement, MKs from the opposition as well as the coalition (Yamina and Likud), filed a bill that would repeal most of the regulations put in place by the disengagement bill in 2005. The new bill would leave in place the monetary compensation packages promised to the 10,000+ evacuees from the 25 towns that were evacuated and demolished while allowing people to return to the demolished towns and rebuild them.
The disengagement began on August 15, 2005, and the evacuations and demolitions were completed by September 12th of that year.
MK Bezalel Smotrich (Yamina), who is one of the initiators of the bill along with Coalition chairman Miki Zohar (Likud) said, “Fifteen years after the horrible and terrible foolishness off the evacuation from Gush Katif and northern Samaria and the destruction of that wonderful part of the country, the time has come to correct that mistake.”
Even if the bill were to pass, it is unlikely that Israelis would be allowed to return to rebuild towns in the Gaza Strip, as the territory is ruled by Hamas.
Pragmatically, the implication of the bill would be to open the door to allowing settlers to rebuild the four demolished Samaria settlements of Sa-Nur, Homesh, Ganim, and Kadim.
While the territory of the Shomron is still controlled by Israel, the Disengagement Law placed the region where the towns were in a closed military zone in order to prevent settlers from returning.
Smotrich explained: “This bill, which would repeal Disengagement, would pave the way, first and foremost, for the re-establishment of the four destroyed settlements in northern Samaria.”
Smotrich went so far as to say that, in the end, “We will rebuild Gush Katif once again because these are errors that must be corrected.”
Similar bills have been filed in the past but have never advanced to the Knesset plenum. There is hope that this time will be different as the territory in the Shomron where these towns were located is outside of the region allotted to Israel by President Donald Trump’s peace initiative.