General, Press Releases

Over 400 Rabbis call on Prime Minister Netanyahu to stop administrative home demolitions

9 Comments 05 February 2015

PRESS RELEASE | FEBRUARY 3

Over 400 Rabbis from around the world call on Prime Minister Netanyahu to stop administrative home demolitions.

 

Masadeh Demo10 26.5

 

The letter below urges Netanyahu to stop the State’s opposition to a High Court petition submitted by Rabbis for Human Rights along with partners the village council of Dirat-Rafa’aya, The Jerusalem Legal Aid and Human Rights Center, The Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions, and The Society of Saint Yves- The Catholic Center for Human Rights, seeking to put an end to administrative demolitions by allowing Palestinian villages in Area C to participate in planning and developing their communities.

 

While we wait for the decision of the judges, these rabbis and cantors are asking the State, at its own initiative, to implement moral, reasonable and fair planing and zoning principles that are in-line with international law and Jewish tradition.

 

So far, over 400 rabbis and cantors from Israel, the USA, Canada, Britain and other countries have signed the call to Prime Minister Netanyahu to stop the practice of home demolitions. Every year, hundreds of Palestinian homes are demolished due to discriminatory administrative plans created and implemented by the Israel military without significant Palestinian influence. Palestinians are very rarely allowed to build, even on their own land.

 

Several prominent rabbis who signed:

Rabbi Mauricio Balter – Co-Chairperson of the Rabbinical Assembly of Israel and carries senior positions in international organizations.

Rabbi Amy Eilberg – The first woman ordained as a Conservative rabbi

Rabbi Laura Janner Klausner – Senior Rabbi of the Reform movement in Britain

Rabbi Jonathan Wittenberg – Senior Rabbi of Masorti Judaism UK

The late Rabbi Zalman Schachter Shalomi z’l (signed before his passing) – Founder and leader of the Jewish Renewal movement.

Rabbi Denise Eger – president of the Central Congress of American Rabbis (CCAR)

Full text of the letters and signatures:

Dear Prime Minister Netanyahu,

In 2005, over four hundred rabbis wrote an open letter to then Prime Minister Sharon expressing concern about the administrative demolition of Palestinian homes. We are extremely disapointed that the Government of Israel is opposing a High Court petition offering a constructive solution for alleviating this issue. Please use your authority to end this opposition.

Part of the 2005 letter read:

“The homes that were demolished were not demolished for any security reason. None of the people in these homes engaged in violence or harboring terrorists. They were demolished because of a violation of zoning regulations in a context where it is almost impossible for Palestinian families in those parts of the West Bank under Israeli civilian control or in Jerusalem to legally obtain building permits… “

The context referred to was the fact that planning and zoning laws severely restrict the ability of Palestinians to build homes, even on the lands that the State recognizes as belonging to them. There has been no representation or true ability for Palestinians to determine how to properly plan for their communities since local and district planning committees were abolished in 1971. The army plans for them.

Back in the 19th century, Rabbi Shimshon Raphael Hirsch warned in his Torah commentary about the disastrous consequences when, even with the best of intentions, those with the power in their hands try to appropriate for themselves the task of determining how to be just to others. The current discriminatory planning process exemplifies this, and violates the Jewish prohibition against acting “איפה ואיפה.”

Civil Administration (Army) planning officials have acknowledged that they don’t really have the ability to adequately plan for Palestinian communities. Currently, the failure of the existing system is clear. Thousands have been forced to build without permits, and great human suffering is caused when hundreds of homes are demolished each year in Area C alone.

We are therefore disappointed that the Government of Israel has decided to oppose the High Court petition submitted by Rabbis For Human Rights and partner organizations to restore local planning committees. In the hearing on the petition on April 28th of this year, the judges said clearly that the current situation is unacceptable, and gave the State ninety days to come up with a proposal to truly involve Palestinians in planning their communities. While the judges indicated that they would not force the State to restore the local and district planning committees cancelled by military order in 1971, they indicated that there was no legal reason for the State not to do so.

However, the State’s response was a proposal to institutionalize consultations that are already taking place in many cases. These consultations have not significantly altered the situation because the Civil Administration has no obligation to take into account what they hear. We also saw in the spring that consultations were suspended in response to moves by the Palestinian Authority.

Human rights must not be politicized. The State of Israel has an obligation to ensure that every human being under her control, each created in God’s Image, has a fair chance to build a home for him/herself and his/her family, irrespective of the current state of the peace process or differing opinions about what areas will be under Israel’s control in a future final status agreement. We urge the State of Israel to withdraw its opposition to RHR’s petition.

 

 

 

 

Rabbis and Cantors in Israel

 

 

 

Rabbi Yehoyada Amir

 

Rabbi Raphael Arzt

 

Rabbi Arik Ascherman

 

Rabbi Sigal Asher

 

Rabbi Mauricio Balter

 

Rabbi Ehud Bandel

 

Rabbi Simcha Daniel Burstyn

 

Rabbi Ze’ev Cutter

 

Rabbi Shelton Donnell

 

Rabbi Yoav Ende

 

Rabbi Ohad Ezrachi

 

Rabbi Paul Feinberg

 

Rabbi Rosalind Gold

 

Rabbi Miri Gold

 

Rabbi Esteban Gottfried

 

Rabbi Ariella Graetz

 

Rabbi Michael Graetz

 

Rabbi Yehiel Grenimann

 

Rabbi Nava Hefetz

 

Rabbi Naamah Kelman

 

Cantor Evan Kent

 

Rabbi Dean Kertesz

 

Rabbi Ron Kronish

 

Rabbi Levi Lauer

 

Rabbi Jim Lebeau

 

Rabbi Barry Leff

 

Rabbi Eyal Levinson

 

Rabbi Joel Levy

 

Rabbi Jonathan Matt

 

Rabbi Neomi Meoded

 

Rabbi Jeremy Milgrom

 

Rabbi Joel Oseran

 

Rabbi Mira Raz

 

Rabbi Uri Regev

 

Rabbi Ed Rettig

 

Rabbi Stanley Ringler

 

Rabbi Peretz Rodman

 

Rabbi Ayala Ronen Samuels

Rabbi Emma Sham-ba

 

Rabbi David Rosen

 

Rabbi Ofer Sabath-Beit-Halachmi

 

Rabbi Galia Sadan

 

Rabbi Ellie Tikvah Sarah

 

Rabbi Michael Schwartz

 

Rabbi Haim Shalom

 

Rabbi Gail Schuster-Bouskila

 

Rabbi Susan Silverman

 

Rabbi Anita Steiner

 

Rabbi Ma’ayan Turner

 

Rabbi Kobi Weiss

 

Rabbi Moshe Yehudai

 

Rabbi Gili Zidkiyahu

 

Dr Rabbi Aharon Zinger

 

Rabbi David Zisenwine

 

Rabbi Or Zohar

 

 

 

Rabbis and Cantors in Great Britain

 

Rabbi R Benjamin

 

Rabbi Francis Berry

 

Rabbi Howard Cooper

 

Rabbi Colin Eimer

 

Rabbi Warren Elf

 

Rabbi Mijael Even-David

 

Rabbi Paul Freedman

 

Rabbi Helen Freeman

 

Rabbi Amanda Golby

 

Rabbi Mark Goldsmith

 

Rabbi Aaron Goldstein

 

Rabbi Michael Hilton

 

Rabbi Jason Holtz

 

Cantor Zoe Jacobs

 

Rabbi Margaret Jacobi

 

Rabbi Richard Jacobi

 

Rabbi Laura Janner-Klausner

 

Rabbi Leah Jordan

 

Rabbi Deborah Kahn-Harris

 

Rabbi Sandra Kviat

 

Rabbi Monique Mayer

 

Rabbi Maurice Michaels

 

Rabbi David Mitchel

 

Rabbi Lea Muehlstein

 

Rabbi Jeffrey Newman

 

Rabbi René Pfertzel

 

Rabbi Sylvia Rothschild

 

Rabbi Sybil Sheridan

 

Rabbi Irit Shillor

 

Rabbi Amnon Daniel Smith

 

Rabbi Mark Solomon

 

Rabbi Zvi Solomons

 

Rabbi Jackie Tabick

 

Rabbi Larry Tabick

 

Rabbi Charles Wallach

 

Rabbi Jonathan Wittenberg

 

Rabbi Alexandra Wright

 

Rabbi Cheryl Wunch

 

Rabbi Roderick Young

 

Rabbi Debbie Young-Somers

 

 

 

Rabbis and Cantors in Europe

 

Rabbi Ruven Bar Ephraim

 

Rabbi Tamarah Benima

 

Rabbi Clary Rooda

 

Rabbi Anna de Voogt

 

Rabbi Awraham Soetendorp

 

 

 

Rabbis and Cantors in North America

 

Rabbi Susan Abramson

 

Rabbi Howard Avruhm Addison

 

Rabbi David Adelson

 

Rabbi Ron Aigen

 

Rabbi Thomas M. Alpert

 

Rabbi Steve Altarescu

 

Rabbi Renni Altman

 

Rabbi Camille Shira Angel

 

Rabbi David Ariel-Joel

 

Rabbi Stephen A Arnold

 

Rabbi Melanie Aron

 

Rabbi Daniel H Aronson

 

Rabbi Raphael W. Asher

 

Rabbi Aryeh Azriel

 

Rabbi Andy Bachman

 

Rabbinical student Benjamin Barer

 

Rabbi Lewis M Barth

 

Rabbinical student David Basior

 

Rabbi Rachel Bat-Or

 

Rabbi Marc Belgrad

 

Rabbi Haim Dov Beliak

 

Rabbi Marci Bellows

 

Rabbi Allen B Bennett

 

Rabbi Marc Berkson

Rabbi Donna Berman

 

Rabbi Joseph Berman

 

Rabbi Phyllis Berman

 

Rabbi Jonathan Biatch

 

Rabbi Binyamin Biber

 

Rabbi Yossie Bloch

 

Rabbi Barry Block

 

Rabbi Herman J. Blumberg

 

Rabbi Lewis Bogage

 

Rabbi Liz Bolton

 

Rabbi Barbara Borts

 

Rabbi Bradd Boxman

 

Rabbi Barnett Brickner

 

Rabbi Herbert Brockman

 

Rabbi Caryn Broitman

 

Rabbi Herbert Bronstein

 

Rabbi Jonathan Brumberg-Kraus

 

Rabbi Susan Bulba Carvutto

 

Rabbi Meredith Cahn

 

Rabbi Debra Cantor

 

Rabbi Steven Cardonick

 

Rabbi Reba Carmel

 

Rabbi Steven Carr Reuben

 

Rabbi Ari Carton

 

Rabbi Douglas Charing

 

Rabbi Joshua Chasan

 

Rabbinical student Misha Clebaner

 

Rabbi Debrah Cohen

 

Rabbi Howard Cohen

 

Rabbi Michael Tevya Cohen

 

Rabbi Tamara Cohen

 

Rabbi Hillel Cohn

 

Rabbi Neil Comess-Daniels

 

Rabbi Michael Conforti

 

Rabbi David J Copper

 

Rabbi Laurie Coskey

 

Rabbi Susan Cowchock

 

Rabbi Meryl Crean

 

Rabbi Matt Cutler

 

Rabbi Robin Damsky

 

Rabbi Janet Darley

 

Rabbinical student Nathan DeGroot

 

Rabbi Geoffrey Dennis

 

Rabbi Lucy Dinner

 

Rabbi Fred Dobb

 

Rabbi Robert Dobrusin

 

Rabbi Art Donsky

 

Rabbi Billy Dreskin

 

Cantor Ellen Dreskin

 

Rabbi Ellen W Dreyfus

 

Rabbi George B Driesen

 

Rabbi David Dunn Bauer

 

Rabbi Shoshana Dworsky

 

Rabbi Renee Edelman

 

Rabbi Judith Edelstein

 

Rabbi Laurence Edwards

 

Rabbi Lisa Edwards

Rabbi Denise Eger

 

Rabbi H.Bruce Ehrmann

 

Rabbi Amy Eilberg

 

Rabbi Barat Ellman

 

Rabbi Cindy Enger

 

Rabbi Rachel Esserman

 

Rabbi Susan Falk

 

Rabbi Elyse Feishman

 

Rabbi Edward Feld

 

Cantor Devorah Felder-Levy

 

Rabbi Fern Feldman

 

Rabbi Ted Feldman

 

Rabbi Zev Hayyim Feyer

 

Rabbi Brian Field

 

Rabbi Brian Fink

 

Rabbi Tirzah Firestone

 

Rabbi Frank A Fischer

 

Rabbi Ellen Flax

 

Rabbi David L. Freeman

 

Rabbi Susan Freeman

 

Rabbi Gershon Freidlin

Rabbi Jonathan Freirich

 

Rabbi Dayle Friedman

 

Rabbi Joan S Friedman

 

Rabbi John Friedman

 

Rabbinical student Lev Friedman

 

Rabbi Pam Frydman

 

Rabbi Baruch Frydman-Kohl

 

Rabbi Stephen Fuchs

 

Rabbi Nancy Fuchs Kreimer

 

Rabbi Roy Furman

 

Rabbi Joyce Galaski

 

Rabbi Hillel Gamoran

 

Rabbi Hillel Gamoran

 

Rabbi Rachel Gartner

 

Rabbi Jonah Geffen

 

Rabbi Laura Geller

 

Rabbi Everett Gendler

 

Rabbi Gary Gerson

 

Rabbinical student Joseph Gindi

 

Rabbi Miriyam Glazer

 

Rabbi Arnold S Gluck

 

Rabbi Bob Gluck

 

Rabbi Andrew Gold

 

Rabbi Neal Gold

 

Rabbi Barbara Goldman-Wartell

 

Rabbi Debra E Goldstein

 

Rabbi Seth Goldstein

 

Rabbi Seth Goldstein

 

Rabbi Jeffrey Goldwasser

 

Rabbi David Gordis

 

Rabbi Julie Gordon

 

Rabbi Maralee Gordon

 

Rabbi Lynn Gottlieb

 

Rabbi Lauren Grabelle Herrmann

 

Rabbi Roberto D Graetz

 

Rabbi Joshua Grater

 

Rabbi Gary Greene

 

Rabbi David Greenstein

 

Rabbi Hannah Greenstein

 

Rabbi Suzanne Griffel

 

Rabbi Susan Grossman

 

Rabbi Joshua Gutoff

 

Rabbi Debra R Hachen

 

Rabbi Moshe Halfon

 

Rabbi Richard Hammerman

 

Rabbi Howard Handler

 

Rabbi Maurice Harris

 

Rabbi Vered L. Harris

 

Rabbi Jill Hausman

 

Rabbi Abraham Havivi

 

Rabbi Linda Henry Goodman

 

Rabbi Floyd Herman

 

Rabbi Victor Hoffman

 

Rabbi Linda Holtzman

 

Rabbi Margaret Holub

 

Rabbi Daniel Horwitz

 

Rabbi Mark Hurvitz

 

Rabbi Me’irah Iliinsky

 

Rabbi Debbie Israel

 

Rabbi Daria Jacobs-Velde

 

Rabbi Josh Jacobs-Velde

 

Rabbi Rachel Kahn-Troster

 

Rabbi Cassi Kail

Rabbi Steven Kane

 

Rabbi Peter E Kasdan

 

Rabbi Nancy Kasten

 

Rabbi Joanna Katz

 

Rabbi Reuben M Katz

 

Rabbi Hillel Katzir

 

Rabbi Peg Kershenbaum

 

Rabbi Noah Kitty

 

Rabbi Amy Klein

 

Rabbi Jason Klein

 

Rabbi Joe Klein

 

Rabbi Sharon Kleinbaum

 

Rabbi David L. Kline

 

Rabbi Janeen Kobrinsky

 

Rabbi Debra Kolodny

 

Rabbi Ira Korinow

 

Rabbi Raquel S Kosovske

 

Rabbi Chava Koster

 

Rabbinical student Ilana Krakowski

 

Rabbi Michael L Kramer

 

Rabbi Douglas E Krantz

 

Rabbi Marc Adam Kraus

 

Rabbi Dr Yaacov Kravitz

 

Rabbi Leah Kroll

 

Rabbi Charles Kroloff

 

Rabbi Jonathan Kuptetz

 

Rabbi Susan Laemmle

 

Rabbi Karen Landy

 

Rabbi Gilah Langner

 

Rabbi Anson Laytner

 

Rabbi Darby Leigh

 

Rabbi Michele Lenke

 

Rabbi Michael Lerner

 

Cantor Janet Leuchter

 

Rabbi Eli-Yoel Levin

 

Rabbi Mark H Levin

 

Rabbi Richard N Levy

 

Rabbi Sue E Levy

 

Rabbi Yael Levy

 

Rabbi Sheldon Lewis

 

Rabbi Mordechai Liebling

 

Rabbi Janet B. Liss

 

Rabbi Jane Rachel Litman

 

Rabbi Richard Litvak

 

Rabbi Andrea London

 

Rabbi Michael Luckens

 

Rabbi Sarah Mack

 

Rabbi Mark Mahler

 

Rabbi Nina Mandel

 

Rabbi Shana Margolin

 

Rabbi Marc Margolius

 

Rabbi Jeff Marker

 

Rabbi Dr Susan Marks

 

Rabbi Nathan Martin

 

Cantor Jacqueline Marx

 

Rabbi Michael Mellen

 

Cantor Hazzan Harold Messinger

 

Rabbi Rachel Mikva

 

Rabbi Heather Ellen Miller

 

Cantor Annice Miller Benamy

 

Rabbi Jordan Millstein

 

Rabbi Joshua Minkin

 

Rabbi Michelle Missaghieh

 

Rabbi David Mitchel

 

Rabbi David Mivasair

 

Rabbi Linda Motzkin

 

Cantor Julie Newman

 

Rabbi Dev Noily

 

Rabbinical student Salem Pearce

 

Rabbi Barbara Penzner

 

Rabbi Helen Plotkin

 

Rabbinical student Louis Polisson

 

Rabbi Charles P Rabinowitz

 

Rabbi Arnie Rachlis

 

Rabbi Debra Rappaport

 

Rabbi Yaakov Reef

 

Rabbi Frederick Reeves

 

Rabbi Paula Reimers

 

Rabbi Victor H Reinstein

 

Rabbi Yair D Robinson

 

Rabbi Brant Rosen

 

Rabbi Aaron Rosenberg

 

Rabbi James B Rosenberg

 

Rabbinical student Ken Rosenstein

 

Rabbi Marc Rosenstein

 

Rabbi John Rosove

 

Rabbi Michael Ross

 

Rabbi Jeff Roth

 

Rabbi Jonathan Rubenstein

 

Rabbi Elissa Sachs-Kohen

 

Rabbi Andrew Sacks

 

Rabbi Amy Sapowith

 

Rabbi Jeffery Saxe

 

Rabbi Zalman Hiyyah Schachter-Shalomi, z’l

Cantor Jodi Schechtman

 

Rabbi Howard Schneider

 

Rabbi Elhanan Sunny Schnitzer

 

Rabbi Joel Schwab

 

Rabbi Jeremy Schwartz

 

Rabbi Sidney Schwarz

 

Rabbi Chaim Seidler-Feller

 

Rabbi Gerald Serotta

 

Rabbi Isaac Serotta

 

Rabbi Judy Shanks

 

Cantor Linda Shivers

 

Rabbi Becky Silverstein

 

Rabbi Jonathan Singer

 

Rabbi Suzanne Singer

 

Cantor Raini Siroty

 

Rabbi Hank Skirball

 

Rabbi Jonathan Slater

 

Rabbinical student Stephen Slater

 

Rabbi Amy Joy Small

 

Rabbi Uriel Smith

 

Rabbi Joel Soffin

 

Rabbi Ruth H Sohn

 

Rabbi Eric Solomon

 

Cantor Kerith Spencer-Shapiro

 

Rabbi Scott Sperling

 

Rabbi Toba Spitzer

 

Rabbi Sonya Starr

 

Rabbi David Steinberg

 

Rabbi Jeffrey Stiffman

 

Rabbi Adam Stock Spiker

 

Rabbi Ariel Stone

 

Rabbi Andrew Straus

 

Rabbi Joshua Strom

 

Rabbi Alvin M Sugarman

Rabbi Alana Suskin

 

Rabbi Robert Tabak

 

Rabbi Reuven Taff

 

Rabbi Susan Talve

 

Rabbi Elliott Tepperman

 

Rabbi David Teutsch

 

Rabbi Andrew Vogel

 

Rabbi Heidi Waldmann

 

Rabbi Brian Walt

 

Rabbi Arthur Waskow

 

Rabbi Pamela Wax

 

Rabbi Elye Wechterman

 

Rabbi Sheila Weinberg

 

Cantor Alan Weiner

 

Rabbi Cheryl Weiner

 

Rabbi Simkha Y Weintraub

 

Rabbi Cory Weiss

 

Rabbi Max Weiss

 

Rabbinical student Ora Weiss

 

Rabbi Rachel Weiss

 

Rabbi Zari Weiss

 

Rabbi Shifra Weiss-Penzias

 

Rabbi Nancy H Wiener

 

Rabbi Shohama Wiener

 

Rabbi Paula Jayne Winnig

 

Rabbi Greg Wolfe

 

Rabbi Paul Yedwab

 

Rabbi Shawn Zevit

 

Rabbi Laurie Zimmerman

 

Rabbi Michael Zimmerman

 

Rabbi David J Zucker

 

 

To view the petition online:

https://secure.avaaz.org/en/petition/Prime_Minister_Netanyahu_withdraw_the_States_opposition_to_RHRs_petition_planning_petition/

An online list of the rabbis who signed:

http://rhr.org.il/eng/wp-content/uploads/RABBINICALPETITIONplanningpetitionr.pdf?d=9

More on the High Court petition:

http://rhr.org.il/eng/area-c-planning-appeal/

 

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