Cablegate: Gush Katif Visa Applicants Expect Protests Against

This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.



E.O. 12958: N/A

1. Summary. In February, Conoff interviewed three visa
applicants from the Gush Katif settlement bloc who shared
their views on PM Sharon's disengagement plan. The settlers
said they expected Gush Katif residents to oppose the PM's
plan through both legal and political channels. One
applicant, a 19 year-old woman, reported a prevailing
inclination among Gush Katif settlers to resist any
government evacuation of the settlement, while the other two
applicants, a middle aged couple, asserted that they would
personally abide by a government order to vacate Gush Katif.
The 19 year-old woman related that the consensus in Gush
Katif is that no government will ever remove the Gaza
settlements. End Summary.

2. The first two applicants, a middle-aged couple
originally from South Africa who associate with the National
Religious Party, moved to Gush Katif in 1977 because, in
their words, they felt "Jews should live everywhere in Eretz
Yisrael" and they "wanted to build something new." They
also mentioned that the government's financial incentives at
the time encouraged them to move. The couple stated that
they would certainly abide by any government order to vacate
Gush Katif. They said, however, that they would use all
legal means at their disposal to protest the Prime
Minister's initiative. They opined that clearing Gaza of
settlements would not improve Israel's security because of
what they termed, "a worldwide Muslim problem" regarding

3. The third applicant, a 19-year old woman born and raised
in Gush Katif who also associates with the National
Religious Party, reported that the consensus in Gush Katif
is that no government will ever remove the Gaza settlements.
According to her, the settlers claim the government has been
making idle threats to remove them from Gush Katif since
1978. Her parents moved to Gush Katif for religious and
nationalist reasons in 1977, believing that Gaza is part of
"The Greater Land of Israel" and therefore belongs to them.
They own greenhouses in Gush Katif and make their living in

4. The applicant stated that the prevailing view in Gush
Katif is that in the current environment, the settlers
should oppose the PM's plan through political pressure to
show the government that the Gaza settlers will not submit
easily to an evacuation. She stated that if the government
does move to evacuate Gush Katif, an event the settlers deem
extremely unlikely, they expect to practice the type of
resistance used at Yamit in the Sinai in 1982. According to
her, the Gush Katif settlers believe that if they make it
difficult for the government to evacuate their settlement,
then the government would be loath to remove other
settlements. She reported that in the unlikely event of an
evacuation, her parents would expect financial compensation
from the government, as their livelihood depends entirely on
their greenhouses in the settlement. As for herself, she
expects that the PM's disengagement plan will ultimately be
inconsequential and that she will settle in Gush Katif when
she marries to raise her own children there.


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