And they went up on the breadth of the earth, and compassed the camp of the saints about, and the beloved city Revelations 20:9
In the early spring of 2070, Mr. Israel Israeli could barely remember the now defunct Israeli Administration. Two thousand years after the destruction of the Second Temple, it was clear that the Zionists had failed to construct the Third one to the extent that young people needed to be explained what a “Zionist” had been. One of the publicists* had ruined them.
“Good riddance!” he mumbled while rushing to Court. He was conducting a desperate attempt to block his Jewish landowner from evicting him after the expiration of the 100-year lease. In 2013, the Orthodox Patriarchate of Jerusalem,** had sold the land under his apartment. Now, it was time for him to pay the price.
Givat Oranim, sold by Orthodox Patriarchate of Jerusalem The City of God
Land Ownership During the Zionist Period
Land ownership in the Holy Land is nowadays such a complex issue that I simplified the paragraph above. I used the term “lease” to translate the more restrictive Hebrew “hachira,” which refers to a long-term lease. Technically everything above 5 years enter this category, but more often than not it refers to a century-long contract on land. Any such contract longer than 25 years is defined “hachira ledorot,” “lease-for-generations.”
In the 19th Century, Zionist Jews started a coordinated effort to buy lands in the Holy Land. Two organizations are key for understanding the current situation. The Jewish National Fund (Keren Kayemet LeYisrael, literally “Existing Fund for Israel”) was founded in 1901 to buy land in Ottoman Palestine, and afterwards in the British Mandate for Palestine, Israel and the Palestinian territories. It still keeps buying land for Jewish settlements. In 2007, it owned 13% of the total land in Israel. Yet, it doesn’t belong to the State; hence an additional body completes the picture.
Israel Land Administration manages land that is either property of the state or of the Jewish National Fund. It controls 93% of the land, the rest is privately owned or under the protection of religious authorities.
Neither the State nor the Jewish National Fund sell lands. The best one can achieve is a lease-for-generations agreement with them. In other words, to rent the land for a century.
A final point I must mention before addressing the current issue is Israeli mortgages. I put that in a wider context in Mossad, Matrix and Mortgage; for this article it is enough to understand that they are the main control tool of the State on its slave-citizens. Mortgages allow the State’s security services (SS) two things: 1. to keep people relatively immobile, physically and socially. 2. to create a stable income source for the state, and thus indirectly for the SS themselves. A mortgage loan is the name to the financing obtained by a home buyer or builder from a financial institution. It allows using future incomes for purchasing something in the present, while the financing institution makes considerable profits from interest. These institutions are often related to governments. The loaners are from that point until they end paying the loan little more than slaves. They will be careful not to lose their jobs.
Our friend from the introduction had been tricked twice. First, he had bought the apartment from the land-leaser who got the construction permit from the State. He never owned the good he had paid for. Second, he was forced to take a lifelong mortgage at an exploitative interest from a bank controlled by the State. No wonder he had exclaimed “Good riddance!”
Monastery of the Cross | Minzar HaMatzleva (“Crucifixion-site Monastery” in Hebrew)
Super-Storm hits Jerusalem
In 1950, it leased lands to the Jewish National Fund for a century, especially in Jerusalem. Hundreds of buildings were built on them, including the Givat Oranim (Pines Hill) neighborhood shown in the picture opening this article. In year 2000, a new agreement was signed with the JNF, which paid 20 million shekels for an additional leasing period. Thus, Israel secured these parcels until year 2150.
Two years ago, the Patriarchate agreed to sell 85 parcels in Jerusalem. Most of them are in exclusive areas, including Rehavia, not far from Netanyahu’s Palace. Not all the details have been published, but it is known that the agreement includes most of the leasing rights on the land. It may refer to a percentage of the rights in all the parcels, or to a full-sale of rights only in certain parcels but not in others. The Patriarchate remains ambiguous on this.
To avoid the criticism of having sold lands to the State of Israel, the roughly $25 million deal was agreed with a Jewish-owned company registered outside Israel. Cronti Investment Limited (Roman spelling may vary) is controlled by the Ben David family, one of Jerusalem’s richest. They own many lands and are heavily invested also in “Gvaot Olam,” one of Israel’s oil-search leading companies. In recent years, substantial amounts of gas and oil had been found in the Eastern Mediterranean Basin.
Is Zion for the Zionists?
One could expect Palestinians to protest the sale of lands from the Church to the Zionists. Until now, they have not protested this deal. Less expected was the objection of Jews to the event.
Yaakov Bir specializes in the evaluation of real estate. On May 24, he said to The Marker that the fear now is that when the leasing agreements of the people currently living on the parcel expires, they will need to conduct negotiations with the Jewish company instead than with the Patriarchate. Since the company would not be accused of anti-Semitism, it would attempt to substantially increase the sum of the leasing, forcing the residents to leave in order to build more profitable structures. Mr. Bir claims they will ask for the average price of a house in the area, roughly one million dollars; this is vastly more than the leasing paid to the Patriarchate. According to his testimony, the apartments’ owners are “in big-panic.”
“Zion to the Zionists,” cried Jewish publicists. “OK, but we get the interests,” Jewish bankers answered.
The book I was reading was the classic “Typee: A Peep at Polynesian Life,” by Herman Melville and I was feeling at the moment like one of his sailors who were being chased by cannibals. Anxious to get away from his prying eyes, I moved to my bed and hid behind the opaque curtain separating me from his line of sight, to read:
“What a striking evidence does this operation furnish of the wide difference between the extreme of savage and civilized life! A gentleman of Typee can bring up a numerous family of children, and give them all a highly respectable cannibal education, with infinitely less toil and anxiety than he expends in the simple process of striking a light; whilst a poor European artisan, who through the instrumentality of a lucifer performs the same operation in one second, is put to his wit’s end to provide for his starving offspring that food which the children of a Polynesian father, without troubling their parents, pluck from the branches of every tree around them.” Deprived from any real possibility of providing for a utopian offspring, I knew that my society would let me perish without giving me a slice of bread or a cup of water…
* The engine driving early Zionism was publicists. One of them, Herr Theodor Hertzl is considered a key figure in the foundation of the State of Israel. Another prominent one wrote under the pseudonym “Ahad HaAm,” which means “One of the People” in Hebrew. In 2006, I mocked this by using for a while the pseudonym “Ahad HaGolim,” “One of the Exiles.” Don’t ever underestimate the power of peaceful words.
** Often, historical events are sanitized to fit current political sensibilities. The original Santa Claus originated in Turkey, before it became a Muslim state. Umberto Eco’s The Name of the Rose provides astonishing views into Christian monasteries and libraries. Most people will place such organizations in Europe; yet, the world’s second largest collection of early codices and manuscripts is in Saint Catherine’s Monastery, in southern Sinai. Only the Vatican collection surpasses it.
No less important is the Orthodox Patriarchate of Jerusalem, which was established on the day of Pentecost with the descent of the Holy Spirit on the disciples of Jesus Christ (Acts 2:1-41), significantly predating the Holy See in the Vatican. It owns many properties in the Holy Land and it leads over half a million believers.
Roi Tov is a graduate—among others—of Tel Aviv University and the Weizmann Institute of Science. In addition to his memoir, Tov is published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Molecular Physics and other scientific journals. He won various travel writing and photography awards.
In his writings, he tries to reveal life in Israel as a Christian Israel Defense Force (IDF) officer—from human rights violations to the use of an extensive network of underground agents. He was recognized first as a refugee and subsequently as political prisoner of Bolivia.