NEW YORK (Dec. 11)
In an unprecedented act of support for Jewish settlements in Judaea and Samaria, a major American city has “adopted” a Jewish village in the West Bank and announced plans to initiate a series of cultural and economic programs with that community.
Mayor Gerald McCann of Jersey City, N. J. officially proclaimed his city’s decision to “twin” with the settlement of Tekoah, a community affiliated with the Etzion bloc in the hills of Judaea, in an address to the Herut Forum, sponsored by the Herut Zionists of America.
In his formal announcement last Wednesday night, McCann said the people of Jersey City “admire the heroism of the pioneers who established Tekoah” and “adopt” that community as “our twin city with the hope and intention that we shall enjoy a mutually beneficial relationship built on the exchange and sharing of human resources in pursuit of the common values of America and Israel.”
The mayor noted that the regions of Judaea and Samaria “have constituted the patrimonial heartland of the Jewish people since Biblical days, and the most important cities in Jewish history are located there.” He cited Hebron, Shechem, Shiloh, and Jerusalem as being central for the Jewish people.
Mayor Robert Brown of Tekoah accepted McCann’s proclamation and invited him to visit the community. Brown related his village’s history from the Arab massacres in 1948, which drove Jews out of Gush Etzion, to its restoration and revival. Looking at the eight candles glowing on the Chanukah menorah, Brown said that the cruse of sacred oil which miraculously lasted the Maccabees for eight days was found in Tekoah.
SUPPORT FOR SETTLEMENT URGED
Rep. Mario Biaggi (D. NY) urged American support for Jewish settlements in Judaea and Samaria, calling them “vital to the survival of Israel.” Manhattan Borough President Andrew Stein also stated “We should be proud of the settlements in Judaea and Samaria. We should encourage them to continue. We must support the continued build-up of Judaea and Samaria.” New York State Democratic Assemblyman Dov Hikind declared: “We not only support the Jewish settlements going on now — we support the extension of those settlements and the building of new ones.”