The Jordan Valley settlements were created as a buffer against possible Arab attack from the east, though Israel security experts say that long range missiles, are a greater threats than tanks. This however has not stopped the expansion, a clear provocation, which may well jeopardise the peace treaty with Jordan. The event to expand Gitit, a community of 70 families was staged by the Land of Israel, a pro-settler lobby of 39 of the Israeli parliament 120 legislators
The Palestinians want to establish their state on the West Bank, Gaza and East Jerusalem, lands that Israel seized in 1967 and where more than 600,000 settlers have moved in and carved " osaes", subsidised and protected by the state of Israel at huge costs, which has to a great extent beggared the country, jacked the cost of living and deprived the other Israelis of much needed services.
In the past, Israel had depended on the politics of the USA and the guilt of Europe to defend its policy of building settlements on security grounds, but gradually this policy has been exposed as nothing more than a land grab and especially to deny the Palestinian people a country of their own in the land that had belonged to them.
The times are-a -changing and there is less willingness to turn a blind eye to this continued encroachment. Tough talk ( even comparisons to " apartheid" ) are beginning to percolate in Europe and America ( the Harper Govt continues in lockstep with Israel), and by three score and ten years ( after 1948), 2018, hopes will be replaced by reality. The Israeli "tail" wagging the "world" dog, will come to an end and the Palestinian people will have their country and not an open-air prison, to live in.
As of Jan.9, Lieberman, recently cleared of fraud charges announce his support for the Kerry plan. This will take some pressure from Netanyahu. Also on Jan.11, Ariel Sharon, one of the chief architect of settlements, a man adored by the Israeli as a hero-warrior but reviled by Palestinians as a murderer, the man who blasted people from their homes in Qibya, in which 42 houses were detonated killing 67 men, women and children; who built the security fence; who allowed the slaughter at Sabra and Shatilla and who turned Gaza into an open air prison, died.