“I want to make victims of terror a thing of the past,” says Marc Provisor, head of security projects at the One Israel Fund (OIF). “We, at One Israel, are determined to prevent terror and prevent more Jewish victims.”
A tall order by anyone’s standards — especially here, in Judea and Samaria. But it’s not just empty rhetoric.
In 1994, a small-yet-effective organization arose in the US to assist quietly and unceremoniously in the humanitarian and security efforts of the Jewish towns, villages and cities throughout the heartland of Israel – Judea, Samaria, and the once-celebrated communities of Gush Katif in Gaza.
Since then, a branch of OIF had been developed in Israel with people at the helm who provided a bird’s eye view to the facts on the ground. People, such as Marc Provisor, a resident of Shiloh in Samaria, a one time Ravshatz for Shiloh (security chief), who now acts as head of security projects for One Israel Fund covering the Judea and Samaria region. The tactics are changing, and drastically. The strategy is no longer to wait for the Arab terrorists to infiltrate, but to prevent the infiltration completely, so that massacres such as the one that occurred to the Fogel family will never happen again.
I joined Marc over the course of two days traveling throughout Judea, seeing exactly how One Israel Fund puts their words into action.
Where government bureaucracy falters, OIF moves in to fill the gaps.
First stop: A training facility in Gush Etzion just east of Efrat. One Israel Fund is funding additional training at the facility for ravshatztim. A ravshatz is a security director in charge of all the emergency apparatus in his community. Each community has one. He is a civilian, but answers to the army. Should a community be under attack, it must have an immediate and effective response before the army can get there.
After observing the training, Marc asked all the ravshatzim for an update on their security needs. What was missing? What type of obstacles do they face? What is the threat factor? Did they need stronger searchlights, bulletproof vests, medical emergency kits, communication equipment, additional cameras for monitoring the perimeter of their communities?
I also learned that One Israel Fund is spearheading a self-defense training course for women throughout Judea and Samaria who have lately become targets of carjacking and kidnapping attempts. To date, thankfully, no one has been seriously hurt. One Israel Fund is determined that it remains that way.
In other words, as Marc says, “For each report on Arab terror, I’ll tell you what One Israel Fund is doing about it, and what it has already done. We get the problems, we put out the solutions.”
The idea is for Jews to be empowered with proper training, preventative measures, special equipment and a new mode of thinking. No More Jewish Victims!
Next stop, Tekoa, a mixed community of religious and secular Jews. We speak to Amitai, the ravshatz there and discuss the security needs of the community. We also visit a Talmud Torah in the community, which One Israel Fund also helped establish with donor funds. The staff of OIF is involved in all aspects on the ground, site work and hasbarah/public relations.
We traveled south on Route 60 and here and there we came by a sign prohibiting Israelis from driving on certain roads. Apartheid is alive and kicking, but it is targeted against the Jews.
Onward to Adura, just northeast of Hevron, another mixed community, where the majority are secular. There, we meet with Boaz and give him three bulletproof vests for his emergency response team. With a boyish smile, he thanks us and then insists on showing us a beautiful maayan, (spring) set in a wadi just west of the community. We go, and climb up a hill to the spring, and Boaz shows us remnants of the ancient aqueducts dating back to the time of the second Temple. While there, Boaz regales us with an incident that just occurred of how an OIF medical kit saved a local woman who, stung by a bee, went into anaphylactic shock. This episode followed one recently from the Shomron where a terror attempt was successfully thwarted thanks to the camera system provided by One Israel Fund.
We continued southward, and as we drove through the southern hills of Hevron, what was so obviously noticeable was that, save for the few Jewish communities in the area, there was no other sign of life. No Arab villages, no Arab agriculture. It was barren land and it was clear that the Jewish communities were not encroaching on Arab property.
Next, we reached Otniel. The deputy kabbat (civilian coordinator of security), Itzik, showed us an armored ambulance that needed to be refurbished. One Israel Fund is currently refurbishing a number of ambulances around Judea and Samaria. The heavy armor takes a toll on the vehicle and maintenance is costly. We travel several kilometers to the Moetza office for southern Hevron and speak to Dani. They need more fire-fighting equipment to battle fires set by arsons in the nearby forests.
A list of requirements is made which include security equipment, searchlights, and optical equipment manufactured in Israel. We hear about a farmer in the area whose herd of sheep was stolen by seven armed Arab infiltrators near Chavat Yatir.
On to Carmel. There we find a European funded Arab encampment deliberately set up at the foot of the community. Before this exercise in harassment, the Jewish community of Carmel enjoyed good relations with a small Arab community nearby. But, with the combined efforts of the EU and anarchists, money changing hands along the way, Arabs from Yatta (near Hevron) were brought to squat illegally at the very tip of Carmel, posing as Bedouins in order to create a threat to the security of the residents. Unfortunately, this type of activity is prevalent throughout Judea and Samaria. An assessment is made for security equipment in the area.
The philosophy of One Israel Fund is very simple. There is no honor in being a victim. With the right equipment, with the right training, and with the right frame of mind, Arab terror can be stopped and victims can be prevented. The Jewish people have enough memorials. We have zero tolerance for being killed, and we certainly have no interest in erecting another Museum of Tolerance.