The Strategic Value of Samaria

By Michael Gottlieb
October 17, 2010

The Shomron (Samaria) is Israel's heartland region, located in the "West Bank". Among it's more important aspects is its strategic value to the state of Israel and her inhabitants. Read here why Samaria is MORE strategic and essential to Israel's security than the Golan Heights!

Highlands - whoever controls the Shomron mountain range also controls the low - lying regions on each side below. This means the heavily populated Gush Dan, Sharon and Carmel Coast regions (together, the coastal plain) to the west and the strategic Jordan Valley to the east would both be at the mercy of any foreign power that would hold the Shomron. The strategic value of the Shomron mountain range - the spine of which runs north-south for 70 kilometers and which overlooks to the west the majority of Israel's populated areas - is immense. One only needs to visit any of the Shomron settlements or outposts, look towards the sea and the strategic advantage of these highlands will become immediately obvious. One can easily imagine the threat posed to the millions of Israelis living below as well as to industry, infrastructure, military installations and Ben Gurion Int'l Airport if Israel would cede control of the Shomron to any hostile power, as envisioned in a "Two State Solution".

Territorial Depth - The pre-1967 borders (actually not a recognized border at all but merely the 1949 cease-fire line) that defined Israel for the first 19 years of its existence - the "Auschwitz" borders as Abba Eban once put it - are simply indefensible. Israel's coastal strip is home to well over half of Israel's Jewish population and most of her infrastructural and industrial base. Just 15 kilometers wide at its narrowest point, the pre-'67 lines (without the Shomron) represent an existential threat to the Jewish State. While a narrow waist may look good on a woman, it looks terrible on the map of a country as surrounded, threatened and embattled as Israel. The Shomron adds vital strategic depth to the country's outline and serves as a buffer zone for the crowded coastal strip to its west and for the Jerusalem area to its south.

For more information on the Strategic Value of Samaria, please click here:



Sun, 10/17/2010 - 10:21

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-1 points

the pre 1967 borders seemed pretty defensible in 1967.

But anyway lets say Israel NEEDS samaria. I badly need some money but that wouldnt be much of a defence when I was on trial for robbing a bank

Michael Gottlieb

Sun, 10/17/2010 - 13:41

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2 points

Actually, Israel suffered a lot until 1967 with cross border attacks and from the Golan, constant shelling on Galillee kibbutz farmers. And yes, Israel does need the Shomron. If given to the Arabs, how long will it take Hamas to dig in and use Samaria as a base of attack on Israel? And who backs up Hamas? Iran, of course. Think about it.

BTW, Israel robbed nobody - see this:

and this:


Sun, 10/17/2010 - 19:00

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0 points

Michael I doubt there is any possibility of dialogue. I want to talk about The State of Israel you, in your seeming race obsession want to talk about jews.

" The Torah says explicitly that the land of Israel is the G-d given patrimony of the jewish people. This is the strongest claim to the landand. On that basis alone the Shamron and all the rest of the land should rightfully be in their sole possession"

Michael you cant be serious.The land is Isreal's because the Torah tells us so. And the world is supposed to nod in grave compliant aquiescence ? ok say you dont give a chit what the world thinks , our god is greater than the world.


But I still remain totally puzzled about what the jewish people plan to do with the 5 million plus Arabs living west of the river ( approx the same number as jews living there )

Michael Gottlieb

Tue, 10/19/2010 - 11:53

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1 point


First off, 5 million Arabs is a gross exageration - please see "Demographic Threat" Myth section on this page:

Secondly, there are alternatives to the unworkable "Land for Peace" model, some of which are summarized here:

Lastly, and most importantly, if you don't see the direct, symbiotic relationship between "Israel" and "Jews", then I'm afraid you've missed the whole point. They are and always will be intertwined and one is not whole without the other. See "Jewish Rights to the Shomron" here:


Tue, 10/19/2010 - 12:03

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0 points

Michael, if you include Israel and the occupied territories, as wella s those areas still in effect controlled by Israel, there is a non-Jewish majority -- 5.5 million Jews and 6.5 million non-Jews (1.5 million in Israel proper, 1.5 million in Gaza and 3.5 million on the West Bank). Shomron central is indulging in a bit of wishful thinking.
If we want to keep Israel as a beacon for all Jews and as a "Jewish and Democratic state" as the wording of the loyalty law says, then Israel has to relinquish control of those areas which make it neither Jewish nor democratic.


Tue, 10/19/2010 - 13:03

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0 points

Good article, thanks Michael.

I think the Israeli government will have to make some very tough decisions over the next 12 months, with the possibility looming of Saleem Faayed unilaterally declaring independence next year. This is something I'm very worried about given the PA's inability (or unwillingness) to control their more violent and radical constituents without US assistance. No doubt Iran will be in there like a shot, as with Iraq, southern Lebanon and Gaza. That would be very bad for Israel and very bad for the UK and US.

How best to head off this danger is not an easy question to answer, but I hope it's something our leaders are giving a lot of thought to although I'm not optimistic.

It's also interesting that the number of non-Israelis living in Israel increases every time this subject comes up - a bit like the number of "refugees" from the war of independence!



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