War Hero's Family May Lose Home

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JERUSALEM, Israel - The widow and two young children of Roi (pronounced Ro'ee) Klein, an Israeli hero of the Second Lebanon War in 2006, may be evicted from their home in the outpost of Hayovel, a community not authorized by the Israeli government.

Klein died in the battle of Bint Jbail in southern Lebanon on July 26, 2006.  He was the son of Holocaust survivors and was honored throughout Israel when citizens learned that he had fallen on a grenade to save the lives of other men in his unit. 

His last words were the Hebrew prayer, Shema Yisrael (Hear O Israel).  A memorial plaque for Klein stands in a park near his home.

The Obama adminstration is pressing hard for the Israeli government to dismantle unauthorized outposts such as Hayovel in Judea and Samaria (the West Bank). 

This past week, Israel's High Court of Justice said the government has four months to hold hearings for some residents living in 12 homes in Hayovel and six in another outpost, before the court carries out a previous order to demolish the homes.

The director-general of the Legal Forum for the Land of Israel, Nachi Eyal, has asked Defense Minister Ehud Barak to stop the demolition by legalizing the homes. 

"As someone who would be responsible for destroying the home of an Israeli hero, would your hand not tremble?" Eyal wrote.  Barak is one of Israel's most highly decorated former generals.

The activist group Peace Now filed the initial court action against the homes four years ago.  Spokesperson Hagit Ofran said that Klein was in an illegal home while he was still alive, and although his death is "unfortunate," it isn't relevant to the fact that the homes are illegal.

Source:  The Jerusalem Post

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