The Judea and Samaria settlements are especially important as they create a Jewish society conforming to the Torah. Not in the sense of religious observance—many settlers are traditionalist-to-atheist—but as the very society envisioned by the lawgiver. Only in small communities can people practice “love your neighbor,” because they know their neighbors. Culturally homogeneous villages provide immense moral comfort, which stems from the realization that the others are really like you and you know what to expect of them. People who know each other are not even afraid of pervasive gun ownership.

Small communities shaped normal people because they existed in normal, culturally homogeneous networks of neighbors. In cities, people don’t have neighbors, and so they try to forge unnatural alliances: they cling to their children (Torah prescribes only children’s respect for parents, rather than vice versa) and ideological movements. The state also killed neighbor-networks by centralized welfare and police security: people no longer depend on neighbors for last-resort protection and daily cooperation. The disintegration of traditional values and proven evolutionary habits makes urban dwellers uneasy and contributes to hysteria. Cities have developed a new, unsustainable type of humans: rootless ones. They rejected their evolutionary baggage and appeared without beneficial traits. They have no true neighbors to cooperate with, and thus grow uncooperative, confrontational, and aggressive—and given to aggressive behavior and ideologies. Small towns produce wonderful people, whether shtetl Jews or Port Said’s Arabs, but cities are full of ugly characters. Pressed against each other in hi-rise buildings and faced with traffic jams, urban dwellers develop mental illnesses. Constantly encountering non-cooperative others with wildly different views and values, city residents live in unease, haunted by suppressed xenophobia. They have to abandon all values to accommodate strangers. The only alternative is suffering daily confrontations with their cultural opposites, who evolution has taught them are likely hostile. They abandon values and opinions rather than enduring daily clashes.

Urbanization takes an especially heavy toll on Jews, whose psyche is already damaged by millennia of living among enemies. Not only do the Jews abandon their traditional values, but they also hate those who did not; those whose very existence reminds them of their troubled origin. Too many Diaspora Jews feel a subconscious need to bury Israel, a painful reminder of their unwelcome Jewishness.

We need not fear international boycotts or economic crises; they are good for Jews. We need the return to the land. In the time the Torah was given, there were farmers, nomads, and artisans, but the Torah imagines Jews as farmers. Scores of commandments can only be practiced by a land-bound people. In small towns and villages we may not earn enough for new cars, but there are things far more important: the crisp, clear, starry sky, quiet, and the time to think. In the villages of Judea we watch the same stars that Abraham looked at when he addressed the Almighty. In Shiloh we sit on the same stones where our ancestors celebrated Pesach centuries before they built the Temple. Only people who see the land rather than asphalt, who sweat on this land rather than Eilat beaches, can feel true patriotic attachment to it.

Jews can only return to normality in Judea and Samaria.