and do a spot of reporting.
The town was founded in 1990, just over the Green Line, to offer unexpensive housing to large Haredi families from Jerusalem and Bnei Brak. It was originally called Kiryat Sefer. At the end of 2008 it had a population of more than 41,000, making it the largest settlement on the West Bank. The weekly birthrate is 45, or 2,500 babies annually, which makes for a lot of children. A lot of bycicles, too.The annual growth rate is 9.5%, which means that in the six months since Obama demanded that Israel stop building on the West Bank, the population of Modi'in Illit as grown by about 2,000 people. This requires additional housing. The town is wedged between the Green Line to its west, and the security fence on its east; in the long run the growth will have to be westward since there will be no construction beyond the fence. In essence, Modi'in Illit is a border town. Israel may swap its equivalent for land elsewhere, but I don't see any scenario in which the town will be evacuated. Pretending otherwise will not help peace negotiations,which will by definition be based upon false assumptions.