THE MASK SLIPS ON ISRAEL’S LEFT…P. DAVID HORNIK
The Mask Slips on Israelâ€™s Left
Posted By P. David Hornik
â€œI donâ€™t want to live in the country of Captain Eliraz Peretz or his mother.Â My consolations to the familyâ€¦a family of JihadistÂ Fascists, and donâ€™t dare let anyone say he was killed for my sake.â€Â
The above quote is from Uri Tuval , editor of the magazine section of Israelâ€™s left-wing daily Haaretz . He said it in a Facebook chat with other left-wing journalists, and even some members of his milieu were said to be dismayed at his words. This mini-scandal comes at a time when Haaretz is under attack for its central role  in the much larger scandal of the Anat Kam espionage affair.
Dishonoring the dead: Haaretz editor Uri Tuval.
Eliraz Peretz  was a 32-year-old Israeli soldier who was killed last month in a gunfight with terrorists in Gaza. His older brother Uriel died in combat in Lebanon in 1998. Miriam Peretz, the mother, was interviewed on Israeli TV after Elirazâ€™s death (it being customary in Israel to interview close relatives after the loss of soldiers). The Peretz family are observant Jews; Eliraz lived in the West Bank settlement of Eli.
To his credit, Tuval wrote a gracious apology  to the Peretz family. He noted that he too is a soldier and that his father was killed in the 1973 Yom Kippur War. He said he had â€œstated my personal opinion on the reality we face in a provocative manner, on a forum that I viewed as private,â€ and that â€œWe seem to disagree over the best way in which to build our national home.â€
But if Tuvalâ€™s words were indeed meant to be private, those of two other Israeli leftists, playwright Shmuel Hasfari and attorney Eldad Yaniv, were meant for as much public consumption as possible . Hasfari and Yaniv have self-published a manifesto called The National Left as a blue-and-white booklet timed for Israelâ€™s Independence Day (Monday evening and Tuesday). They got Tsomet Sfarim, Israelâ€™s largest bookstore chain, to offer it at the checkout counter  for a mere shekel ($0.27) along with a small blue-and-white flag.
Within days, however, Tsomet Sfarim announced that they had pulled the book because of complaints. As the company put it: â€œTsomet Sfarim is a chain for all of the people of Israel and has no political affiliation. It is never responsible for the content of the books that are distributed in its stores. Because we received many complaints that the book hurts the feelings of some of our customers, we decided to stop selling it.â€
The complaints centered on statements in the book that, again, focused on the bÃªte noire of the Leftâ€”â€œsettlers,â€ or Israelis, particularly religious, ideological ones, who live in Judea and Samaria (the West Bank).
For Hasfari and Yaniv these peopleâ€”known for their high rates of volunteering for the armyâ€™s officer corps and elite combat unitsâ€”are â€œextremist crazies and wackos [who] donâ€™t even pay [Palestinians who work in the settlements] minimum wage, because theyâ€™re just â€˜Aye-rabs.â€™â€ But even this kind of verbiage is too mild for Hasfari and Yaniv, who go on to say:
â€œThe settlers operate on a different type of fuel, which is called messianism. Their god appeared at once and defeated their enemies. After his mishap during the Holocaustâ€”he is back and mightier than everâ€¦.â€
No one realized that the â€œnew pioneersâ€ were possessed by demons of messianic madness. Think about the brainwashed minds, hypnotized zombies, gangs of horny teenagers forcing themselves on the countryâ€¦.â€
Viewing themselves as the pinnacle of enlightenment, it doesnâ€™t occur to Hasfari and Yaniv that their own words display bigotry of the crudest kind for which even mockery of God and the Holocaust is not going too far. From the fact that such words quickly ignited public protest they learnâ€”nothing, having already bragged that theyâ€™ll go on offering their manifesto for free at university campuses and other locales.
Meanwhile the settler community, which includes large numbers of secular and ultra-Orthodox Israelis along with the religious Zionists for whom Tuval, Hasfari, Yaniv and their ilk have such special loathing, has reached 300,000 and keeps growing. As Independence Day approaches, ideally the anti-settler Left would liberate itself from its failed dream of keeping the post-1967 lands Jew-free and learn to relate to this demographic with toleranceâ€”which might even include asking why, in a theoretical Palestinian state, its presence as a minority should be so unthinkable.
No chance. The Israeli Left has fallen on hard times, having captured 16 out of 120 Knesset seats in the 2009 elections. Socialism has faded and most Israelis have awoken from â€œpeaceâ€ dreams. Hatred, then, is too precious to give up up.
Article printed from FrontPage Magazine: http://frontpagemag.com
URL to article: http://frontpagemag.com/2010/04/19/the-mask-slips-on-israel%e2%80%99s-left/
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