So what that the ultra-Orthodox don't share the burden of the occupation? At least they won't produce a deputy brigade commander who beats foreign peace activists, or a young woman who abuses Palestinians the same age as her parents, or a young man who delays a pregnant Palestinian woman at a checkpoint.
Judging by their dress and lifestyle, these Haredim seem to be part of a dark age, but the people who cast a dark shadow over another nation are the people who lead a perfectly secular lifestyle and whose hearts beat to the tempo of human dignity. The Haredim squeeze a few cents out of the state and a holy war is waged against them, but not a word is heard against those who steal others' land.
The Haredim have already been marked, and if a protest movement takes place this summer, it will be against them, and of course the Arabs. Why? Because they "don't share the burden," the burden of occupation and settlements. In the hearts of the reservists in the "suckers' tent," no anger burns over the settlements that are drying up the state coffers; they don't care that the occupation is costing billions. And they're not disturbed that the state's resources are divided among a handful of tycoons.
After all, a proud sucker will never ask a question like why the occupation is continuing. What about the Arab League initiative that proposes normal relations with Israel? Why does Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu refuse to talk about borders? So when the time comes, there they are, their heads held high, to keep the embers of the occupation burning so that, heaven forbid, it shouldn't die out.
Dear suckers, if you want the occupation to continue, enjoy yourselves! But you'll have to pay for the pleasure. Why do you want to place the burden of the occupation on the shoulders of people who aren't interested in it? Let those who want to build an empire pay.
To be practical, I suggest that two kinds of ID card be issued: one for people who want to be citizens of the empire, the other for people who are satisfied with a normal country. Those who choose the modest ID card won't have to pay the price of the occupation - some $9 billion, around $1,175 per person. And that's just for the past year, according to economist Shir Hever. They also won't pay for dismantling the settlements when the time comes, or for the compensation that will be paid to the West Bank settlers who are evacuated. Please send the bill to the citizens of the empire.
The Arabs and the Haredim do the suckers a favor by not enlisting in the army. If another 40 percent of the population took part in "the burden," it would be reasonable to assume that the suckers would now be patrolling the alleyways of Damascus, and maybe also the outskirts of Giza, where they would be clashing with the "pyramid-top youth" who had set up another illegal outpost.
And now to many people's favorite punching bag - the Arabs. The Arabs, at least, bear their own burden, even though they also suffer the burden of discrimination and racism. Missing here are good intentions. Instead of a dialogue with the leaders of the Arab community, the Ivri Committee has been imposed; it's discussing national service. This 17-member panel doesn't include one Arab - and this national service falls under a branch of the Defense Ministry. We haven't yet mentioned the birds of prey in the Knesset, where not one day passes without another racist bill.
Enlisting the Arabs has for many years been a political tool for the government. Gideon Eshet writes in Yedioth Ahronoth that in the 1950s, Defense Minister "Pinhas Lavon had a plan. He would conscript the Arabs, and when they refused, so he believed, he would be able to send them over the borders. The call-up orders were sent and the Arabs appeared at the recruiting offices."
In 2005, in an attempt to emasculate the Or Committee's recommendations, the term "national service" was introduced. The first attempt failed but the second is gaining momentum. In any case, the suckers can calm down. Instead of stirring up a hornet's nest, let them begin looking in the right places - not where there are Arabs and Haredim. Because being a sucker isn't a decree from above.
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