Time to Boycott the Settlements

Marking products made in settlements allow world's consumers not to economically support settlements if they consider them villainous enterprises.

Last week I got a call from Channel 7 asking to interview me about the remarks of Prof. Yehuda "Judd" Ne'eman about civil war (Ne'eman had said there should be a civil war between the left and the settlers ). I didn't want to be interviewed by Channel 7, of all things, which was born in sin and takes its cues from Yesha rabbis.

I told them no. Does that mean I am boycotting them? I suppose it does. The Green Line for me is a red line. Since I stopped being an official person and am now a private one, I no longer have any obligations to settlements, whose establishment I opposed from the outset.

Because of that intransigent position of mine, I am soon to be punished by means of the so-called "boycott bill" - to be brought for its second and third readings tomorrow in the Knesset.

In the face of this legislative farce - in which it will be illegal to participate in anti-Israel boycotts - I have trouble feeling like a martyr. Don't make me laugh, coalition chairman MK Zeev Elkin and the initiator of this bill. I hereby call for a boycott of settlements and their products, and I expect rabbis from Israel and abroad to join me.

Because I am not a rabbi, I will not refuse to be questioned by police, like those rabbis Elkin recently supported. What have I done wrong that I have not been privileged to receive a summons? Only the deputy state prosecutor, Shai Nitzan, knows.

Soon we'll be able to boycott everything from lice eggs to oryx horns, from cottage cheese to popcorn at the movie snack bar. Everything, that is, but settlements.

Only the government will be able to promote or stop a boycott. After all, it was the government of Israel that agreed to the European Union demand to mark all settlement products. The purpose was in order to distinguish products from Israel from those from the settlements, and to allow the world's consumers not to economically support the settlements if they consider them - as I do - villainous enterprises.

Moreover, the government reiterated its obligation to differentiate when it signed the agreement to join the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, an agreement without which it would not have been accepted as a member. So what does it have to complain about, if not about itself, first of all?

And what the government can do, so can you. Scrutinize the labels of products and put them back on the shelf. Cottage cheese is indeed expensive, but the settlements cost much more and we will pay double and triple.

A pair of young settlers recently published a book entitled "Yesha is Here," which surveys the pleasures and treasures of the occupied territories: Small dairies with the taste of the old days, nice boutique wineries, gourmet restaurants, and bed and breakfasts with mikveh-saunas and a view.

The good times they enjoy in Naboth's vineyard are not our own. May my tongue cleave to the roof of my mouth if I take a slice or a sip; may my right hand lose its cunning if it lends itself to their cheesemakers and vintners, whom we herein recommend boycotting.