Five Simpleton Questions

Holocaust consciousness is a part of every combat pilot's gear, alongside the flak jacket, helmet and maps, and must also be in the kitbag of every soldier at a checkpoint.

1. Has the endless talk in Israel about the attack on Iran achieved its objective?

Absolutely. Some people were skeptical. They thought it was just plain madness to keep prancing about in front of the Iranian target, and to brashly position ourselves front and center for the strike until they noticed us. Some among us even began to doubt the wisdom of Ehud Barak. But they can all eat their hats now: This week Operation Mushroom Sprout totally proved itself when an Iranian official announced that there was no point waiting for the Zionist attack, and that Iran had better act first and execute a preemptive attack against Israel. Needless to say, the cries of joy heard down in the "the Pit" in the Kirya after that declaration reverberated all the way up to the roof of the Defense Ministry, or maybe it was vice versa. Because Barak - in an intricate but brilliant reduction-deduction process - had managed to maneuver us to the desired destination: We can no longer avoid being dragged, with no choice, into yet another unavoidable war of choice.

Illustration: Israeli leaders riding on an Iranian missile - Eran Wolkowski
Eran Wolkowski

2. Is it true that the new air force commander comes equipped with - in addition to his other golden qualities, which were listed this week in the newspapers - "a highly developed Holocaust consciousness"?

Affirmative. In today's Israel you may be able to become a professor without a matriculation certificate, or become the prime minister's bureau chief without a drop of sense in your head, but without a "Holocaust consciousness" you won't get anywhere in this country. Even the job of tea-server in the Histadrut would be out of reach. All the more so when we're talking a senior command position in the military. Particularly given "today's challenges" (see below ). Thus, not only does Maj. Gen. Amir Eshel come equipped with a powerful Holocaust consciousness, like some of his predecessors, but they say he was actually the one who came up with the idea of the air force flyby at Auschwitz.

Scholars theorize that the roots of this phenomenon date back to the days of Prime Minister Menachem Begin, who was the first to note the uncanny similarity between Yasser Arafat's command headquarters in Beirut and Hitler's bunker in Berlin. Since then, Arafat was replaced by Sheikh Yassin, who was replaced by Saddam Hussein, who was replaced by Ahmadinejad, who might be replaced by Erdogan. But the role of Hitler and the bunker remains permanently filled. At any rate, ever since then, "highly developed Holocaust consciousness" has become (as a recent public opinion survey also confirmed ) part of the "standard equipment" of every Jew in the Land of Israel - only each time it's aimed, like a Patriot missile battery, at a different part of the heavens. Thus Holocaust consciousness nowadays is a part of every combat pilot's gear, alongside the flak jacket, helmet and maps, and it must also be present in the kitbag of every soldier at a checkpoint.

3. Is there any truth to the rumor that a secret order is in effect that obligates all television analysts and presenters to allude to and to draw a connection - either directly or in the most convoluted possible way - between every scrap of information and an attack on Iran?

Again, the answer is affirmative. And the story goes like this: One winter night, about a decade ago, an unusual volume of vehicle and helicopter traffic was noted in the Biriya forest in the Upper Galilee. Illuminated by the landing lights, a group of TV commentators and presenters, all blindfolded, was lowered from three helicopters. They were taken into one of the cellars of the fortress there, and were made to swear - on a Bible and a gun - that they would make every effort to insert into their remarks allusions to a future strike on Iran. They were told this was vital in order to make the proper impression on the ayatollahs, Europe, America and Masouda from Sderot. They received detailed instructions on how to gaze into the camera with "an invisible wink" and were also supplied with what would come to be known as the "Teaser Document" (a useful pocket-sized manual of code language ) to help plant multilayered hints in the most basic texts, so as to give Operation Mushroom Sprout a boost. Here are a few examples:

* "It appears that also at this critical juncture - or perhaps because of it? - an Iranian movie is competing with an Israeli movie for the Oscar for Best Foreign Film. Considering today's challenges, could this be the start of the confrontation?

* "Of all today's challenges that the Israel Defense Forces will have to contend with, filling the position of the new Army Radio commander is no trivial matter. Our reporter will expand upon the significance of this dramatic appointment, considering the forthcoming conflict."

* "The new parking arrangements in Tel Aviv were announced at a press conference today by Mayor Ron Huldai - a former pilot, we must remember, who knows a thing or two about long-term planning, including how to refuel in transit."

4. Is there any connection between the Natan Eshel affair and Maj. Gen. Eshel's appointment as air force commander?

No. There is no connection whatsoever. Although blogger Yaakov ("Yakish," also known as Joe ) Darbouka - an Iranian of Galician descent who lives in Pardes Katz, Wisconsin - would beg to differ. He reveals today on his blog that the password for activating surface-to-surface missiles under the command of Major-Disaster Jack ("Cuba" ) Gingrich is Esh-El (meaning "God's fire" ), and that this secret password is known to just two senior figures in Israel: One is said to "be ready to put everything on the table, for better or worse," and the other is said to have "filmed everything from under the table, for better or worse" (wink-wink, nod-nod ). In fact, this password is so secret that the two men themselves do not know that the simultaneous utterance of their names - just like the two identical keys that must be turned simultaneously to open the Israeli prime minister's makeup kit - is what will immediately launch Operation God's Fire.

The blogger advises early-warning aficionados to check what Natan "Esh-El" was really doing during the "vacation" which, it turns out, was imposed upon him only after heavy pressure from NATO. The blogger also finds evidence of the imminent strike in the comments of MK Faina Kirschenbaum about "elections before the year is out" as made at the "Shabbat Culture Event" in Ramat Hasharon.

5. Is the obsessive coverage of the "shaking of the twin babies" affair, which has been going on week after week and diverting attention from every other topic, just random?

No. As part of the signals that Israel is sending to both Ayatollah Khamenei and Europe, this is designed to illustrate the supreme value that this country places on every Jewish human life, even that of a tiny infant. Our enemies - who are not stupid - shall thus realize what sort of act of revenge they are in for, at least according to the latest Shalit Index, which stands at 1,027 Arabs per single Israeli soldier. It's also a subtle wink directed at the Israeli public by Ehud Barak: According to the above index, for 500 Israeli human pieces, whose deduction from the inventory Barak has already figured into the equation, we will get all of the following - and for a bargain price yet: 513,500 dead enemy chunks, the enjoyment of letting loose our military operations lust after having been pent up for the past three years, as well as first-refusal rights for another operation just two years from now. Worth it, wouldn't you say?