The ABC of Hilltop Settlements

Turns out that a real Zionist today is Israeli A, who gives money to Israeli B to persuade Israeli C not to take possession of land.

I asked a linguistics specialist whether Migron, the name of the illegal outpost in the territories that was evacuated last week, comes from migraine. His categorical answer - no. I also asked whether he happened to know where Migron is located on the map. Because obviously we are talking about some hill or other. But go figure where precisely. Anyway, it was and is no longer.

Thus the mini-drama on that arid hillock played out this week, before the vast majority of Israel's population residing within the Green Line. I am also willing to bet that the ratings for that mini-drama were not high. The stimulus bar of the average Israeli viewer is not easy to leap over. And the Migron drama lacked blood, tears, spitting and babies being torn from their mothers' arms. Surprisingly - and to our great dramatic disappointment - the individuals evicted did not even hurl the magic word "Nazis!" at the evicting police officers.

What is going on here? After all, Migron - and likewise the rest of the illegal outposts - is the product of that faction within the settler population that can be termed anarchist: that is, those opposed to the bourgeois house-holding in which the settlement movement has sunk, and who want to renew the initial passion that the settlements had at the start. And now it turns out that they, too - the rebels - are growing tired of their revolutionary fervor and willingness to cause a ruckus.

The day after the eviction, the newspapers were filled with words of grievance against the state which, instead of punishing these lawbreakers, rewarded them with a generous grant for alternative housing which came from, yet again, the taxpayer's pocket.

For my part, not only do I not take umbrage at this, but I am instead glad to see that the vision of Zionism has not lost its freshness. Let's see now: In the past it was customary to say that a real Zionist is Jew A, who gives money to Jew B to persuade Jew C to take possession of the land. What's changed today? Hardly anything. A real Zionist today is Israeli A, who gives money to Israeli B to persuade Israeli C to sit quietly and not take possession of the land.

In other words, there is nothing new under the sun. We could translate into simple words the ideological struggle being waged in the country between the settlers and their supporters, and those called "the sane Zionists." It would turn out to be nothing but a variation on a chronic flaw in the functioning of the thyroid gland, something this people has been carrying around in recent generations. This condition causes phenomena of severe hyperactivity along with phenomena of severe lethargy. And if there is a pill that controls the national hormone function, I am in favor of introducing it into the basket of subsidized medical services, even if it is expensive and its scientific name is moneymoneymoney.

No doubt: The national consensus today does not conceal its loathing of the phenomena of extreme hyperactivity that hurt Israel's good name and its principles as a country of law. But if I may be allowed, I wish to remind you of something I heard from the mouth of the great writer and educator S. Yizhar: "It is not the right's arm that is too long, but rather the left's arm that is too short."

In other words, the same measure of severity or loathing used to judge the excessive activism of the settlers should also be applied to the extreme lethargy of those for whom Mount Rothschild was the only hill they fought for recently. And whose velvet revolution basically imitated precisely the methods of the settlers, when they set up an illegal outpost in a country that didn't belong to them. And indeed, it was enough to treat them with medicine called wordswordswords.

I can already hear the reader of these lines crying out: "You cheap demagogue! How dare you compare the two?" So, I will quickly clarify: Yes. In both cases - that of the hyperactive-settler right, and of the normative urban nebekh - we are talking about two sides of the same aggression: one active, the other passive.

The outpost settlers raid some hill that belongs to some Palestinian, in order to annoy the world. The passive Tel Avivian nebekh manages, at most, to raid the Rothschild encampment, but his haplessness, and his lack of political awareness, and his indifference in the face of the collapse of the institutions that were supposed to support his liberal values (yes, I am referring to print journalism and, more specifically, to the newspaper in which these lines appear ) - these arouse in me far greater nausea.

For Migron is a pimple that grew on a hill far away. But the indifference is a large abscess that is growing right on our head, and will soon be the size of the head. And it will be impossible to remove without taking the whole head with it.

"More cheap demagogy!" I hear my loyal reader saying. "He wants to be pitied, he is shaking in his boots because the newspaper he works for is having difficulties." True, I answer him. But kindly remember that if I am not here to rouse your consciousness with my cheap demagogy, you will fall asleep in your easy chair. And when you awaken, you will find that all around you, on the right and the left, are hills and hills with pimples on them.

Pinch yourself to make sure you're not dreaming, and indeed it won't be a dream but reality. And you will shout like a madman: "Where are you, press? Where have you gone just when we need you?" And the echo will answer you from the hills, "Need you need you need you."