Israel Plays Incitement Card

In rejecting U.S.- Palestinian anti-incitement proposal, Steinitz defends Israel's strategic asset.

Yossi Sarid
Yossi Sarid
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Yossi Sarid
Yossi Sarid

This rooster has no mind of its own; it even imitates its master when it crows. If Prime Minister Netanyahu hadn’t already invented him, it might have been necessary to invent Yuval Steinitz now. The Minister for Strategic Affairs rejected an U.S. -Palestinian proposal to establish a committee to fight incitement: The government won't let go of its lifeline so easily.

Terror used to be the handy excuse. But then the terror faded – our security apparatus and theirs beat it back. And then “incitement” popped up just in time. If only they weren’t inciting against us – see, we want peace and they want war – all would be well and we could already be dividing things up. But there is no peace for inciters.

Ahmed is another victim of hopeless incitement; Esau starts despising Jacob in the womb, remember. He’s 30, let’s say, and works in the industrial zone, or maybe he’s a construction worker in a settlement and specializes in building swimming pools. All his life has been spent under foreign rule, for the occupation is older than he is.

This is his first childhood memory: In the middle of the night, they broke into his house. He remembers his father’s fright and his mother’s tears. But he was not afraid: What does a little boy have to fear from the world’s most moral soldiers? But then incitement came along and told him how he is supposed to hate, if he hadn’t been told already.

As a 6-year-old, he accompanied his father to work in the olive grove, until it was time for the harvest. On the way there, masked men threw rocks at them, and the soldiers stood by laughing. From afar he could see the dead trees that had been cut down. His father may have gritted his teeth and not said a word, but then came the incitement that ruined everything. If only his mind hadn’t been poisoned in school.

He cannot remember the day of his birth, of course, but he’s been told about it plenty of times: How his mother was trying to get to the hospital and how they were stopped at checkpoints. How she was having labor pains the whole way. Despite all that, he’s alive, because it was a baby and not a bomb that came from the womb. And the whole story would have ended just fine if those women from Machsom Watch hadn’t made such a fuss and just added fuel to the incitement machine.

Ahmed lives in the village of Khusra near Esh Kodesh, or in south Mount Hebron inside a firing zone. Fire, fire, on every hilltop, from Ofra to Beit El, from Itamar to Asahel – so much “El,” so little God. Who does John Kerry think he is to preach to Israel? And you don’t threaten a right-wing government in German.

Who knows better than Ahmed that without settlements, there are no factories; without stolen land, there is no work. And Kerry ought to know what happened to the slaves when they were set free. Whence will come help when they emerge from the house of slavery? Without a shirt on their back, or a roof over their head or a crust of bread to eat. Should they receive the good, but not the bad? And is the “price tag” imposed here and there in the Land of Israel really such a high price to pay for Zionist philanthropy? Don’t give those ungrateful inciters any hope.

No, it’s not the occupation that’s causing all the trouble, but the monster that's being made out of it. From the start it was meant to be enlightened, and it’s only because of incitement that the hanged man hasn’t grown used to the rope. Any child can understand this; it's what that teenage girl from Tivon tried to explain to her stupid teacher. Maybe now that the great philosophers of the right – Baruch Marzel, Michael Ben-Ari and Dudu Elharar – have had their say at the local community center, teachers will finally get around to teaching. Limor Livnat stood out this time for her absenteeism as a representative of the government, the Kahane movement and trash culture.

But a little proportion, please: Our sins look white as snow compared to the horrors in Syria and elsewhere in the neighborhood. It’s just a shame that incitement is messing everything up. If not for that, Bibi would surely bring salvation.

Minister of Strategic and Intelligence Affairs Yuval Steinitz, right, conferring with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.Credit: Daniel Bar-On

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