The Migron outpost now must be evacuated by August 1, the High Court injudiciously ruled Sunday, overturning a wise government compromise that would have allowed an orderly move of the settlement to Psagot over the coming three years. Chaval. (Too bad).
Particularly sad about this turn of events is the old, hateful rhetoric that has been let out of the bottle by the Supreme Court debate. Left-wing rabble rousers like Zahava Galon of Meretz, Yariv Oppenheimer of Peace Now, and hundreds of benighted academics who published a repulsive, sinister anti-Migron petition in the newspaper Haaretz on Sunday, have peppered the public debate with settler-hating epithets like “land robbers,” “lawbreakers,” “violators” and “corrupt manipulators.”
Listening to some of these spokesmen on radio yesterday and today you could feel the hatred of anything related to settlers, settlements and the Netanyahu government oozing from every pore of their oh-so-democratically-and-legally-pure bodies. There was no sympathy expressed whatsoever for the plight of the Migron residents – who settled there with full government support and in the knowledge that the State of Israel had title to the land.
Instead, I smelled a whiff of pogrom. I could almost hear them sharpening their pitchforks and spinning the wool for torches with which impale the settlers of Migron and burn their homes to the ground. I could sense their glee at the imminent spectacle of mounted special-forces policemen charging at settler women and children and bashing their heads with batons, as happened at Amona.
Only those whose hearts are closed, and whose who ideological hatreds have overwhelmed their factual judgment, can speak and think this way. The issue for them, of course, is not the upholding of Supreme Court decisions or the rule of law – although that is what they swear the current controversy is all about. Neither is the issue Palestinian land rights or Palestinian national rights, to which they also swear fealty. Not really.
Rather, the issue for the ideological haters that came out of the woodwork this week is the uprooting of the settlement movement life’s work; the destruction of the power of the ideological right-wing, especially the national religious right wing. Tearing down an icon of the Yesha Council – that is what this is all about.
Just after the disengagement from Gaza, I accompanied a group of Canadian newspaper editors on a tour of Israel, and we met with, among other, the man who was at the time the editor-in-chief of Haaretz, David Landau. Landau explained to the Canadian journalists why he though the unilateral withdrawal from Gaza was a good thing. It’s not because we freed the Palestinians from Israeli occupation, he said. And it’s not because the Israeli army will no longer have to patrol the alleyways of Jibalya refugee camp, he said.
The reason why, he, David Landau, thought that the disengagement from Gaza was a great and historic thing was “because we tore down the settlements of the national religious public and we crushed the political power of Religious Zionism!” he thundered.
I heard some of that thunder and animus again this week in the execrations of hard-left spokesmen celebrating their “victory” over Migron. Chaval.