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The Inmates R Running the Asylum & Starting a War


How come, you may ask. Well… let me tell you: It is taking place as I write this in a very important, well-established institution in a country with a history going back to the beginning of time as we know it, and as we learn about it. The inmates who took control of this asylum—I’ll refer to them from now on as Camp A, a definition needed for the sake of explanation—decided that they don’t like some other inmates who are currently also institutionalized there, we’ll call them Camp B. They don’t like them for various reasons, mainly because they don’t like their skin-tone color, their religion, or their history of arrival at the asylum in the first place. Furthermore, Camp A insists that they were the first to be institutionalized in that asylum, so they have all the rights to govern it as they please.

For a while prior, things were relatively all right between these two camps, and were moving forward in the right direction due to leaders with progressive, forward-thinking ideas on how to manage the asylum. But then a group of zealots within Camp A decided to rebel against these leaders, since they didn’t like the way they were leading the institution, especially so because they felt themselves superior to the inmates of Camp B, insisting very fervently that their God is the only one there is. Unfortunately, other inmates in Camp A didn’t take that group seriously, and even used to ridicule them. As a result, they were able to act unimpededly. Their first act was ‘brilliant,’ and took the other people in their camp entirely by surprise. What they did was, they sent one of their most extreme, insane believers to infiltrate the sane people in their peace group gathering and, as they sang about peace and tranquility, he was able to shoot and kill their leader.

The sane inmates of Camp A were so traumatized by this assassination, were so heartbroken and upset that—you can’t blame them, really, or can you?—they were too numb and therefore unable to react properly to the threat that the extremists among them posed to the entire institution. To be fair to the sane people, one must admit, even admire to a degree their wish to concentrate on their work, families, education, and even high-tech endeavors for the benefit and prosperity of the whole asylum. Some of them were released or escaped the asylum altogether. At the same time, though, the zealots took control and put in charge a new leader for Camp A. They were so successful because they chose a leader who on the face of it was actually one of the sane people, in terms of his background and education. He had charisma in abundance and gave good speeches, so they chose him to replace the murdered leader.

Consequently, the insane inmates continued to multiply—it was part of their modus operandi, which they called Mitzva from ancient times—and they continued to take more and more control of the asylum’s day-to-day operations, and deprive the citizens of Camp B of more and more of their rights and property. While they were doing all that, the sane people in their camp were mostly apathetic, or simply continued with their daily lives. Of course, because they made more money in the asylum various professions and businesses they were supporting and financing the insane people of their camp, who continue to just study and preach about their God, and prepare for war. They knew that war was coming because that was their raison d’etre—i.e. to deprive and throw out all the inmates of Camp B who didn’t believe in their God Almighty, and to prevent others from realizing what in fact they were doing. Indeed, the sane people in their camp didn’t realize that a war was coming and therefore were unprepared for it when it arrived.

But now it has arrived. And while within Camp A the insane people are not that many in numbers more than the sane people, because of their understanding of ‘realpolitik’ and their preparation for war, they are able to institute new laws which basically mandate that everything that their leader and his ministers choose to do, it automatically becomes the law of the land. I mean the asylum, of course. Needless to say, the sane people don’t like it, not at all, and try hard to rebel against it but it’s too late. Too much power is secured now in the hands of the insane inmates, and they can subdue, imprison—even kill, when they see fit—or expel from the asylum all those sensible people in Camp A who are rebelling against them.

So now, with all the power in their hands, they’re instituting an autocratic regime, their leader is becoming a dictator, and they’re capturing easily every aspect of the asylum lives. With the place under their control, with their God being declared the only one, they turn their attention to their real enemy: Camp B. Ruthlessly, savagely, they’re either killing or expelling most of the people from Camp B. Those who remain are enslaved, and become servants of the ruling class of Camp A. For a short while, it seems, all is going well with these insane inmates controlling and running the asylum. But then one day…

I woke up.

* The ‘Leave a Comment’ link is the last tag below, in blue.


The Death of Israel We Knew and Loved


It shouldn’t surprise us that the Israel we knew and loved—courageous, pioneered, moral, sane, enlightened, democratic, secular, creative; a light if not for all the nations than certainly to the Jewish people the world over—is no longer so. We’ve all participated, one way or the other, in its slow demise. In its transformation from a small country striving for peace and security, yearning to live and prosper in dignity, to a religiously nationalistic, militaristically obsessed occupier and abuser of other people’s lands and lives. From a socialist, enlightened survivor state of the pogroms and the Holocaust to a religiously fanatic, Apartheid-like state.

That the Two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is dead, declared so here in this blog some ten years ago, is no longer in doubt. You can kiss it goodbye and welcome the coming annexation, de facto or semi-de facto, thanks to the new government forming as we speak in Israel, led by Netanyahu, Ben Gvir and Smotrich (learn these new names, my friends, you’ll hear them plenty soon), who had actively participated in the lighting of the flames that brought about the assassination of Prime Minister Rabin; and with his death, any chance for the Two-state solution—including also the sane, democratic, secular Israel—to survive.

The new Israeli government coming our way is not an aberration. It has been long in the making, fermenting and progressing along with the occupation. Which, aside from the wrongs it has inflicted on the Palestinian people, has corrupted the soul of Israel, the Jewish nation—a willing, active participant in the process, don’t think otherwise—with it. The crisis coming upon us is not just an Israeli crisis; i.e. the triumph of religion over secularism, the triumph of the Talmud and Torah studies over science and art education, the triumph of Jewishness over democratic values; it is also the crisis and chasm between the Israeli state and the Jewish diaspora.

The last government, a unique and brave attempt to prevent all that from happening, and defend the state’s democratic values and the rule of law, had collapsed after only a year and a half in power. Then they lost the elections, and Netanyahu—in a Jerusalem court almost daily on charges of bribery and breach of trust—had won. He and his rightwing extremist political bloc of cohorts (some of them convicted and charged criminals) will facilitate the demise of the rule of law, the courts’ system and the high court, all in order to free him from jail even if the verdict will mandate so. And once the rule of law has collapsed, democracy and civility will follow through. Hence the beginning of the demise of Israel taking shape now in front of our very eyes.

In case you suspect I’m overreacting, here are some snippets from newspapers and news outlets, both in Israel and in America, of the last few days:  

“Four European envoys to the UN pulled out of a visit to the Western Wall led by Israeli Ambassador to the UN Gilad Erdan after receiving a directive from Brussels not to participate given that the EU doesn’t recognize Israeli sovereignty over East Jerusalem.” Times Of Israel

“Finance Minister-designate Bezalel Smotrich is dragging Israel’s ultra-Orthodox politicians along with him as he outlines his plans for religious coercion in secular areas of life.” Haaretz

“Likud MK Tally Gotliv said Sunday that she was working with members of the expected incoming government to oust Attorney General Gali Baharav-Miara, claiming Israel’s top prosecutor was “not suitable” for the job.” TOI

“Smotrich did not receive the Defense Ministry but he did get a win. He and his radical bloc members, who have championed once fringe ideas like the annexation of the West Bank, the expulsion of ‘disloyal Arabs,’ and the establishment of new protocols enabling Israeli soldiers to shoot at Palestinian stone throwers, will have unprecedented control over the West Bank at a time of spiraling tensions.” Washington Post.

“Israel is doomed to become a binational state in which most Arabs do not have the right to vote and most Jews are Haredim unable and unwilling to function in modern society. Secular people will flee, violence will explode, and pariah status will only end when the Palestinians take over.” Opinion in TOI

There are plenty more but you get the point. Even if I see things in too darker tones, seeing it this way demonstrates the watershed moment we find ourselves in. Israel is changing, dramatically so, on a course of self-destruction.

* The ‘Leave a Comment’ link is the last tag below, in blue.

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