What Now?

After all of the attempts and maneuvering to foil the expulsion and uprooting plot by political means have failed, the first cracks are starting to appear in the wall of the settlers and their defenders.

Atty. Elyakim Haetzni,

אליקים העצני
אליקים העצני
פלאש 90
After all of the attempts and maneuvering to foil the expulsion and uprooting plot by political means have failed, the first cracks are starting to appear in the wall of the settlers and their defenders.

It is no coincidence. Those who counted on Knesset members and ministers, those who believed that it was possible to score achievements by means of the political parties, may reach total despair in the face of the terrifying steamroller of Ariel Sharon, in the face of the bounty of temptations and briberies, in the face of the propaganda screened by the hostile media.

In contradistinction, those who from the beginning did not count on the political arena, and who even saw the abundance of resources expended on the various campaigns - from "settling in the hearts" to "a rift in the nation" - a meaningless waste of funds and manpower, are not now suffering a loss of spirit. Quite the opposite, those people are hopeful that the Judea, Samaria and Gaza Council will finally come to its senses and turn its full attention and resources to the actual struggle, which is to begin not on the day designated for the uprooting, but much earlier, when the scene of the crime against humanity is to be closed by military fiat. And indeed, the heads of the Judea, Samaria and Gaza Council did so announce at the time that the referendum was felled in the Knesset and the national budget was approved.

Lo and behold, just as Knesset members, yeshivas and families from around the country begin making their way into the region slated for uprooting, the Alfei Menashe mayor, Hisdai Eliezer, popped up in the news with two messages: opposition to bringing tens of thousands of people into the towns sentenced to destruction, out of fear of a civil war; and a personal willingness to take the place of any soldier who refuses to fulfill the expulsion order. That is what was publicized in the media, and as long as there is no denial, it must be assumed, sadly, that the reports are correct.

If so, dear Hisdai, if you rule out even passive resistance by the masses, as well as conscientious objection - as recommended to soldiers just a few years ago by Ariel Sharon - then what must be done? Or is it time to give up?

Hisadai lives "five minutes from Kfar Saba" and Sharon personally ordered that his town be included inside the security fence; so, it is fitting to say to him, "Do not judge your fellow man until you are in his position." Until now, we could be proud of the internal solidarity among the settlements in Judea, Samaria and Gaza - all for one and one for all. It seems we will have to get used to the idea of that front being broken, as well. And looking at it realistically, it was expected.

"Divide and conquer" is the known Roman maxim, and Sharon is implementing it like a master artist. Thus, he divided and dismembered the Likud; thus, he smashed the National Religious Party and the entire nationalist camp; and now, it seems, it's the turn of the Judea, Samaria and Gaza Council.

But not only. We are already hearing that he invited the leaders of Gush Katif for a compassionate reconciliation meeting. He may throw them some crumbs over and above the extortionate compensation in the Expulsion-Compensation Law. Perhaps, after his "ranch office" carried out a systematic character assassination against them, he will deign to once again refer to them as "salt of the earth" and "true pioneers".

Either way, such a meeting has the potential to weaken the hands of those fighting against the expulsion, to take the wind out of the sails of the opposition. According to media reports, three or four heads of town secretariats took the bait, and there you have it - "divide and conquer", even among the victims themselves.

Neither does what Sha'ul Goldstein, mayor of Gush Eztion, wrote in Ma'ariv (April 1) add to the internal morale of the camp. I quote: "It is unfortunate that the Minister for Public Security and the Chief of Police do not agree to my recommendation to arrange a meeting between the evacuees and the evacuators, so that the two sides understand that all of them are human beings."

What is meant by this? What will this meeting be, a mini group integration session, with refreshments and sing-alongs for the destroyers and the destroyed, the expellers and the expelled? How will the victims conduct their struggle after such an "integration" succeeds?

On all of the above, it must be said, in the prelude to the "Ode to Joy" of Beethoven's Ninth Symphony, "Oh friends, not these tones!" And I add: This is not the way to build a wall.

And seeing as it must be assumed that this is not all, and we have more unpleasant surprises waiting for us, let us say to ourselves some words of truth:

Gush Katif and Samaria are property of the nation, not privately held. With all due respect for the pioneers who built, planted and raised up, and in any event obtained houses and employment. But for houses and employment 150,000 people don't gather in Tel Aviv for a demonstration, and they don't drive the Knesset mad and call for bringing down the government. The pioneers of the Gaza coast and northern Samaria did not only build houses and private properties. They built a settlement enterprise. The houses and properties they built for themselves, the enterprise they built on behalf of the people and for it.

It is for this reason that the state expended a fortune on their infrastructure, public institutions and security - expenditures that would have been spared had they built their homes in Tel Aviv and their properties in the Sharon region. The pioneers of Hevron settled in Hevron because of the Machpela Cave - more accurately, in order to preserve the Machpela Cave for the people of Israel. All honor to them, and all honor to those who took upon themselves hardship and also suffered tragic, heart-wrenching human sacrifices in order to protect the Gaza coast and northern Samaria. All honor, but those properties are not theirs, and their residence in them does not entitle them - even them! - to give them up in the name of any group. They can give up their property and go quietly, but not as public representatives.

Neither the Gush Katif branch, nor the Judea, Samaria and Gaza Council, nor the mayor of Alfei Menashe has the authority to give up the struggle. They are supposed to serve it, they are not its masters. The masters are those tens of thousands whom Hisdai is telling not to come, and it must be assumed and hoped that they will not listen to him. We just finished reading in the Scroll of Esther the words of Mordechai to Esther: "Relief and rescue will come to the Jews from somewhere else."

Moreover, those who think the evil will not reach them are fooling themselves. Immediately after the expulsion "succeeds" - that is to say, the civil war, the war of the evacuators against the evacuees, of the expellers against the expellees, the uprooters against those being uprooted goes smoothly, quickly and elegantly - then it will be the turn of the entire hill country, between 80 to 100 thousand people. And after that, Shimon Peres and Sharon will divide Jerusalem. Therefore, all those tens of thousands should know that they are called upon this summer to physically prevent the destroyer from entering their very own gates, because after the fall of the 25 towns, God forbid, nothing will be able to any longer prevent the great flood, which will sweep away everything.

Another thing. This package called "Disengagement" includes horrendous security disasters, as Rabbi David Drukman is tirelessly warning, which endanger the lives of all the Jews of Eretz Yisrael, on both sides of the "Green Line". Now, say that it is not just the territory of the homeland that the tens of thousands will be defending, but the lives of the people everywhere in the country.

Now that the words of Hisdai were made public - and as stated, assumedly not denied - the Judea, Samaria and Gaza Council has a choice to make. We heard in the media its reaction that " we have pluralism", and that is true. The Judea, Samaria and Gaza Council cannot dictate the opinions of any mayor, and in a population of 260 - 270 thousand people, thank God, it is natural that there will be varying opinions. Because we truly are a democratic public. However, just as pluralism of ideas is natural and accepted, pluralism of decisions and actions is impossible and absurd.

The public institution is singular, not plural. It - the public body - can go only in one direction, and not in multiple, mutually contradictory directions simultaneously. And so, just like the Likud, the Judea, Samaria and Gaza Council will have to decide in these very coming days where it is headed. If towards a struggle, then unhesitatingly and with no compromises. And if towards double-speak, it would be better for them to be direct with themselves and admit explicitly: we are out of the game. This, in order not to mislead innocent people and not to waste valuable resources.

Just as the Likud can not run for election under two heads, one of Sharon and one of Uzi Landau, so, too, the Judea, Samaria and Gaza Council cannot set out to struggle without first deciding between Pinchas Wallerstein and Hisdai Eliezer. The Council owes as much to the huge population that trusted, and still trusts, it, so that the people will know ahead of time - and time is short! - how to select their leaders.




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