Monday, May 7, 2012

What's A "West Bank outpost?"

As all public relations and spin experts know too well, you can score points or damage your opponents very easily just by choosing the right words.  The anti-Israel/Jewish rights in Eretz Yisrael team, both here and abroad, unfortunately, are real mavens in the negative word department.

Ha'aretz, the veteran, extreme Left Israeli newspaper can be used as a textbook.  I saw this headline today:
Israel's Supreme Court criticizes government for backtracking on demolition of West Bank outpost
It sounds rather awful and almost "unconstitutional" if you don't follow the code words and news.  As I continued reading, the article got stranger and stranger, inventing linguistic relationships and synonyms where none really existed. Here's the "subtitle:"
Government asks court to reconsider its pledge to demolish structures in the Ulpana neighborhood of Beit El.
And here's the opening of the article:
Israel's High Court justices sharply criticized the government on Sunday for not fulfilling its legal commitment to demolish a West Bank settlement.
During a hearing regarding the state's request to reconsider the demolition of illegally-built structures in the Ulpana neighborhood, which is part of the West Bank settlement of Beit El, Justice Uzi Fogelman said that "when the state claims it will do something, we do not imagine that it will not be done. There is respect between the branches."
The state asked the court last Friday to reconsider its ruling to evacuate and tear down five structures in Ulpana, which had been built on private Palestinian land. The state cited the difficult ramifications the move is likely to have for Beit El residents.
We have here a strange and totally inaccurate equation between:
  • outpost
  • neighborhood
  • settlement
  • structures
These four terms/words are described as "west bank" and "illegal."  Now, to be honest is a "structure" the same as a "settlement" or "outpost" or "neighborhood?" 

And Justice Uzi Fogelman who is quoted here demands that the government "respect" the court, but the court isn't respecting the government nor the actual laws.  The court is interpreting laws differently for Jews and Arabs, respecting Arab rights and word while questioning Jewish rights civil and religious.

Unfortunately, within Beit El itself, shades of pre-Disengagement, Rav Aviner has announced that the residents of the neighborhood shouldn't protest.  This is very disturbing.  We should never accept injustice, no matter who is the perpetrator. 

Not every "rabbinic opinion" must be followed.  In Pirkei Avot, Ethics of the Fathers, we're instructed to choose ourselves a rabbi/teacher.
Chapter 1:6. Joshua ben Perachyah and Nittai the Arbelite received the Torah from them. Joshua ben Perachyah said: Provide for yourself a teacher and get yourself a friend; and judge every man towards merit.
I always have a problem with "rabbinic announcements" which presume that I've asked that rabbi a question.  If/when one chooses a rabbi to whom a question will be asked, one is obligated to take the answer seriously.  But we're inundated with unrequested and unwanted pronouncements and instructions from a vast variety of rabbis and pseudo-experts, and we should just ignore them.

Unfortunately, Israeli Supreme Court Judges base too many decisions on their opinions and ideology, not on Law, neither Israeli nor Jewish.  And too many rabbis also make decisions and announcements based on fears and foreign ideologies, not on the Torah.  We're all human and make mistakes.  The final Judgement is G-d's.

And going back to my original question:

What's A "West Bank outpost?"

In all honesty, I think it's the fulfilment of the mitzvah, G-d given commandment to settle and populate the Land.  All cities, towns, villages no matter how large or small in the Land of Israel, including Tel Aviv, Tel Zion, Shiloh, Netivot, Rechallim and Chavat Gilad fulfilling that mtizvah.  They're all connected.  Weaken or delegitimize one and the chain of legitimacy breaks for all.

We, the Jewish People must unify, and only then will we be redeemed and live in true Peace!


Anonymous said...

as a long time regular haaretz reader, they often go waaay out there, sometimes to the point of hysteria. there hubris at times is shameless and unbelievable. it undermines their credibility.

Hadassa said...

These seem to be reasonable definitions, and the Ulpana neighborhood doesn't fit any of them.
a. A detachment of troops stationed at a distance from a main force to guard against surprise attacks.
b. The station occupied by such troops.
c. A usually small military base established in another country.
2. An outlying settlement.
From the American Heritage Dictionary
1. (Military) Military
a. a position stationed at a distance from the area occupied by a major formation
b. the troops assigned to such a position
2. an outlying settlement or position
3. a limit or frontier
From the Harper Collins dictionary.

How a neighborhood of multi-story apartment buildings in a well established community, which is not outlying, can be considered an outpost is beyond me. Calling a multi-story building a "structure" is also a linguistic exercise.

Anonymous said...

To anonymous,
Perhaps you should stop reading HaAretz?

Anonymous said...

nope, not gonna stop. as long as haaretz is an influential paper i will keep on reading it.

Anonymous said...

also, the way haaretz and some others lump all settlements over the green line as outposts is a little ridiculous: gilo, gush etzion, ramat shlomo, all outposts. gimme a break. not even the vast majority of leftists think that way.

Batya said...

And what about Jerusalem neighborhoods getting the same totaly inacurrate label?

NormanF said...

This has befallen the Jews because they have neither law nor justice in the land.

And when Jews fail to pursue both, innocent Jews get punished. As long the Jews rebel against G-d and refuse to follow the law without favor and to execute justice, they will pay the price.

People in communities like the Ulpana will suffer until the nation repents and comes to its senses.

Batya said...

Norman, you're writing in 3rd person. Who and what are you?

Anonymous said...

the closing of the post bothers me. you say jews must unify. yet you also do not want to compromise your position.
this tells me you just want everyone to do what you want.

Moriah said...

It's what G-d want.. what does G-d want? He want Jews to fight the enemy and live the Truth. We have to be like the Spies were supposed to be. We should accept the gift of the land and stop asking the nations if it's okay.

Batya said...

a, what's the problem? Certainly we shouldn't support the positions of those who want us destroyed. We must stop trying to please others and do what's best for the future of the country.

Moriah, amen

Neshama said...

Batty, I totally agree with: "Unfortunately, ... Rav Aviner has announced that the residents of the neighborhood shouldn't protest.  This is very disturbing.  We should never accept injustice, no matter who is the perpetrator."

Unfortunately, I believe there are a very few "Rabbis" alive today that we can really trust in this matter. The Baal Shem Tov told his disciples that it would be our own religious leaders that would prevent and hold back the Geula. Most people just want to get through each day's challenges. Hearing and listening to what G-d wants (al pi HaTorah) is really far from their consciousness.

I'm so disappointed in the govt, but full of Emuna that HaShem will work things out through the brave Israeli lovers of the Land.

Neshama said...

Batya, sorry, that google spellcheck slipped thru.

Batya said...

Neshama, yes, we must be strong in emunah. some people are too easily confused.