A group of Americans academics issued a call for the US and Europe to impose personal sanctions on Israeli politicians who promote the Israeli annexation of the West Bank and further settlement activity.
Scholars for Israel and Palestine (SIP) published a call, on the website of the anti-BDS organization, The Third Narrative, for punitive measures “on a cluster of Israeli political leaders and public figures who lead efforts to insure [sic] permanent Israeli occupation of the West Bank and to annex all or parts of it unilaterally in violation of international law.”
SIP points to four prominent Israeli figures who fit this description: Economy Minister and head of the Jewish Home party Naftali Bennett, Minister of Construction and Housing Uri Ariel from Jewish Home, Likud MK Moshe Feiglin, and the head of the settler movement of Gush Emunin “Amana” and former Jewish Underground member, Zeev (Zambish) Hever.
The four are singled out by SIP for pursuing “unjust, unlawful, and destructive policies in their most extreme and dangerous form.”
Those are some bad hombres, all right. A real pack of desperados—among whom I would be proud to count myself.
“Annexationist policies pursued by these four individuals, and others like them… slam the door not only on peacemaking at present but for the foreseeable future. It is not sufficient to reiterate calls for negotiations. It is equally and urgently imperative to oppose the occupation itself, and especially those policies that seek to make it permanent and irreversible. It is necessary for the U S and the EU to go beyond verbal protest… [and] take active measures to penalize lawbreakers,” the call read.
The real crime is in the writing. These guys are academics? That paragraph would get an F in Freshman Comp. “Annexationist”? Call it a word if you like; I call it the hideous spawn of Satan. “Foreseeable future” is a hackneyed phrase (and I know hackneyed phrases). The linking of “not sufficient” and “equally and urgently imperative” is illogical: how can something that is not enough be a rallying cry for action? And can they lose the passive voice—“it is” this and “it is” that? You got something to say, say it. Oh yeah, saying something is “permanent” pretty much covers “irreversible”; and “taking measures” doesn’t need “active” to modify it. I can’t imagine an inactive measure taken.
Who are these nincompoops?
The 20 signatories of the petition include distinguished professors from UCLA, Columbia, Syracuse, Stanford and Princeton. Among the mainly Jewish academics is the renowned political theorist Michael Walzer.
Now that we’ve discredited these academic jackals, let’s read the lurid crimes of which they accuse Moshe “The Masher” Feiglin et al of committing.
Bennett is cited for continuing to “press strongly for a policy of creeping annexation” and leading the struggle against the 2010 10-month settlement freeze when he was head of the Yesha Council. The freeze was called by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as an incentive to the Palestinians to negotiate. It failed.
Ariel is criticized for promoting a one-state solution, also known as a binational state, being a “consistent advocate of accelerated settlement building,” announcing construction tenders at inopportune times and calling for the building of the Third Temple on the Temple Mount.
Feiglin is blasted for his “straightforward and undisguised extremism” and for an “annexationist program [that] goes beyond Bennett’s,” while Hever is described as “one of the most persistent and influential organizers of settlement construction,” and is accused of building homes in outposts even the Israeli government considers illegal.
Our academic friends want to throw us in jail for the crime of housing starts. Which changes this scene from Witness to R-rated, if not X.
That’s me, the third Amish from the left, hiding out from the authorities for pursuing “unjust, unlawful, and destructive policies in their most extreme and dangerous form.” Approach with caution.