Really, it’s a fairly innocuous song. But it raises the hackles of Israeli patriot-enforcers, who attempt to extract their pound of flesh from the poor victim. You cannot stray from the national consensus without paying a price. Solidarity is demanded. Deviance will be punished. Chances are Geffen will apologize and return to the straight and narrow Israeli path and never stray from it again.
It took a few days longer than I expected. But what I anticipated did indeed happen yesterday. Geffen, complaining about being labeled a drunk by a hard-drinking Russian defense minister and not being able to eat for a week, raised the white flag and surrendered (though not entirely):
“I merely wished to illustrate that just like our preoccupation with creating national heroes—from (Joseph) Trumpeldor to Moshe Dayan—the Palestinians are also entitled to create their own heroes,” Geffen added.
“My mistake was tacking Hannah and Anne, whom I profusely admire, onto the list. Bringing Anne Frank and Hannah Szenes into this story was a mistake, and I wholeheartedly apologize for it. I could have just as well have written Ahed Tamimi stood alongside Wonder Woman and Gal Gadot,” he elucidated.
…”I have been besieged for a week, I haven’t eaten anything in a week. I have no interest in opening up to the media, because they will always distort it, because they’re only looking for sensationalism and gossip,” he said.
“Once (Defense Minister Avigdor) Lieberman boycotted me, people called me an old drunkard, everybody boycotted me—there are two things to do. The first is bringing the occupation back to the headlines, because we’ve been occupying another people for the past fifty years, damn it. The second is bringing up our preoccupation with creating national heroes. The Palestinians are also allowed to create their own heroes,” Geffen said.
“Today, on International Holocaust Remembrance Day, I can tell you that it was a mistake, and I apologize for it, especially to those who were personally hurt (by the comparison),” he concluded.
To be clear, Geffen is no radical. He’s not an anti-Zionist. In fact, he’s a Zionist patriot though a dove of the “shooting and crying” variety. But this gives you a clear indication of the political suffocation in Israeli society. If you are a liberal Zionist who sticks his head slightly above the national consensus, the hammer will thunder down on you until you are the same height as everyone else.
Only a radical or true progressive whose principles couldn’t be upset by a few insults and communal ostracism would be able to withstand this assault and hold his head high. It’s why there are so few left inside Israel. It’s why so many of them leave. It’s why those outside are so much freer to reflect freely and independently on the true state of Israeli society. It’s why everyone in Israel goosesteps to the same marching tune. And yes, that was a deliberate echo of the rising tide of Nazism or Jewish fascism (whatever you wish to call it), which is where Israel is rapidly headed.
NOTE: A short note on the graphic art accompanying this post. My 16 year old artist son, Jonah, prepared this image for his high school studio art class. We are proud in so many ways!
[Comment deleted: off topic]
Don’t sound so bitter Gefilte. You don’t know how lucky you are.
Our governments do not give Iran preferential treatment in trade agreements, shield it from criticism in the international arena and let it share in enormous European scientific grants. They do not, year after year (and without complaining) spend our tax money to feed populations Iran has displaced. They do not have to see how Iran tramples international law, hides it nuclear arms, destroys humanitarian aid (such as solar panels donated to villages illegally occupied by Iran) without imposing sanctions. I could go on.
If our governments would let Iran walk all over them as they allow Israel to do, I assure you there would be a lot more interest in what Iran is up to among the population.
Not bitter, just a little tart
Gefilte, a tart lemon-horseradish sauce goes very well with ‘gefillte fisch’ (at least, that is what your name always reminds me of). 🙂
Why constantly refer Avigor Lieberman as a Russian. He was born in Moldova, which was then part of Soviet Union. Lieberman moved to Israel when he was 20 years old, that happened 40 years ago. Lieberman grew up as he himself has described in a very “self-confident” Jewish surounding with a Jewish upbringing. Moldova is limited to Romania and Ukraine, so describing Lieberman as a Russian is a bit strange. Also calling him as a hard-drinking Russian defense minister is simply propagandist namecalling, Avigor Lieberman is a hard-drinking Israeli Jewish defense minister. Lieberman describes: “Jews were 25 percent of the population of Kishinev [during the 1970s]… We were more affluent, better educated, and we showed it… The Jews of Moldova have this no-nonsense streak.”
The name Lieberman is a German (Yiddish) name. Same roots like those numerous “israelis” with family names ending to Stein.
By the way is Netanyahu a racist Polish corrupt prime minister (his father was born in Poland)? Or an Israeli? Is Trump an American or a German? Understandably many Americans would want to describe Trump as a German and atleast almost a Russian, but he is …
“It’s why everyone in Israel goosesteps to the same marching tune. And yes, that was a deliberate echo of the rising tide of Nazism..”
I remember the firestorm that erupted when the Dixie Chicks publicly opposed America’s entry into the Iraq War.
These Country Music performers were derided and boycotted and had to make a public apology for their remarks.