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Ha'aretz: No Compassion for the evil ones

02/08/2004

Compassion is the mantra of a certain sector of the Israel and Jewish left. A Compassionate Listening project insists that we must have compassion for everyone in order to make peace. A laudable idea. Yitzhak Frankenthal, a wonderful human being and founder of the Bereaved Parents' Circle, has compassion for the Hamas 'freedom fighter' who killed his son. A wonderful idea in the best tradition of Semitic culture, though not exactly according to the dictates of eye-for-an-eye and tooth-for-a-tooth jurisprudence. Not everyone, however, deserves compassion it seems.

Who could be worse than Hamas terrorists, who can be so beyond redemption that they deserve no compassion? Settlers, according to Gideon Levy, (Undeserving of compassion) writing in Ha'aretz of February 6. do not deserve compassion. Levy writes:

However, the main reason the settlers do not deserve compassion is the immorality and the wickedness that are inherent in their deeds. This refers not just to the minority among them, who abused the
Palestinians and treated them with violence and cruelty. This refers to all the settlers, from the
first of them at Elon Moreh to the last of them at Rafah Yam, to moderates and extremists - all of
them bear responsibility for this terrible injustice.

...
All the settlers are tainted. If the Israeli society's sense of justice were more developed, the
settlers would have long since been condemned and ostracized. A healthy society must disgorge its
immoral elements.

All settlers are tainted and immoral. The prophet Levy decress, as of old "And thou shalt expunge the evil from within."

Down with the counter-revolutionaries. Death to left-deviationists. All who do not heed the truth according to Gideon Levy are damned!

Settlers are to be consigned to the inner circle of the inferno, and must suffer in eternity for their transgressions according to Ha'aretz. Like the Kulaks who died in the forced collectivization of the USSR, the settlers are consigned by Gideon Levy to the trash heap of history. There will be no salvation for them in Heaven as on Earth, and decent folk must turn their backs on children whose heads were bashed in with a rock, one-month old babies shot by snipers, schoolchildren killed on the way to school. It is, one supposes, the higher morality of historical necessity as a certain leader would have put it.

The very same people who will consider that Levy's ideas are Gospel truth, may be against capital punishment. Perhaps they are against inhumane treatment of lower animals. They inveigh against the Settler Rabbis who call for killing moderate political leaders. They are appalled by "collateral damage" which occurs when Israeli strikes against terrorists kill innocent Palestinians. For the "tainted and immoral" settlers, however, there must be no mercy. Bash their heads in, shoot them, murder their children while they are still young.

Gideon Levy, I have compassion for settlers. I have compassion even for Benjamin Kahanah and his family, murdered in an ambush. If I have compassion for Sheikh Yassin and Abdul Aziz Rantissi and for every other human being, I must have compassion for "our own" racists and warmongers as well. In war, it may be necessary even to kill people in self defense, but if we stop having compassion, we lose the spark of humanity. What are we, if we insist that children are tainted with the "original sin" of settlement? Don't you have compassion for the Americans who settled on the land of Native Americans in the United States? Are they "tainted?"

If the "peace camp" tries to excommunicate the Settlers, to condemn them as "tainted," then the "peace camp" itself will find itself ostracized, and justifiably so.

Because I have compassion for settlers, and because our government and our IDF can no longer defend them and their children where they are, and because they are excacerbating our conflict with the Palestinians, I want them to be evacuated to a safe place. When Israel evactuated Ataroth and Neve Ya'akov in 1948, it was not because the government hated "settlers," but because those settlements could not be defended. What we do, Gideon Levy, we must do out of love and necessity, because the settlers, and you and I, are all in the same boat here.

Ami Isseroff

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Original text copyright by the author and MidEastWeb for Coexistence, RA. Posted at MidEastWeb Middle East Web Log at http://www.mideastweb.org/log/archives/00000178.htm where your intelligent and constructive comments are welcome. Distributed by MEW Newslist. Subscribe by e-mail to mew-subscribe@yahoogroups.com. Please forward by email with this notice and link to and cite this article. Other uses by permission.

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