Sunday, October 4, 2015

West of Eden: Despair and Wanking

Pre-production publicity (2012) for the Will Blesch film Requiem for the Night, Israel's first full-length vampire feature, which seems not to have been shot.
While the rest of the world is panicking over the Syria situation as if it had suddenly blown up in their faces instead of undergoing a well-publicized disintegration over the past four years, and as they try, however ineptly, to do something about it, Israel seems to have come down to asking, "Is there any way we can make a profit out of this?" Thus the Times gives us a story (Jodi Rudoren) on
the aggressive development goal — 100,000 new residents across the Golan in five years — being promoted by Naftali Bennett, a senior Israeli minister and one of many Israeli leaders and thinkers seizing on the chaos in Syria to solidify Israel’s hold on the Golan.
—as if their main aim was to convince the world that all those anti-Semitic stereotypes are true.

The Golan Heights area on the Israeli-Syria border was conquered by Israel in the 1967 war and "annexed" in 1981; even the US refuses to recognize the annexation, but the international community tolerates it because of the territory's commanding strategic position looming over the Galilee: if it were to revert to Syria it would be the perfect place from which to invade Israel. But it's also an important water source for desert Israel, a lush land of fruit orchards (apples and cherries) and vineyards, and a bit of gorgeous mountain scenery drawing three million tourists a year.

Israel also uses it for the same kinds of strategic purposes as Syria would, as a staging ground for its activities, whatever they are, against the Assad government, and in support of guerillas allied to the al-Nusra Front, formerly known as al-Qa'eda—very frightening to the local Druze population, adherents of another of those Shi'a offshoots persecuted by murderous taqfiri militants. Now Bennett and other Israeli politicians, not just rightists, want to build up the Jewish population with the idea of creating "facts on the ground" that could somehow prompt the world to recognize the annexation.

Bennett says,
“I think we have an opportunity here, a rare opportunity, and I think it’s vital.”
I think they're delusional about the possibilities of recognition (it's the same problem as Russia's seizure of Crimea), but whatever.

I was especially amazed by the comment of one Golan kibbutz director:
“If a living organism does not have new blood all the time, he is going to die,” Mr. Bogdanovsky, 65, said as he showed off the kibbutz, which has a waiting list because it cannot build quickly enough.
That's incorrect. Living organisms make their own blood. It's the Undead who need to look out for new sources all the time.

Druze cherry pickers in Golan. Photo by Getty Images via BBC Magazine.
If you're reading the Times or listening to NPR, you're hearing plenty about a scary wave of violence directed by Arabs against Jewish Israelis in Israel and the West Bank, but you may not be hearing about the equally scary violence that may be provoking it, directed by Jewish Israelis against Arabs, as with the unexplained killing of a teenage girl, Hadil al-Hashlamoun, by IDF soldiers at a checkpoint in Hebron on September 22 (she's accused of trying to stab a soldier, , or the wider culture of violence growing within the settler movement to attack not only Arabs but also gay people, and by the Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked in her words calling for Palestinian genocide. Just for example.

You can say, and I certainly do say, that those Arabs who respond with violence are in the wrong, and that the best (and the most radical) response, as well as the tactically wisest and the one most likely to succeed, is the nonviolent one. But it should be understandable, at a time when Mahmoud Abbas himself, at 80, after waiting 22 years for the Oslo agreement to begin producing something, gives in to the counsel of despair.

Hadil al-Hashlamoun at the checkpoint, September 22. The official account says she was killed after attempting to stab a soldier, but the photograph, by Youth Against Settlements via Mondoweiss, shows a soldier taking aim at a moment when she is clearly not threatening anybody. For more, see Richard Silverstein.
The Lighter Side of Fascism

Heard about the market among Israeli women of childbearing age for IDF heroic sperm so that they can work toward the breeding of a Master Race? Apparently it's pretty brisk, and the soldiers are happy to oblige for $250 per wank (their pay is pretty terrible in any case). And then of course all the authority figures they see around them are wankers.

No comments:

Post a Comment