إسرائيل الأربعين المفقودة
أنجلوس تايمز - 5/6/2007
منذ حرب الأيام الستة و مستقبل
إسرائيل مستهلك بمشاكل
lost 40 years
the Six-Day War, the country's future has been consumed
by the problems of the occupation.
Meir Shalev, MEIR SHALEV is the author of "A
Pigeon and a Boy," to be published in the U.S. in
October, and a columnist for the Israeli daily Yediot
Aharonot. This was translated from Hebrew by Evan
— I WAS BORN during the 1948 war, which we Israelis
refer to as the War of Independence. At the time, we
were fighting against the Palestinians and the Arab
nations, who refused to accept the U.N. Partition Plan
that would have divided Palestine into two states for
mother conceived me in Jerusalem, which was, at the
time, under siege. The city was being bombarded, and
there was no water, no food, no medicine. My mother's
brother was a fighter whose job it was to escort supply
convoys attempting to enter the city. In my mother's
eighth month of pregnancy, my uncle managed to smuggle
her out through the hills and brought her to the village
where she had been born, in the Jezreel Valley. A month
later, the three of us were reunited in the same
hospital: She and I were in the maternity ward while he
fought for his life after a piece of shrapnel ripped out
his eye and lodged deep in his skull.
years later, during the Six-Day War of 1967, which
started on June 5, it was my turn to fight. I took part
in the battles for the Golan Heights. Several weeks
after the war ended, I was given a short furlough and
went home, to Jerusalem. My father led us on a tour of
the places that had been off-limits to us until that
time: the Western Wall, the Jewish Quarter of the Old
City, the Temple Mount, his father's grave on the Mount
of Olives. He was quite overcome with emotion.
Throughout my childhood he had taken us for walks along
the border fence that had cut through the city, showing
us these sites from afar. Now the fence had been removed.
next day, we toured the West Bank to see the places
where the heroes of the Bible had roamed. I'd always
loved my father's stories and was very moved by his
excitement, but I told him that this victory of ours
would work against us in the future. "We've bit off
something that will choke us," is what I said. I
remember the exact words because they made my father so
angry that I was only too happy to return to my army
unit the next morning.
months later, I was gravely wounded and hospitalized in
the same place where I'd been born.
a result of my injury, I was released from the army.
Over the years, my friends did their reserve duty in the
Gaza Strip and in Judea and Samaria, as did their
children, who, like my own, grew up and went into the
army. I learned from them about what was taking place in
those places, and that there was a price to pay for
assuming ownership of the holy sites, for establishing
settlements, for creating a Greater Land of Israel.
years have passed since the Six-Day War. My parents are
no longer alive. I can no longer argue about politics
with my father. The truth is, we put a stop to that
while he was still alive. We discovered that it is was
much more pleasant and interesting to argue about
years have passed, and Israel has indeed choked. The
country is busy dealing with one matter: the occupation
— the territories, the Palestinians, terror, holy
sites, the establishment and evacuation of settlements.
Forty years have passed, and Israel has neglected
everything that the Israel of 1948 wished to occupy
itself with: education, research, welfare, health.
years" is not just some round number. It is a
period with traditional meaning, a number through which
God tends to emphasize his will. The flood continued for
40 days and 40 nights; Moses remained on Mt. Sinai for
40 days and 40 nights; the Jewish people wandered the
desert for 40 years; Jesus sequestered himself there for
40 days. It seems to me that God is sick of religious
figures and generals and politicians who claim to speak
in his voice. He is taking advantage of this
mathematical moment and letting everyone know that now
is the time to settle up.
years after that great victory, he is showing us that it
is not only the Palestinians who are paying the price of
occupation and settlement; the Israelis are as well.
years, and Israel is forced to decide which is more
important: the lives of its sons and daughters or the
graves of its ancestors.
years of an army whose main occupation has been manning
roadblocks, detaining suspects, assassinating enemies
and guarding settlements have brought us to the high
level of arrogance and low level of capability that the
Israeli Defense Forces displayed during last year's war
years of deceitful, villainous dealing in the occupied
territories have caused corruption to seep into our own
politics and society.
years, and we must come to terms with the fact that
Israel cannot cultivate democracy at home and apartheid
in the backyard.
years, and for the first time one can hear voices
doubting whether the Jewish state will be around for
was born during the War of Independence, which was
foisted on us by our neighbors who refused to accept the
partition of Palestine and thereby brought defeat and
disaster upon themselves. I fought in the Six-Day War,
which led Israelis to err in a similar fashion.
Extremism, fanaticism, stupidity, being drunk with
power, the bad mixture of politics and religion — all
these have caused us to make unwise decisions.
settlements continue to grow and expand; terror is
getting stronger, hatreds deepening. But the principle
introduced 60 years ago is as right now as it was then:
partition. Two nations, two states. Israel must give up
the land it took over in 1967. The Palestinians must
relinquish lands they lost in 1948. But neither side has
leaders with the courage and the ability and the
preeminence to make big decisions.
another year both Israel and I will turn 60. Neither of
us is young anymore, but I am pleased to report that I
look far better. Israel cannot hear anymore, doesn't see
well, can't really grasp matters or understand clearly.
Worst of all, Israel refuses to undergo the operation
that would return it to good health.
لهذه المقالات لا يعني أنها
تعبر عن وجهة نظر المركز كلياً
من حق الزائر الكريم أن ينقل وأن ينشر كل ما يعجبه من موقعنا . معزواً إلينا ، أو غير معزو .ـ