Monday, April 12, 2010

Shulamit Aloni Compares Settlers to Nazis

During our family Shabbat dinner this past Friday night, there was an urgent knock at the door. I hoped it wasn't a medical related emergency, since we've had to many of those the past few weeks. Our neighbor looked very upset and he ran up to our dinner table.

"Is everything OK?" I asked?

He replied angrily, "No, this is simply disgusting. You MUST put this on your blog!"

Relieved that this wasn't anything life-threatening, I asked him to explain.

"Today I went to a book store, "Tzomet HaSefarim" and there was someone there at the checkout line asking if I wanted to buy an Israeli Flag large magnet for my car...for only one Shekel.

I asked what the catch is, and he said, "no catch"...and he showed me a shrink wrapped flag magnet, and on the magnetic side there was a dark blue piece of paper.

Since its a great deal, and who wouldn't want a flag magnet for their car for this coming Yom HaShoah, Yom HaZikaron, Yom Ha'Atzmaut, I bought it. Before Shabbat, I opened up the shrink wrap to put the magnet on my fridge, and the dark blue piece of paper turned out to be a pamphlet.

The pamphlet advertised itself as from the "Nationalistic Leftists" of Israel. Some of the quotes from it include:

"The settlers are the lords of the land, hardly pioneers. They never planted a tree or built a house. It’s the Ahmeds that did all that for them. For years the settlers have been forcing us to build the future Palestinian land – at our expense."

"The settlers operate on a different type of fuel, which is called messianism. Their god appeared at once and defeated their enemies. After his mishap during the Holocaust – he is back and mightier than ever. They graduated from yeshiva high schools and stormed Judea, Samaria and Gaza with unconquerable messianic passion.

"No one realized that the 'new pioneers' were possessed by demons of messianic madness. Think about the brainwashed minds, hypnotized zombies, gangs of horny teenagers forcing themselves on the country. The young generation of settlers forgot what it's like to be a Zionist."

"A rightist is conservative. A yapper. Polemicist. Resistor. Especially in the face of change. A leftist is a revolutionist. Practical. Leads the way, dares and is victorious. The Right believes that if we continue having the upper hand, we will be saved by the heavens. The Left believes that we must redeem ourselves, by ourselves. That is the reason that Zionism is leftist."

My friend was livid. This is what I paid for? Its outright propaganda -- had I known this is what my shekel was going for, I never would have paid it, even for the magnet. And its being sold as a simple "flag magnet." This must either be clearly advertised as a leftist campaign, or not sold at all at the bookstore."

My friend wasn't the only one offended, as hundreds of angry consumers contacted the "Tzomet Hasefarim" bookstore expressing their outrage at being duped into buying this. One person said it was like paying for a flag magnet, and getting Jews for Jesus propaganda along with it.

Responding to consumer outrage, the Tzomet HaSefarim bookstore, stopped the sale of this magnet/pamphlet package, and prevented the "Nationalist Leftist" activists from selling their wares.

The bookstore chain's spokesperson said, "Tzomet Sfarim is a chain for all of the people of Israel and has no political affiliation. It is never responsible for the content of the books that are distributed in its stores. Because we received many complaints that the book hurts the feelings of some of our customers, we decided to stop selling it." (ynet)

In response, Shulamit Aloni slammed the "settlers" for destroying democracy in preventing the sale of this pamphlet. Of course, in her world, it could only be "settlers" who complained...not a regular right wing person who doesn't live "over the green line".

In an interview with ynet, Aloni said;
"The settlers rule the land. The government supports them so much; it's a disgrace," Aloni told Ynet Sunday night. Tzomet Sfarim succumbed to the pressure because everyone is afraid of the settlers. They are savages, racists and hate all those who do not support them.

"This country is not democratic anymore. The fact that there are political parties and elections – there are political parties and elections in Iran also. There are zealots in Iran and there are crazy zealots here. The police must deal with the settler threats. We cannot surrender to them," she said.

However, ynet sanitized the English edition. The Hebrew version of the story adds quite a bit more, and quotes Aloni as follows:

אין לי אף מילה טובה. מה שאני שומעת מעורר בי חלחלה. זה יום השואה היום, ומה עשו בשואה? הרסו בתים ושרפו ספרים. הם לא אהבו יהודים, והמתנחלים לא אוהבים את מי שחושב אחרת.

"I don't have a good word [to say about the settlers]. What I hear makes me nauseous. Today is Yom HaShoah, Holocaust Remembrance Day. And what did they do in the Holocaust? They destroyed homes. They burned books. They didn't like Jews, and the settlers don't like those who think differently than they do."

Thank you Shulamit Aloni for letting us know what you really think...it's just a shame that your words didn't appear in print in English for the rest of the world to hear your enlightened venom this Yom HaShoah.


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21 comments:

Nachum said...

Aloni, like many leftists, can't seem to grasp the distinction between government and private activity. Had the government banned the pamphlet, that would be a true threat to democracy. But Tzomet is a private chain and can do what it pleases. There are plenty of left-wing bookstores that'll sell that garbage if people want it.

The pamphlet happens to make no sense: After going on and on about how violent and revolutionary the settlers are, it then lauds leftists for being "revolutionary." Odd, but then the left has always been a lot more fascists (and fascists a lot more left-wing) than they'd admit.

Anonymous said...

Why are you politicizing the Shoa and using it as an excuse to attack the left?

NormanF said...

This is a country where leftists hold key positions of power. There influence has been felt and will continue to be felt for a long time to come. Reports of a de facto "building freeze" in Jerusalem is but one example of this. And Shulamit Aloni's anger towards the National Religious and rightist parts of the population reveals the Israeli Left is far more enraged at fellow Jews than it is with Arabs who are trying to undermine the Jewish State. There is no such thing as "national unity," when the Jews disagree on some very important issues. And who really knows what tomorrow will bring in Israel.

Gee a Moron said...

A minor technical point:

It's "Tzomet Sefarim" not "Tzomet Hasefarim" (צומת ספרים). Their website, courtesey of a Google search, is:
http://www.booknetshop.co.il/

[Shall I attribute any significance to the word verification that I am being asked to type being "cancer"? I would be content to ask Google to refrain from using emotionally-laden words in their authentication challenges.]

Gee a Moron said...

I'm finding the extereme leftist hate literature just as offensive as rightist hate literature even towards Arabs. Most people, whatever their political views, that I know do not call Arabs by the derogatory term "Ahmeds".

Tim said...

Jameel, Why are you bashing leftists on a day that's supposed to unify the Jewish people?

Hitler couldnt care less if Jews were leftwing, rightwing, gay settlers or orthodox -- he killed them all, and here you inflaming passions against leftists.

First NIF, then Anat Kam, and now Shulamit Aloni.

Jameel @ The Muqata said...

Tim: Actually, I didn't say anything invective towards Aloni, or Left wingers at all.

It was Aloni who compared settlers to Nazis today.

Do you think her slander is appropriate (today, or any day?)

the artist not known as turquoise toucan said...

i am very disappointed and offended by this post. why are you calling the authors of the pamphlets "leftists"? i take it you've spoken to the authors and are basing your conclusion on proven facts? and even if they are leftists, you still have no proof that their politics was their motivation for writing and distributing the pamphlet. what, is everything politics to you? why do you have to present this as a left/right political issue?

also, you were very not nice to shulamit aloni. (and you have no absolute proof that she's a leftist either. and even if she is, she's totally "mainstream".) that's just "sinat chinam". you should say nice things about her instead, especially on yom hashoa. why do you have to talk about nazis? (yes, i know you were quoting her, but still.) you settlers should stop painting aloni as your "enemy", and instead show some unity and solidarity with her.

if you keep writing posts like this, people like shulamit aloni and the people who wrote the pamphlet might stop reading your blog.

realRightWinger said...

I (realRightWinger) was almost conned into buying this as well when I was at Tsomet Sefarim last Friday - I thought how nice !! - a car magnet (although I wondered how long it would last in our neighborhood - it would probably be stolen overnight) - but then when I started leafing thru the pamphlet - and saw it was leftist literature so decided to drop it and save the money (1 NIS !) -
BTW - this obviously costs more than 1 NIS to print / distribute - is the NIF behind this as well ?

Haaretz Fan said...

It is a Danger To Democracy™ to refrain from duping people into buying antisemitic anti-Settler hate literature by making them think they're buying an Israeli flag magnet. Clearly, We Have Learned Nothing From The Rabin Assassination™.

Since Tzomet Sefarim has joined the dark forces of The Enemies of Democracy™, another way must be found to force these pamphlets into every Israeli home. I suggest that the army send soldiers around to personally deliver a copy to every home in the country. (Let's force the Hesderniks to do it, that should be fun.) Since the meaning of Democracy™ is to Obey Orders, they'll have no choice.

Yonatan said...

why are you calling the authors of the pamphlets "leftists"?

Maybe because the pamphlet advertised itself as from the "Nationalistic Leftists" of Israel.

Seriously - do people even take the time to read things or do you just fly off the handle after the 1st sentence?

tanka tt said...

Yonatan: Maybe because the pamphlet advertised itself as from the "Nationalistic Leftists" of Israel.

so what? it's possible that might just be a figure of speech or something. you have no absolute proof.

and besides, even if they are leftists, i'm sure they're nice, mainstream, everyday people, just like the folks who demonstrate in sheikh jarrah.

NormanF said...

Tanka, only Jews with a guilt complex could feel bad about Jews living in Jerusalem's Shimon Ha Tzaddik neighborhood. If the Jews have been torturing/killing the Arabs there its not made the rounds. I've wondered what exactly the "Piece Now" folks have against peaceful Arab-Jewish co-existence.

Daniel said...

Hitler couldnt care less if Jews were leftwing, rightwing, gay settlers or orthodox -- he killed them all, and here you inflaming passions against leftists.

Secular lefties were usually profiles for the kapo roles. rarely were frummies chose

The back of the hill said...

The Nazi comparison has taken on ludicrous proportions.

Last Thursday, counterprotesting against QUIT ("Queers Undermining Israeli Terrorism"), I was called a Nazi.

What was QUIT upset about. Well, there's a series of films and performances going on here in San Francisco highlighting Gays and Lesbians in Israel - Israel being one of the few countries in the Middle East that doesn't actually lynch homosexuals - and QUIT insists that even mentioning that fact in a favourable way "pinkwashes" Israeli apartheid and aggression toward the people of Gaza, with whom they feel great sympathy and concommity of purpose and ideals.

So of course counterprotesting QUIT's opposition to the favourable treatment of gays in Israel makes one a Nazi. QED.

Apparently it ALSO makes me a Jewish racist brutally exploiting Mexicans. I have not been able to figure out yet how that works, so I cannot even begin to explain it.

M said...

She is an ugly woman with an ugly personality.

Shira said...

Why is all the emphasis on the garbage inside the pamphlet? Let them sell it but like a normal book - people can leaf through it and decide if they want it. Or if it's shrink-wrapped then put a descriptive title on the front.

Why didn't Tzomet Sefarim make that offer?

Jameel @ The Muqata said...

Shira: No one would buy it if it were sold "normally"...and it was all shrink wrapped to disguise it's real purpose.

BTW - I doubt Tzomet Sefarim is making that much off this book -- its making at most, 1 NIS per book...(assuming the national leftists are giving their trash away for free).

There's a reason they didn't want anyone to know in advance what they were hawking.

MAOZ said...

Did Yonatan and NormanF miss something about tanka's rant? Or was I totally off in understanding tanka's rant as tongue-in-cheek?

Ah, if only "/sarc" tags didn't go invisible sometimes!

Shira said...

Jameel - I know but if only Tzomet Sefarim would offer them to sell it unwrapped (a) it would point out *why* people are so offended and (b) it would make the leftists look stupid because no one would actually buy it even for 5 ag.

Yes, yes - wishful thinking. How many years do you have to live here before your brain stops doing that??

Gee a Moron said...

You can read the book, for free, in English:
http://thelede.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/04/12/israeli-stores-stop-selling-book-that-denounces-settlers/?hp

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