But his total failure to view the world, and ethics, from any perspective other than his own navel is perhaps best captured in the first paragraph.
They will go out into Jerusalem’s summer heat and march down Saladin Street toward the Old City walls. Fifty Palestinians, then 100, then 200 and 1,000 and 10,000. Marching and shouting “Istiqlal,” independence. Not because they support Ehud Barak’s new party, Atzmaut (the Hebrew word for independence ), but to get Israel out of the territories beyond the Green Line and establish a Palestinian state there. Just like the demonstrators in Tunisia got rid of Zine al-Abedine Ben Ali.
How will Israel react? Will it shoot the demonstrators and kill them before cameras from all over the world? A public relations disaster. Will it jail thousands for holding an unauthorized demonstration? Not practical. Will it blame the Palestinian Authority? Irrelevant. And what if the demonstrators keep marching, day after day, supported by international sympathy and all the international news media?
Indeed, one of Israel’s foremost analysts imagines how Israel will react to widespread, democratic protests in the West Bank. Of course, in the process, he ignores the weekly, unarmed protests that have been going on for years, organized by the Popular Struggle Coordination Committees. We can look to them if we care to learn exactly how Israel will respond: with arbitrary arrests, extraordinary violence, and endless propaganda to try and whitewash its crimes.
What’s the problem with regularly attacking unarmed demonstrators demanding the end to the theft of their land? “A public relations disaster,” Benn sagely informs us. What’s the main concern with arbitrarily detaining thousands of unarmed demonstrators? “Not practical.”
Are you f***king kidding? This inability to process elementary features of human ethics and democratic principles in the modern world is one of the most serious problems facing Aluf Benn specifically, and Israelis more generally. So accustomed are we to staring at our neuroses in our mirrors and television sets that we cannot fathom for a minute the one very good reason to not murder or arrest people with justification: it is morally reprehensible.
PS: Calling unarmed, popular demonstrations a “white intifada” is racist. Period.