Five comments on Migron (ISRAEL HAYOM OP-ED) Dror Eydar 03/27/12)
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Chief Justice Asher Grunis
The extreme efforts to appoint Asher Grunis to the presidency of the
Supreme Court, following the Aharon Barak and Dorit Beinisch years,
are being presented as ridiculous in light of the recent High Court
of Justice ruling (rejecting a state-sponsored compromise and
enforcing the evacuation of the outpost of Migron by August). But
there is nothing ridiculous about it. Those who thought that Grunis
would supply rightist rulings essentially expected him to practice
the same kind of judicial activism as Barak and Beinisch – only from
But Grunis is not an activist. He is a formalist. On this issue he
had no choice but to rule the way he did, unless he was willing to go
the activist route and bend the law in accordance with his personal
views, the way Barak and Beinisch did.
The ruling to evacuate Migron was actually made long ago. The
question was enforcing it, or more accurately, not enforcing it. Let
me put the minds of the naysayers at ease: Despite expressions of
disappointment, when it comes to the court’s general direction, it
has embarked on a new path.
This was not a monumental decision – the deal that the state struck
with the residents of Migron remained intact – only the timetable
changed (the initial compromised stipulated an evacuation in 2015).
Next time, when Grunis rules on an issue that is a bit more
significant, that will actually affect the character of the Jewish
state, leftists will have to restrain their objections and repeat
their mantras: “rule of law” and “democracy” and the like.
The fact that most of the Migron residents belong to the generally
compliant religious Zionist camp has gone almost entirely unnoticed.
This particular stream of religious Zionism is characterized by the
adherence to the rule of the land even when contrary to their
Many Migron residents are students of Rabbi Zvi Yisrael Tau, an
educator, philosopher and exceptional intellectual. Following the
1995 assassination of Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin, Tau issued harsh
remarks on the atmosphere that preceded the murder. He warned of a
systematic societal collapse and urged internal soul-searching. He
changed the way his students studied. In Gush Katif (a Gaza
settlement bloc that was evacuated in 2005) he encouraged his
students not to resist the evacuation. The emphasis was always the
mission: He explained that they were on a mission on behalf of the
nation, and if the nation didn’t want the mission to be carried out,
then they should try to convince the nation, and if they failed they
had to accept their fate.
Did the Migron affair end up lumping these national Zionists with the
most extreme settlers who exact “price-tag” revenge on Palestinians?
What did it do to their weakening arguments in the face of opponents
who claim that “there is no one to talk to?” Has anyone thought about
Dear friends, the battle over the land of Israel is wider than the
question of the existence of one community or another. Sometimes a
finger must be sacrificed in order to save the entire body. Not to
mention the fact that in this particular case we are not even talking
about amputation – all that is required is relocation, not demolition.
The Palestinians are not going anywhere, and nor are we. We must
learn to live with them in peace. These days, the U.N. Human Rights
Council is convening, once again, to condemn Israel for what it sees
as “occupied territories” and what we see as our homeland and the
cradle of our nation. Though we are not required to comply with that
group of automatic hypocrites, we mustn’t give supporters of the
Human Rights Council any ammunition to use against us, especially
when compromise is possible.
Minister Without Portfolio Binyamin Ze’ev (Benny) Begin must be
commended for his loving and sympathetic mediation of the Migron
compromise. He was disgraced and humiliated by the leftist media over
it. Those who once hailed him as a democrat, the court’s gatekeeper
and the advocate of the rule of law were suddenly inciting against
him on Migron.
Begin sustained insults from the right side of the fence as well,
especially from the radical Right, which basically went about killing
the messenger instead of dealing with the real issue. Since their
loss in the 1992 elections (when Rabin was able to establish a
leftist coalition after more than a decade of the rule of the Right),
some in the radical Right haven’t learned their lesson: To them it’s
still all or nothing.
This is not the consensus, even among the residents of Judea and
Samaria. But the opponents of the settlement enterprise are just
waiting for remarks like that. They are also waiting with
anticipation for violent clashes between the army and the settlers –
Let’s go! Fight!
Channel 10 commentator Avishai Ben-Haim spoke Monday of the cruelty
displayed by leftist NGO Peace Now in acting to expel children and
families from their homes (the court’s decision to evacuate Migron
was based on a Peace Now petition arguing that the outpost had been
built on private Palestinian land). Ben-Haim was subjected to a
hailstorm of criticism by his colleagues over this remark. Though Ben-
Haim’s views represent the majority in Israel, in the media he is in
the minority of the minority. To our great shame. On the other hand,
Peace Now represents a negligible minority in the fringe of society,
but most journalists are sympathetic to its cause and its message.
Sigmund Freud spoke of two central desires, represented by Eros and
Thanatos -- sexuality vs. death; creation vs. destruction. The
analogy begs to be made: While the pioneers of our time are busily
building our nation and making it flourish, a small but loud and well-
connected minority is busy trying to demolish the life’s work of
these pioneers, which is in fact our own life’s work.
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