Blank Ballot

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1. The colonization of the occupied territories is the cause for the continuation of the war, despite the mob of reporters and “analysts”: Haimovich, Avramovich, Zisovich, Yavin, Ya’ari, Kaspit, Daniel, and I apologize to those I left out.

2. According to a map published by “Peace Now”, the settlements expanded during the 18 Barak months more than they have during three years of Bibi.

3. Barak wants peace, as long as the colonization can continue (80% of the settlers cannot stop expanding and they will not stop expanding).

4. Sharon doesn’t want peace and has no intention to stop the colonization.

5. The Palestinians conceded in the negotiations 77 percent of the country. Israel was required to concede 23 percent of the same country. Barak insisted to bargain with machine guns, tanks and helicopters.

6. This isn’t a question of “settling for less than justice”, as some, who try to convince me to vote for chanceless-anyway-Barak, blabber. Dividing the country to 77 percent and 23 percent is not justice anyway. (I advise the supporters of chanceless-anyway-Barak to travel along the trans-Samaria highway, the new section that was opened by Barak, and to see how whole villages were disconnected from their surroundings, from their neighbors, and from the cities, by apartheid roadblocks).

7. The main difference between Sharon and chanceless-anyway-Barak is the difference between a war without national consensus (Sharon) and a war with national consensus (Barak). Blank ballots are a warning for both of them: We are fed up with you, army men. The more blank ballots, the less war.

8. If this was about a different candidate, say Peres, I would have voted for him, to prevent Sharon’s victory.

9. But nothing is better than the stubborn insistence on Barak’s chanceless candidacy, to teach us who is the clique that determines the spiritual identity of the “dovish left”. They knew – Sarid, Ran Cohen, A.B. Yehoshua, Amos Oz and their like — that the Arabs won’t vote for Barak. It never crossed their minds that they should consider the Arabs – even as “just voters” – when they appointed, in a blitz, chanceless-anyway-Barak as their candidate. They view the Arabs as dictate-acceptors, in Camp David as in these elections.

10. However, supporting the candidacy of chanceless-anyway-Barak teaches us another thing, which is a good reason to send this bunch out the window: they really don’t care – Barak, Sarid, Burg, Ramon – what will happen, “if, heavens forbid, Sharon will win”. Their panic is like a party platform, raison d’etre. Barak will be a minister in Sharon’s government, and Sarid, Burg, Ramon are preparing for the post-Barak leadership struggle. That is why they didn’t want Peres. Sharon, they care? They were thinking only about themselves, and they ask us to think about them. (In the meantime, while we are being lectured, hip hopped the “left writers” to dwell a little with Temple Mount, to compete again with the nationalistic right, but for us they leave Barak as the only choice against Sharon).

11. And we, the minority, the left, are gathered in a train station, collecting strength (integrity, trust in words, in our positions, in our allies). How much money we needed to collect for one newspaper ad against assassinations, or for three trucks of food to Hares or Hebron, and to collect signatures on petitions, and to run from one vigil to the next, and donate, and send email, and penetrate the media’s screen of silence, etc etc.. Ask: for what do we need to gather strength here? To get on our own train. Eventually, we will have to drive by ourselves, without a general and fifty bankers and industrialists.

12. And suddenly appears a band of adorned masters, with Amos Oz as a golden nose-ring (or a General’s wife’s necklace?), and Nissim Calderon as a toothpick, and it is begging of us to give it what we have collected with so much effort, the integrity, the words, the hundreds of people whom we have managed to save from the propaganda broadcasts of Avramovich and Haimovich. In short, our opposition power, the cover for the checks we wrote in the last months.

13. “Where are you going” we ask, and they shrug, the masters. “How many will you run over in our name?” they don’t reply. Efraim Sneh knows, he already ran over. And the driver of their train will be Ehud Barak, just that he doesn’t have a train. Why don’t you give him a train? “Shaul Mofaz and Bugi Ya’alon too?”, we ask (they called from Hague, soon they will finish with Karadowitz), “And Alik Ron?”, “Yes”, they say, Barak won’t drive the train anyway, they whisper the news, that “Temple Mount faithful from the left” already know, “there is no chance to win, but voting for him is a vote for the correctness of his route, since October: we turned every stone in the West Bank and Gaza. Now we need to call it peace.”

14. It’s time not to get raped on the train. Precisely because there are so few lines. After more than 350 killed Palestinians in three months, 35% of them minors, 41% of them were not involved in any demonstration, after 75% of the thousands of injured were hurt in the upper part of their bodies (hundreds will never walk again), after 49 ambulances (3/4 of their ambulance fleet) were destroyed while evacuating the injured, after all this don’t come to us and ask us to get lost with you. Go to hell, Barak supporters.

15. And what I will have to tell my young son is that 2001 was the first time I didn’t vote, because I was called to choose between two blood-stained generals. If you want to mock my notion of morality, talk to my son.

(Translated by Irit Katriel)

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