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My Statement - Impressions and Expressions of Ijon
March 12th, 2004
12:20 pm

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My Statement
Here's the statement I made at my IDF trial. Below it are a few comments about it. Hebrew (sorry).

הצהרה בענין סירוב לשרת בשטחים הכבושים


06/03/2004

מדינת ישראל מחזיקה בשטחים ובהם מליוני בני אדם, במצב של כיבוש ודיכוי מתמשך, מאז המלחמה בשנת 1967.

לוּ היתה המדינה מחזיקה בשטחים רק לצורך החזרתם בעת עשיית שלום עם שכניה, מבלי להעביר לתוכם אוכלוסיה אזרחית בניגוד לאמנת ז'נבה (שעליה חתומה מדינת ישראל), דיינו.

לוּ היתה המדינה קובעת שיש לה זכות בעלות על השטחים הללו, מכוח נצחונה במלחמה (והיו דברים מעולם), והיתה מספחת את השטחים לתחומה, תוך החלת החוק הישראלי עליהם ומתן אזרחות לתושביהם, כפי שעשתה ברמת הגולן, דיינו.

אך מדינת ישראל אחזה בחבל בשני קצותיו – מחד לא רצתה לספח את השטחים, מן הסתם כדי לא לתת לתושביהם זכויות אזרח, ומאידך העבירה אוכלוסיה אזרחית לשטחים הכבושים, כדי ליצור נוכחות יהודית שתקבע עובדות דמוגרפיות חדשות בשטח. בינתיים, החזיקה מדינת ישראל את תושבי השטחים במעמד נחות, של אוכלוסיה כבושה, בלי זכויות מינימליות (בלי זכות ייצוג, בלי זכות קנין מלאה, בלי זכות התארגנות, ועוד), ותוך הפעלת כח בלתי-סביר.

כאזרח מדינת ישראל וחייל מילואים בצבאה, נקראתי עתה לשירות בשטחים הכבושים, בשמירה על התנחלויות בבקעת הירדן. כאדם, אינני יכול להיענות לקריאה. אינני יכול, משום שהיא בלתי-מוסרית: היא בלתי-מוסרית, משום שהיא קוראת לי להצטרף לכוח המדכא בני אדם בשל זהותם האתנית; שמאפשר בכוח הזרוע ביצוע של מעשים בלתי-חוקיים, החל במעשה ההתנחלות עצמו (שעובר על סעיף 49 באמנת ז'נבה הרביעית, שנחתמה בשנת 1949), דרך מעצרים מנהליים ועונשים קולקטיביים, וכלה בהרג חפים מפשע. הפרת זכויות האדם וההתעמרות בתושבי השטחים הם דברים שבשגרה, עד כדי כך שאינם מדווחים עוד בעיתונות בעמודי החדשות.

אבקש להבהיר: אינני עיוור לנעשה בצד הפלשתיני. הם מנהלים מערכה של טרור, וזה דבר בזוי ושפל מאין כמותו. מותר להזכיר שגם יהודים הפעילו טרור בעבר (פעולות האצ"ל נגד אזרחים ערבים בתקופת המנדט הבריטי, משנת 1937 ואילך, בעקבות מאורעות תרצ"ו, כולל הרג נשים וילדים בפיצוצים בשוק ובירי על אוטובוסים), ובכך דָמוּ ביותר לארגונים כגון "הג'יהאד האיסלמי" וה"חמאס". ההבדל הוא בתמיכת האוכלוסיה: רוב האוכלוסיה היהודית התנגדה לדרכן של המחתרות בתקופת המנדט, בעוד שבקרב הפלשתינים קיימת, לפי סקרים שנים, תמיכה מאסיבית בדרך האלימות והטרור להשגת שאיפותיהם הלאומיות הלגיטימיות. תמיכה זו של הפלשתינים בדרך האלימות היא חולשה מוסרית שתיזכר להם לדראון עולם, וגם ההסתה הפרועה נגד יהודים, ישראלים, וארה"ב אינה מוסרית בעיני.

אך מוסר, לדידי, הוא אבסולוטי, לא יחסי; לא מספיק להיות "יותר טובים" או "פחות רעים" מהצד השני בסכסוך, ושומה על אדם לציית לצו מצפונו גם בעת סכסוך עם בעלי מצפון רגיש פחות.

אני נשפט עתה בדין משמעתי צבאי, בעוון סירוב פקודה. יש למצוא אותי אשם בסירוב פקודה רק אם הפקודה אינה בלתי-חוקית. בעיני, מעל הפקודה להשתתף במשימות כיבוש והתנחלות בהחלט "מתנוסס דגל שחור", כדברי השופט הלוי בפסיקתו המפורסמת בעקבות הטבח בכפר קאסם, ולפיכך, למיטב הכרתי, מוטלת עלי חובת סירוב, גם לפי חוקי הצבא עצמו.

אך מעבר לכל הנימוקים לעיל ניצב מצפוני שלי. אני מסרב, מפני שמצפוני לא מתיר לי לציית.

אינני עריק או משתמט, ואני מוכן ורוצה לשרת במילואים מתוך הכרה בחובתי כאזרח המדינה והכרה בחשיבות מערך המילואים לבטחון המדינה. אשרת ברצון בכל משימה ובכל מקום, בגבולות מדינת ישראל, ובגבולות המצפון.





11/03/2004

הערות על משפטי ומה שקדם לו:

1. היום נשאתי את הדברים הללו במשפט שנערך לי על סירובי לשרת בשטחים. זכיתי להשמיע את הדברים במלואם וללא הפרעה, והקצין השופט אף הציג לי מספר שאלות בתום נאום ההגנה שלי, כדי להבהיר עוד יותר את עמדתי.

2. נידונתי לעשרים ואחד ימי מחבוש, החל מתאריך 14/03/2004.

3. לפני המשפט השתתפתי באימון היחידה (בתוך גבולות ישראל). כל הקצינים שאיתם באתי במגע, ממפקד הפלוגה שלי ועד למפקד ה"תעסוקה" הנוכחית, התייחסו אלי בכבוד ובנימוס. מפקד התעסוקה אף השתדל למצוא פשרה שתאפשר לי להשתתף במשימה, אך כל היישובים שהכוח נועד לאבטח נמצאים באותה גזרה, עמוק בבקעת הירדן, ולכן לא יכולתי להיענות לפשרה.

4. לפחות ארבעה קצינים טענו באוזני בפירוש שבקעת הירדן אינה חלק מהשטחים. לאחר שניסיתי, לשם הבהרה, לדבר על הקו הירוק במקום על "השטחים", טענו הקציני בתוקף שיישובים כגון תומר ויפית אינם מעבר לקו הירוק, כלומר הינם בשטח ישראל. על היישוב נעמה, אמרו שהוא נמצא על הקו הירוק. אלמלא עשו עלי הקצינים הללו רושם חיובי ביותר כאנשים הגונים, רחוקים ככל שיהיו מדעותי, הייתי חושד שמדובר בנסיון הטעיה מכוון; אני מניח שלא מדובר בהטעיה מכוונת, אלא בטשטוש הבחנה שמנשב בצבא מלמעלה עד למטה, ובעצם מהממשלה ועד לקצונה הזוטרה. במלים אחרות, נדמה לי שיש קונסנסוס חדש, לפיו כל "שטח C" סופח דה-פקטו, כלומר אינו רק נתון לשליטה בטחונית ומוניציפלית לפי ההסכמים עם הפלשתינים [האם עודם בתוקף בכלל? אינני בטוח.], אלא שייך למדינת ישראל במלוא מובן המלה. זה מדאיג ביותר. היה זה על רקע תפיסה זו שמפקד ה"תעסוקה" הבטיח לי שלא אאלץ לשרת מעבר לקו הירוק; הוא חשב על שטח C.

5. בפלוגה שלי לא נתקלו מעולם בסרבנות מצפונית. לא היה איש בפלוגה שתמך בעמדתי, גם לא שלא לציטוט, אך חלק מהחיילים הביעו הערכה לעמידתי על עקרונותי; חלק אחר סיפר בדיחות על ערבים טובים וערבים מתים. גם הקצינים מתנגדים לדעותי, אך הביעו הערכה וסימפתיה רבה.

Current Mood: morning
Current Music: Mozart -- Don Giovanni

(25 comments | Leave a comment)

Comments
 
[User Picture]
From:brad
Date:March 12th, 2004 08:01 am (UTC)
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I'd be interested in an English translation, if only a quick overview.
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From:ijon
Date:March 12th, 2004 12:30 pm (UTC)
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Happily, arnulf has undertaken to translate this. He's working on it right now. I'll post the English version as soon as it's ready.
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From:ukelele
Date:March 12th, 2004 12:52 pm (UTC)
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Yay!

...are you averse to translating your own works, by the way?
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From:ijon
Date:March 12th, 2004 12:59 pm (UTC)
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Not averse, just wary: whenever I attempted to translate anything but trivial texts of mine from one language to another, I got tangled in such painful mental loops that I pretty much gave up on it. I guess I just can't handle being both author and translator of the same text.
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From:lilacsinmarch
Date:March 12th, 2004 10:50 am (UTC)

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I salute you(and I've never saluted to anyone before).
From:windesbraut
Date:March 12th, 2004 01:24 pm (UTC)
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I commmend you for standing up for your beliefs, and would also like to read an English translation.
[User Picture]
From:wildernesscat
Date:March 12th, 2004 03:40 pm (UTC)
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What's gonna happen after you do the time? Will they try to play the same trick on you again and again?!
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From:ijon
Date:April 1st, 2004 03:42 pm (UTC)
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They (the IDF) are not playing a trick on me; they are calling me to reserve duty, which, at this point in time, mostly involves maintaining the occupation of the territories.

So yes, they will call me again, six to eighteen months from now, no doubt. In the meantime, I shall try to get transferred to a different unit.
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From:shunra
Date:March 12th, 2004 08:27 pm (UTC)
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Kids should have the chance to study that statement in schools and scout teams and such.

I've done my part - hauled Shachaf over and read it to him. I'll do that with some other kids, too.

More power to you, Asaf.
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From:ijon
Date:April 1st, 2004 03:43 pm (UTC)
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Thank you. I think it's been put much better elsewhere and by other people, though.
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From:bugel
Date:March 13th, 2004 05:59 am (UTC)
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Your statement would have been a pretty strong statement if you hadn't included that disclaimer about Palestinian violence.

Does your own laudable decision not to be an opressor give you the moral superiority to tell Palestinians how they should regain dignity over their lives? We may think of the Palestinian violent struggle as ineffective, as cruel, as misguided, we may even call it terror - but we have no right to moralize about it, or condemn the Palestinians for supporting it. The Geneva Convention, which you quote, is very clear in stating that armed resistance against occupation is legitimate, and not an excuse for the occupier to engage in collective punishment and opression.

The best thing you can do against Palestinian violence is exactly what you're doing. If (but only if!!!) enough people will join you and refuse to opress, Palestinians might possibly conclude that NOT all Israelis are ticking bombs, potential soldiers, supporters of a racist state, legitimate targets in a legitimate struggle according to Asa Kasher's applied theory.

And that, Asaf, is the huge contribution you are making to the Israeli society you still wish to defend, and you can be proud of it - I mean it. Take my best wishes with you.

Daniel
[User Picture]
From:ygurvitz
Date:March 13th, 2004 09:31 am (UTC)

Returning to reality

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Does your own laudable decision not to be an opressor give you the moral superiority to tell Palestinians how they should regain dignity over their lives?

No.

That's what we have common human decency for. The deliberate murder of noncombatants is not "regaining dignity over lives", is not a war of liberation, but an act of barbarism. If you cannot find it in you to denounce, without qualifications, the murder of children on their way to school, of people on their way to work, of the sniping of a baby - then I daresay you have no business moralizing to Israelis about the horrors they are committing in the OTs. The whole premise of such protest is humanistic, i.e., that all people are equal and have the same rights; and if you think that the murder of some people is permitted due to their nationality, what are you doing here?

The disclaimer is necessary because at one point 81% of Palestinians supported suicide bombing; because the suicide bomber is still a national hero to Palestinians; because Palestinian society worships murderers. And if a person wants to claim his action is based on moral grounds, he must disassociate himself from the Palestinian blood-soaked quest for liberation, since it is anything but moral.

That such disclaimers are necessary before doing what is right is to be blamed solely on the methods chosen by the Palestinians - and on those who think that any and all methods are acceptable in a national struggle for liberation.

Funny, I used to think that liberals held the person to be more important than the nation or the state. Guess I was wrong.
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From:bugel
Date:March 13th, 2004 02:02 pm (UTC)

Re: Returning to reality

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Don't misinterpret what I'm saying, Yossi.
I am not supporting Palestinian violence.
I am also not moralizing them about it.
Nobody who is part of the problem (all Israelis, all Americans) has any right to tell them what to do.

Personally, I am 100% pacifist. I think that the most effective way for Palestinians to achieve liberation would be to renounce all violence, and marche en masse on foot to the Centers of all Israeli cities in a move well-publicized in advance, with all the media watching, and paralyzing Israel entirely. I think this would be more effective, more laudable, more moral, then armed struggle. But do I have the right to tell them that? Only if I want to take responsibility for the 5 or 6-digit number of civilians that the Israelis would mow down, before capitulating. That's not a responsibility that I can take. I cannot tell them which path to choose, or which path not to choose.

As to your 'funny' comment - Speaking for myself, I don't care about Palestinian national liberation. I hold that the life and dignity of every individual in Palestine is more important than the survival of the Israeli racist state. FWIW, most Liberals support Israel's right to exist, so you may be right, but not the way you meant.
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From:iod
Date:March 14th, 2004 06:17 pm (UTC)

Re: Returning to reality

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If what you're saying is true, than the opposite is also true - nobody who is part of the problem (all palestinians, all Europeans (hey, if all Americans can be part of the problem for Palestinians, why not all Europeans for us?)) has any right to tell us what to do.

Hurrah for anarchy, huzzah for hobbsian murderousness, yeepa for total chaos and fuck all for humanity.

Oh, and if such a march will take place, I can tell you I'll be terrified out of my wits. Easy for you to speak, so far away from all the bombings and the death brought about by what appears to be regular people. In lieu of an example, I'll attempt a metaphore: if you knew cats in your neighbourhood had a deadly disease that gets spread by touch - how many would you pet?

Oh, wait, I do have an example: recently, in the Erez border crossing, a woman begged the soldiers to allow her to pass without being checked for metal, because she had a platinum plate in her leg. The soldiers took pity on her and let her pass without and inspection. She didn't have a platinum plate. She had an explosive belt. Those same soldiers who let her pass paid with their lives for being kind to that woman.
The erez region is a source of livelihood for thousands of Palestinians, but that woman and those who sent her could care less.
And you think we can't moralize them? These people have sunk so low that any lowlife can moralize to them, let alone those who are trying to do what they can to assist the Palestinian population, like Ijon.

Never ceases to amaze me how some people are utterly blind to the simple facts of living in this region.
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From:ygurvitz
Date:March 15th, 2004 05:28 am (UTC)

Re: Returning to reality

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Don't misinterpret what I'm saying, Yossi.
I am not supporting Palestinian violence.

Oh, but you do. When you say that the murder of civilians should not be protested, but on the other hand inconveniences in roadblocks and land-grabbing in the settlements are war crimes, you make the latter far worse than the former, thus, after all the hedging, you support them. To refuse to denounce the murder of innocence is to support it. To deny, in effect, that any Israeli - crippled, child, ordinary man in the street - in apriori innocent, and hence protected under international law (not to mention morals), is to say that their deaths are justified, or at the least that you are indifferent to them.

And I think that it is a weird kind of pacificm (a fantasy in and of itself) that finds the killing of civilians to be acceptable.

I wonder: since terror is an acceptable tactic to you - you do not protest it or think you have the right to - how about mega-terrorism? Say, a nuke in the suburbs you live in? After all, Americans, who are "a part of the problem", have no right to tell the Palestinians what to do.

That ends the discussion, as far as I am concerned. I have nothing to say to people who think that me blowing up on my way to work is an acceptable, if unfortunate, method of conflict resolution.
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From:bugel
Date:March 15th, 2004 12:55 pm (UTC)

Re: Returning to reality

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1 - You may want to read up on internatiomnal law. Interfering in the lives of civilians under occupation is illegal under international law and constitutes a war crime. Armed resistance is not; moreover, it is explicitly legitimate. So far about legalities on the larger scale

2 - Killing in general, and killing of civilians in particular, should always be protested, as such, in general. However, as a former Israeli tax payer, as a current US tax payer, and hence as a person co-responsible for the war crimes being committed in my name, I do not have the gal to moralize to the other side about it, or to dicate to them their form of struggle, or consider it justification for more war crimes, in particular if you look at numbers of unarmed bystanders killed (far more on the Palestinian side), and also in particular in light of the fact that even the first intifada (stones, not suicide missions) started only 19 years after the 1967 occupation. The fact that I don't assume that arrogance does not mean that I support it, although I understand that with-us-or-against-us-style channel-vision might make it look that way, to people with a certain mindset. I explicitly do NOT support violence. Any violence.

And yes, if victims of the US would send a nuke to my corner of the world (not a suburb, thank you!), I would feel all kinds of things, but I would not moralize the victims. I would hope, though (in vain, of course), that Americans would respond the way the Spanish did.
From:(Anonymous)
Date:March 17th, 2004 05:08 am (UTC)

Re: Returning to reality

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Respond the way the Spanish did?
Why don't you elect Chembelian himself?
You know, if the British were not so warlike and fascitic, and had given Hitler world domination, the whole WWII would not have happend.

[User Picture]
From:ijon
Date:April 1st, 2004 04:22 pm (UTC)

Re: Returning to reality

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1. I recognize the right of occupied people to organize armed resistance, provided that said resistance is aimed at the occupying force, i.e. the military operated by the occupying government. Civilians are to be protected in any event. I'm no expert on international law, but I'd be much surprised if the right to hurt civilians of the occupying nation is guaranteed anywhere. Can you cite your source?

2. You write "I explicitly do NOT support violence". Explicitly? How does one explicitly not support something? I think you can either condemn something explicitly, or merely silently not support it. I don't see how you can explicitly not support something without condemning it. It is a matter of fact that you choose not to condemn Palestinian terrorism, and so, I think, you silently do not support it, but not explicitly. And silent non-support is dangerous (thought not illegitimate!), as Burke put it: "The only thing necessary for the triumph [of evil] is for good men to do nothing."

Of course, I do nothing about the situation of human right in North Korea, to give one example out of many, but it can't be helped: there's only so much one can do. I'm trying to act responsibly in the situation that my own country is in, at least.

Condemning Palestinian terrorism does not contradict condemning the settlements in the OT, or the daily violation of human rights there. I'm not saying this to reprimand you for not condemning the Palestinians, I'm saying this to defend my own choice to do so. I support their struggle for independence, and I think IDF soldiers (including reservists, yes) are legitimate targets; I condemn their terrorism against civilians.
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From:bugel
Date:April 1st, 2004 09:30 pm (UTC)

Re: Returning to reality

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First of all, welcome back. We've been thinking about you.

I don't know whether you read the entire discussion, before responding. You ask me to cite a source in international law that would protect the right to hurt civilians of an occupying nation. I can't oblige, and indeed, I have never claimed such a thing. Moreover, I have said: "Killing in general, and killing of civilians in particular, should always be protested, as such". I think we have no disagreement here. We may have a disagreement as to how to define civilians here, but that's another issue.

The question was, what to when Palestinians kill people who are unambiguously civilians. I'm against it. I don't approve of it. Explicitly. When I talk to Palestinians, I point out that it doesn't serve their purposes at all. But condemnation is a step further, one I'm not prepared to take. Let alone would I moralize them about a "chulshah musarit shetizakher lahem ledera'on 'olam", as you do did.

I think your moralizing tone detracted enormously from your otherwise excellent statement. That's my feeling, and that's what I stated. But then, who am I to tell you what to say? After all, you've paying an enormous prize in order to be part of the solution, rather than of the problem. Maybe you feel you that this has bought you the right to moralize to the Palestinians about their actions. And maybe you ahve indeed. Ordinary Israelis, Americans, or other contributors to the occupation, myself included, have no right to moralize to the Palestinians. We have no right to tell them what form of struggle they ought to take, at what point, and to which extend they ought to endure their suffering before they explode, figuratively as well as literarily, and take us with them.
(Deleted comment)
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From:ygurvitz
Date:March 15th, 2004 05:29 am (UTC)

It's not biblical

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It's Talmudic. And it is said specifically about a "thief in the night". Which might apply nicely to settlers.
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From:ijon
Date:April 1st, 2004 03:51 pm (UTC)
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The author of this maxim (השכם is to way to spell it, btw) did not live in a democracy; I do, and I like it that way. So I support an amended form: הקם להורגך, השכם לעוצרו, ואם אין ברירה, התגונן עד כדי הריגתו. In our modern times, we have ways to stop would-be killers without killing them, i.e. arrests and imprisonment.

What we don't have is a way to tell a Palestinian who is about to go on a suicide bombing from a Palestinian who isn't, and therefore we don't really know who are the ones who fall under הקם להורגך. Hence my support of a separation wall on the green line, which is the least evil.
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From:bugel
Date:April 1st, 2004 09:53 pm (UTC)
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Ijon, you really surprise me with your support for a wall, and I have to ask you: would you agree to serve as a guard at a settlement in Galilee, built on confiscated land of Sakhnin or Arabeh, or of a village which no longer exists, the residents of which are waiting to come back? I found your reasons for not serving in the Jordan Valley very interesting, but wouldn't that same logic apply to the rest of Palestine as well?

And indeed, why would you support a wall on the green line? Under international law, every inch beyond the 1947 partition plan has the same status (that's why all the embassies are in Tel Aviv, since even West Jerusalem is not recognized as part of Israel). The results of the ethnic cleansing campaigns of 1947-1950 have no legal status.

Not that I'd advocate a return of Israel to those ridiculous borders, of course. The only thing to end the violence for good is a one-man-one-vote democracy, with minority rights enshrined and guaranteed in a constitution.
From:(Anonymous)
Date:January 6th, 2008 01:07 pm (UTC)

הקם להורגך השקם להורגו

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How do you say this in English?
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From:atzmi
Date:March 13th, 2004 11:44 am (UTC)

אני מזדהה עם כל מילה שכתבת

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חבל מאוד שאנשים כמוך נשלחים לכלא. מצד שני, נראה שאתה איתן בדעותיך מכדי ש-21 ימי מאסר יצליחו לשנות אותן. אני מקווה שהימים האלה יעברו עליך בקלות האפשרית, ושהצבא לא יתעקש אח"כ ללכת איתך ראש בראש. תכין לעצמך הרבה ספרים, וטבלת יאוש עם 21 ריבועים, ובשאיפה הכל יעבור בשלום. מחכה לקרוא אותך שוב ב-4 באפריל...
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From:ijon
Date:April 1st, 2004 03:52 pm (UTC)

Re: אני מזדהה עם כל מילה שכתבת

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תודה על תמיכתך. בהחלט יידרש יותר ממאסר כדי לשנות את דעותי.
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