My cousin’s daughter, a Tel Aviv lawyer, called last night. “Be realistic” she said. “You know that you are going to be expelled from Gush Katif. So get yourself a lawyer and start negotiating for money now!”
We chatted a bit about family news and then I explained why I wouldn’t discuss the expulsion or compensation law with her or with any lawyer.
My dear lawyer/cousin, please understand. There is something otherworldly about Gush Katif. We are tucked into a corner of the world with our homes and lawns but more than that we have a sense of purpose. For four and a half years we have been bombarded and instead of fleeing as is normal to do, we stayed, refusing to budge. My friend, Zimra, said “It is hard to be a Jew and obey the commandments of Hashem. But the settlement of Eretz Yisroel is one of the most important commandments of all. If we choose to live in danger to fulfill this mitzvah then we expect our children to do the same.”
Living in Gush Katif means having an exceptional relationship with the Almighty. We personally see His endless miracles and we acknowledge them. Psychologists visit to give us strength but they leave having been strengthened by us. We have heard that Gush Katif people are beautiful and our faces reflect an inner glow that sends a clear message to the Prime Minister and his Knesset that we will not give up the land of Israel to the Arab enemy. If the Good Lord had wanted us to depart he would have weakened our resolve. Instead we show strength and will not capitulate to the draconian laws that the Knesset has just passed.
Have you read the “Laws of Compensation”, dear lawyer?
If we do not agree to give away our homes or farms by a certain cut-off date, our homes will be confiscated. All of our personal belongings will belong to the State without recourse to compensation. We will be forcibly removed, brought to a makeshift court to be included into the prisons now being built. We will have no recourse to a lawyer. Specially trained soldiers and police can beat us. If we resist we can be given a five-year prison sentence. In a short while the law against demonstrations or meetings between more than three people will be put into effect. The list goes on and on.
We heard that Natan Sharansky turned white when he read the 89 pages of the disengagement plan. It reminded him of his period of incarceration in Russia because he refused to capitulate to “the law”. Sharansky said “This is worse than the worst laws of the Soviet Union.”
No, we are not realistic. For the sake of Israel and for the future of democracy in Israel we dare not be “realistic”.
Dear lawyer, read the laws that the lawmakers have just signed. The laws are illegal and immoral. Gush Katif will remain long after this Knesset falls.