It must be the most successful marketing campaign in history. The color orange is so strongly identified with the settler/anti-disengagement movement that I automatically become suspicious of anyone and anything with the color orange. It’s even reached the point where it has simply become a distasteful color. Yes, the cute little stuffed penguin on my desk has suddenly become an enemy agent, and parts of the company logo will have to go. I feel funny getting in taxis that have an orange ribbon (and given that I take a shuttle taxi between the train station and my office twice a day, the orange ribbon potential is always there), as if I’m actually contributing money directly to the anti-disengagement movement. Of course, maybe they change their ribbons based on the neighborhood that they happen to be driving through, as one Jerusalem-based taxi driver told Lisa from On the Face. In the area where my office is, though, I’m inclined to doubt it. These guys are “ktumim” (“oranges”) through and through.
“Ktumim”. Whenever I say it, I say it with disdain, as if I was swearing. I wish I could say that I can’t help it, but that would be lying. Obviously, I do it on purpose. Perhaps if I wasn’t so disgusted by their actions, I wouldn’t feel the need to refer to them in this way, but their protest methods are so utterly abhorrent that all I feel is anger. Placing fake bombs in bus stations sickening, and to place one in the Netanya bus station just two days after last week’s terror attack in the city is a twisted act of cruelty perpetrated against the people in Netanya. I think of these religious (am NOT referring to all religious people here – am specifically referring to those I describe in the following text, having seen it on the news – I have many religious friends and colleagues who are wonderful people and would never do such things, especially not in the name of Judaism) people who would never take God’s name in vain, yet these same people have no qualms about taking events of the Holocaust and equating these atrocities with what is happening here, like writing their identity numbers on their arms in protest, or pinning Stars of David to their clothes.
With the latest goings on at Kfar Maimon, I can’t help but be reminded of a woman I know who lives there. A fervent right-winger (I can only assume that her car is bedecked in orange, and that she’s probably gone out and purchased a new wardrobe consisting solely of orange articles of clothing) who had no problem to share her political beliefs (and any other beliefs she may have had) with anyone who would listen (not a terribly endearing quality in the workplace), I imagine her to be serving up coffee and cake to her “guests”, reveling in the fact that she is doing her part for the cause (perhaps she’s even helping them to abuse the soldiers and police in the vicinity). This charming individual once tried to explain the actions of the would-be Jewish terrorists who tried to blow up an Arab girls’ school in Jerusalem some years ago as an act of misguided youth (she knows one of the families, and he couldn’t possibly be a terrorist!), and my colleagues and I are counting our blessings that she is no longer working with us, so that we won’t have to go through the disengagement with “ha’ktuma ha’zot”.
Of course, I realize that not everyone sporting orange these days supports the perpetrators of these acts, and that they are simply against the disengagement. However, words of condemnation are few and far between, and if these people do not take a vocal stand against the psychos, one can only assume that they support them. And, with these frightening hooligans setting the course of events, it should prove to be a most interesting Summer, to say the least, pitting Jew against Jew, brother against brother. Let the feelings of impending dread begin…