For those who are home, and for those who are on the way. For those who support the historic and just return of the land of Israel to its people, forever loyal to their inheritance, and its restoration.
I was overcome by an unrestrained sense of joy after seeing a group of soldiers holding up ideologically motivated signs. Signs like "Shimshon will not evacuate Homesh" and "Nachshon won't evacuate either" are a great form of Prozac at a time where all we hear about youngsters in Israel starts and ends with alcohol, drugs, and murder.
You can go ahead and refer to them as refuseniks, condemn them, roll your eyes, and threaten us with the upcoming destruction of the IDF, the State, and the nation; I will continue to be pleased with their acts, seek comfort in their character, and count on them.
Perhaps you think that you will be safer with the soldiers who abused younger troops in line with the armored corps tradition, or with commanders who beat up annoying soldiers in Golani. Perhaps you would do well to count on them, because they are loyal to the IDF spirit and its glorious traditions. Yet I will continue to bet on the rightist refuseniks. When we hear the alarm, I want to be at the place they will be defending.
I've always supported insubordination, both on the Left and the Right. There is something about the young refuseniks which is precisely what I'm hoping for among our young generation. Something that thinks, hesitates, chooses, decides, shows courage, and pays the price. I just can't see how we can have it any other way.
Wouldn't you want to hear about one armored corps soldier holding up a sign reading "Regiment 74 refuses to abuse?" Wouldn't you want to see that soldier who shot a Palestinian in the foot, just because he thought that's what his battalion commander wanted, hold up a sign reading "Regiment 71 doesn't shoot people for the hell of it"? Wouldn't you want to see people saying they refuse to beat up someone for no reason, or do drugs or drink alcohol?
I would, and this is what I told my sons before the joined the army. "It's more important to know when to refuse than when to comply with orders." I prayed that they will be able to withstand those tests during their military service.
I visited Hevron in November 2000 after the outbreak of the Rosh Hashanah War to see what could be done to assist in the face of the growing daily attacks on the community. After returning to work for the community in the summer of 2001, a bond and a love was forged that grows to this day. My wife Melody and I merited to be married at Ma'arat HaMachpela and now host visitors from throughout the world every Shabbat as well as during the week. Our goal, "Time to come Home!"