Monday, August 8, 2011

From Rothschild Boulevard

Tel Aviv, August 6, 2011
Nimrod Shapir, who has been in contact with some of the leaders of the protest, submits this post about Saturday night's demonstration:
It was amazing, but what most thrilled me was to rub up against, in the heat and humidity for hours, 300,000 Israelis, most of them young, singing, bellowing slogans, angry, but all in a good spirit, with giant smiles on their lips, with a feeling that from now on, we, the demonstrators control our fate and that the government has no choice but to satisfy our demands.
It’s clear that this is not what happens, but this was the feeling of elation and the sense of power that this convergence gives. (See Freud, The Psychology of the Masses).

But 300,000 huddling Israelis, not pushing, not cursing, and smiling to each other – such a thing I have never experienced in Israel, given the heterogeneous composition of the demonstrators (in contrast to the Left’s demonstrations that are “all in the family”).

At the demonstration last evening, there were many students, youth movements, but also groups of Arabs, Ethiopians, Russians, and of course, gays and lesbians (on one of their signs it was written “I haven’t come out of the closet because I don’t have money for an apartment.”)

The demonstration was not political in nature, and only a few signs clearly called for Bibi’s resignation or were against the settlements. Despite this, there were almost none among the demonstrators that wore kippot, despite the speech of Rabbi Benny Lau. The religious, that to my regret deal only with the question of the Messiah and the whole Land of Israel, have disassociated themselves from the Israeli consensus. And perhaps this is a good thing, as it will be more difficult for them to play the wronged Cossack.

Our accomplishments are endangered here. Unfortunately, poor management of your political system, in the United States brought a reduction in your rating by S&P. Yes, once again, a lack of American decisions are screwing us!

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