“I hope that’s a hypothetical question. I usually try to avoid dealing with hypothetical questions. The real ones are hard enough.” (polite laughter)
“What are you a politician? Why are you afraid to answer? What would you do if soldiers came to evict you?”
“Look, let’s not limit this question to me. After all, the dilemma is not one faced exclusively by settlers. What would an Israeli Arab do if the government decided by a democratic parliamentary vote to evict him from his house? I hope he’d do his best to resist and I hope we’d both be there to support him.
What would any of you do if your government decided to evict Jews or Arabs from their homes in Germany just because of who they are. To expel a person from his home because of his religion or ethnic origins is immoral and a democratic vote doesn’t make the decision any less monstrous. It just means that those deciding are immoral too.”
“So you would resist?”
“By force? Physically?”
“Of course. That’s what resistance means.”
“How far would you go? Would you use weapons? Do you have a gun?”
“There’s an old Jewish story about a very righteous man who had found favor in the eyes of G-d. Elijah the prophet was sent to him to grant him a wish and he asked to meet the person who would sit next to him in heaven. Elijah agreed and gave him the name of a man called Simon in a village he’d never heard of. Our hero decided to go to meet Simon; he assumed that he’d be a just and learned man like himself.
On arriving at the village the visitor asked where Simon lived. The villagers seemed to be laughing and could not understand why someone of his standing would want to meet ‘Fat Simon’.
The man arrived at Simon’s house, which was dirty and neglected as was its owner. Simon was a obese, unfriendly ignoramus who seemed to just spend most of his day eating. ‘How could this be?’ thought the righteous man. ‘Shall I be sharing eternity with this man? There must be more to him than meets the eye.’
He interrogated Fat Simon, ‘Do you study Torah? Do you give charity? Do you help people?’
‘No’ answered Fat Simon. The man would not give up. ‘Have you never done a good deed? Tell me Simon, why are you so fat?’
Finally to this question Simon had an answer. “When I was a little boy I went with my father one day to market. On the way back we were set upon by anti-Semites. After they had stolen everything, they tied my father to a tree in order to burn him to death.
You see, my father was a small, thin man and I remember watching him burn. He shouted, “Shmema Yisrael” but hadn’t even completed the first line of the prayer and he was just a cinder. In a few seconds nothing was left of my father.
I ran away and on that day I decided I would eat. I would eat and I’d eat and I’d become fatter and fatter. I’d become the fattest Jew in the world. And one day when they catch me, when they tie me to a tree, I won’t burn out in a minute. I’ll burn and I’ll burn and the fire will light up the whole world. On that day all of humanity will know that a Jew is sanctifying his Maker’s name!”
And that is why we will all resist too. Not because we can overcome the IDF, of course we can’t. I’d be petrified to live in a country in which a few old, overweight guys like me can defeat our army. Nor would I ever lift up my hand against one of my sons, and they are all my sons. But would I resist? I would. And on that day the whole world would know that a Jew is being expelled from his home in Eretz Yisrael.”