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Stop calling them “settlers”

I really wish some Jews would stop calling other Jews “settlers”. It is disconcerting to read here comments by some Jews about other Jews who deny that these “settler” Jews are indigenous to Judea, and that Jews have no right to live in Hebron, the oldest Jewish city in history. Instead, those Jews who call other Jews “settlers” help to enable the redefinition of Israeli Jews as colonizers and foreign settlers with no legitimate right to the land.

Whether or not one calls them settlers, the Israelis living in the West Bank and Hebron do not pose either a moral or a pragmatic problem. Their communities are natural outcomes of Israel’s control for almost forty years of areas that are integral to its current defensibility and/or historical heritage.

And since the word “settler” is loaded with negative connotations of “intruder,” it would be best to cease applying it to Israelis who live legitimately in parts of the Land of Israel that are part of the state of Israel, and whose ultimate disposition remains open.

Does it really make sense to call an Israeli who moves from a hillside in Galilee to an apartment block in Ariel a “settler”? Please drop the immoral paradigm insinuating their that they must be forced from their homes.

Would that you would pay more attention to the illegal houses built by Arab squatters in Hebron who proudly display in a sign that they live on land stolen from Jews.

My response in a comment thread following this article on Ynet, with partial credit to P. David Hornik.

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