I thought that I should make the latest development in the gripping saga of Michael vs. the Israeli Defense Forces known to the Jewlicious readership, particularly its young and female contingent. After almost three weeks of almost daily visits to the Lishkat Giyus in Jerusalem for a thrilling battery of pokings, proddings, gropings and general abuse, I finally have received an IDF profile number. What did they see fit to give me after all that torture? Why, a 97 out of, inexplicably, 97. What this means for me is that I’m combat-worthy and qualified to try out for elite units, should the urge strike me. What this means for you is that I am 97 points of utter masculine perfection. I am a flawless specimen, the peak of human creation – nay, I am nigh a god. And I have very good SAT scores, am a pretty mean cook, effortlessly funky and, as my college roommate and I determined in an experiment whose particulars I don’t really wish to go into in a public forum, fertile. And sometimes bloggers write paeans to my greatness. In the sage words of R’ Marvin Gaye z”l, “Come get to this.”
(I’m fully aware that some of you out there right now are preparing to write indignant comments about how getting a 97 isn’t really that special, and that it’s not indicative of physical perfection, because that’s the kind of people you are. I would like to note that although they say they do, your mothers do not actually love you and kind of wish you’d stop calling.)
But all kidding aside, I did want to further update you on the plight of the Machalnikim currently in bureaucratic limbo. Letters have been written to the Jewish Agency in both America and Britain – the British branch has expressed interest in sending economic aid to help the few remaining volunteers who haven’t returned to their countries of origin. Me and a couple other guys are currently working on a letter to be sent to the general in charge of the Human Resources Division of the IDF, reputed to be sympathetic to our plight. We’re currently slated to be drafted on an unknown date in December, because of course it would be the very acme of foolishness to expect to have a definite draft date an entire month (more or less) beforehand. I mean, who do we think we are, Israelis? Several Machalnikim are still wavering between wanting to stick it out for the next month and giving up because of their lack of funds and lack of a place to live. And in perhaps the most amusing piece of information, two Machalnikim who received last minute deferrals staged a bit of, ahem, political theater.
As I mentioned in my previous post, the Machal boys had standing orders to report on Wednesday morning to report to induction at Givat ha-Tachmoshet in Jerusalem until most of them received phone calls on Tuesday telling them of their deferrals. Almost everyone who could went to the Lishkat Giyus to yell at someone, but to no avail. But two volunteers, an American and a Brit, decided to take it a step further. They reported Wednesday morning at Givat ha-Tachmoshet and claimed they were to be drafted. A soldier there told them they weren’t on the list. They attempted to smooth-talk their way past him and onto the waiting bus to Bakum, the induction center. Somewhat unsurprisingly, they failed in this attempt. So they walked away until the soldiers guarding the bus looked away, then made a break for the bus doors. They were chased down and physically restrained from getting on. They argued with a commander that they had spoken with a higher-up and he had given them permission to be drafted (again, to no avail). Then they decided that they would have a sit-in. So they sat down on the ground. And sang Ha-Tikvah.
Naturally, they didn’t get in. But the soldiers guarding the bus apparently thought it was one of the funnier things they had seen for awhile. After the bus had left, they gave the dissenting Machalnikim shoko and explained that they were accustomed to people at induction running the other way.
I told you these were motivated volunteers.
Oh, and a final message to that small but vocal minority who, smug in their hard-won experience, insists “Stop complaining, that’s just how the IDF is!”, I respectfully suggest that you cram it. If you bend over, you deserve what they give you. Maybe our efforts won’t accomplish anything, but if they make it even one iota easier for the next batch of volunteers, we will have done a lot more than you have.
More updates as interesting developments occur, or as I feel like it. And that’s a promise.