Eretz Yisrael Time

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Friday, November 23, 2007
My name is on a list.

Actually, I’m on a few lists, but this particular list is in question is in regard to surveys.

You see, once you acquiesce to answering a survey once in Israel, you are put on the “do-call” list and you will get calls nearly every week with a new set of questions.

Sometimes it’s obvious what they want, sometimes not. Sometimes the questions are relevant, and sometimes they are about nothing important (except to the person paying for the survey).

This week I got a call, they asked a lot of questions regarding my perception of the IDF. Do I think it’s improved? Do I think the IDF is ready for war? Do I think decisions by senior officers are politically motivated or pressured? Do I think senior officers are corrupt? Do I think senior officers are qualified to fulfill their duties?

But the question that stumped me was this:

“Do I think the IDF is and acts morally?”

Now that’s a loaded question.

Certainly, after the Expulsion I would say absolutely not. That was the most immoral act in the history of the IDF.

Yet, was that what the question was really asking?

What was the motivation behind that question.

Usually when someone says the IDF is immoral, they are a Leftist and directly referring to the IDF’s defense of this country at the roadblocks or in the field.

So here is a dilemma.

Do I answer “yes” it is, as it was used immorally for the Expulsion, or do I assume that this is not even an issue in the minds of the sponsors any more, and they are referring to the defense of Israel, and then answer “no”? (Actually it was a scale of 1 to 10, 1 being least moral and 10 being most).

What would you have answered (and why)?


Naftali said...

I would refuse to answer the question. It's simply impossible to answer it with a yes or no.

Anonymous said...

Not to be paranoid or anything, but if they know how to get in contact with you -- if you give answers like "Immoral b/c of the GK expulsion, Amona, etc." could they (or somebody gaining access) set you up for sedition charges?

Just askin'....


Anonymous said...

I wouldn't answer the question. Personally, I consider the IDF to be a moral organization, whose resolve to defend its citizens is restrained by the politicians.

In some countries, when politicians engage in corrupt activities, the military stages a coup and forces new elections. It may be OK for Thailand and Pakistan, America's allies against terrorism, but would it be OK for Israel?

Batya said...

That is a very good question.
Considering all my experience with the media, I'd ask the questioner to define "moral." Of course the definition isn't in the kit, and it's a subjective word. So you must request that a note be added that it's a bad question and you refuse to answer it.
I've done that with journalists many times.

Rafi G. said...

I would have asked the questioner to explain the intent. When the questioner would not be able to (because he/she is a minimum wage student just reading a list of questions in some call center but has no idea what the purpose really is) I would refuse to answer the question or I would give a long explanation and they would not know what to write down so they would write "Do not know"

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