The gruesome image shown above is not the real, much more gruesome Ariel Sharon; rather, it is a life-size wax effigy, part of an art installation. What the artist was thinking of I do not know, though I suspect an intention, not badly realized, of biting, transgressive drollery.
There is something about the mouth that reminds me of Saul Bellow.
I’m superstitious about saying that I’m glad people are dead, though if there’s anybody I might be tempted to say it of, it’s this monster. Not that it matters; the Golem-state he helped create, and juice-up, remains, whether or not his bloated carcass is sucking in life support that might be better used. Apart from that niggling economy, his final corporeal dissolution benefits no one and harms no one.
Not being God, I am also hesitant about consigning him, or anybody else, to eternal torment, even in imagination. One — the merely human one — does rather feel that eternity is a long time, no matter how bad a person has been. Which of us, in Sharon’s circumstances, can be sure that he or she would not have become Sharon? It’s a serious question, and well worth pondering.
At the same time one also feels that a nice long stretch at the Mount Purgatory Correctional Facility would do the guy good. Say a millennium or two. In the white phosphorus spa. But this is as far as my own merely human sense of justice extends.
As Richard Stallman said of Steve Jobs: I won’t say I’m glad he’s dead; but I’m glad he’s gone.
I note with pleasure that there is to be an Ariel Sharon Park, outside of Tel Aviv. It’s a-building, even now, on top of an old garbage dump, which was in turn placed on top of a Palestinian village, whose inhabitants were either killed or chased out during the ’48 atrocities.
Really, it would be difficult to find a better metaphor for modern Israel.