I wrote A Hill High Enough and tossed a rough demo out into the world in about a day and a half (that’s very fast for me). It felt important to set it free immediately, at this moment. I was prompted to do so by feelings of dread and dismay.
The response to the song was generally curious confusion. So I have spent a lot of time and spilled a lot of ink today unsuccessfully trying to explain to people what it is about.
Ultimately, this is the best explanation that I can manage.
I was inspired to write this song by two things:
1. I have an Israeli friend who is on the ground in Israel. He is convinced that the terrorist strike could not have occurred without the government allowing it to happen. He says Israel is in full mobilization for an all out war. The country is a powder keg. He is terrified of the US getting involved and escalating the conflict. He believes an Israeli invasion of Gaza is imminent and that people will die by the thousands. He has a respected friend who believes the war will see a death toll in the hundreds of thousands in Gaza.
In an apocalyptic scenario (which I see no reason to rule out completely), with the US involved in the war and using Israel as a staging ground, Syria presents the next target. Then Iran, the confiscation of Iranian oil, and from there on to Russia and WWIII.
2. An associate of mine, a wealthy, entitled white person, is staying at a luxury resort in a country close to the conflict zone. She is interacting with Israeli “refugees” (i.e. wealthy evacuees to a luxury resort). These are people with whom she can identify and sympathize. She does not relate to poor brown people who don’t speak English or one of the European languages she knows. From the outside it seems like she cannot see poor brown people as human. She has begun spouting hateful, violent expressions of desire to eradicate the Palestinians once and for all, because they deserve it. She isn’t Jewish, and she lives in North America.
I have no idea what will happen from here, but I have a feeling of dread. I believe that the chances of multiple cascading holocausts is significantly higher than 0%. And I feel anger and dismay at the range of sentiment I am seeing directed towards Palestinian HUMAN BEINGS ranging from disregard to utter contempt.
In the song, as the grandson of a holocaust survivor, as someone who is highly sensitized to the centuries of horrific and repeated traumas that the Jewish people have experienced, I am saying –
“I REALLY get why you want to fight. But please don’t do it. There are a lot of powerful interests itching for a war. There are crusaders who are eager for a holy war. But you are being manipulated, and the results could be catastrophic.”
The Daily Stone