In a stunning development that has world leaders scrambling, Ben & Jerry’s Corporation and the Government of Israel are now officially in a state of war. The outbreak of hostilities is the latest strange expansion of the ever-growing War on Christmas begun by Starbucks back in 2011, and which has come to involve dozens of popular snack and beverage vendors in an epic struggle to destroy once and for all the holiday of Christmas and other central icons of Western Civilization such as Columbus Day, the Confederate battle flag, and – apparently – the Israeli settlements in the West Bank.
Until last week, it seemed July 2021 would end much as July 2020 had – with stalemates in the War on Christmas remaining entrenched, literally and figuratively, across multiple fronts in North America and Europe. But then at dawn on Monday, July 19, thousands of teenage ice-cream store workers converged upon several West Bank settlements and outposts wielding metal scoopers and taste spoons, and demanding that the residents of the settlements surrender unconditionally. Within hours, the settlements of Beitar Illit and Ariel had fallen to Ben & Jerry’s unstoppable phalanxes of cheerful dessert-dishers.
Elite units of the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) initially responded by surrounding the conquered settlements with tanks and infantry, but each of these situations turned into a stand-off after Israeli troops discovered that the ice cream workers had surrounded the captured settlements with moats of hot fudge and caramel sauce and used a drone force to dump tons of Sprinkles on the approaching rescue teams.
As thousands of Israelis vowed to throw away any pints of Ben & Jerry’s they had in their freezers (after eating most of the remains because it would not be right to waste food), newly sworn in Prime Minister Naftali Bennett convened his cabinet to address the first major military crisis of his administration. By midweek, Israeli war planes had laid waste to much of northern Vermont.
Parts of Ben & Jerry’s corporate headquarters remains standing, but none of the staff’s computers work anymore, apparently due to the infiltration of a Mossad-created computer virus. Every time an employee tries to turn on their computer terminal, the screen blacks out and then images of competitors’ ice cream appear at random intervals while a cloying rendition of Hava Nagilah by the Chipmunks blasts out the speakers no matter what the volume setting is.
During the first hours of the siege, Ben & Jerry’s headquarters’ staff took to the local airwaves to urge local Vermonters to come to their aid, but few were willing. A group of Vermont peace activists did issue a public statement condemning Ben & Jerry’s for not yet having completed their planned move to 100% fair-trade-certified ingredients and for failing to have liberated all of Palestine instead of “merely” targeting some of the West Bank settlements.
Meanwhile, Ben and Jerry themselves – the original founders of the company – have officially been declared missing, and the FBI has begun a nationwide search. Starbucks, which views the new front in the larger international culture war as an opportunity to reopen hostilities in the War on Christmas in the United States, began deploying baristas across the upper Mississippi into several parts of the upper Midwest, apparently resuming their multi-year effort to conquer territory up to and including the Mall of America in Bloomington, Minnesota. Meanwhile, guerrilla forces loyal to Santa Claus have been sighted surrounding Mall of America in preparation for a possible assault.
“We will protect Christmas and the sacred traditions of the American shopping mall with our lives,” proclaimed one masked fighter, “and we know that our brothers in arms in Israel will defend the right of their government to flout international law and continue to build settlements in occupied territory so that we can maintain our freedoms here in America! Down with the socialistas!” When asked to clarify who the “socialistas” are, the masked irregular simply replied, “Don’t be a cuck!”
Meanwhile, from his military bunker in Seattle, Starbucks’ CEO Kevin Johnson continued pressing the War on Christmas and its related battles around the world. Johnson issued a forceful statement:
We will fight on until we have destroyed not only Christmas but the Christmas spirit; not only Hanukkah but Hanukkah Harry; not only Columbus Day but Columbus, Ohio; not only the Confederate flag but the letter “C” because it is part of that word; and we will force Israeli settlers to change their political views to support an end to the Occupation by denying them all of the flavors of ice cream in Ben & Jerry’s arsenal and some that have yet to be made public. The War on Christmas is not over – it has only just begun! Also, free refills on all Tall and Grande sized beverages during the first two weeks of August, everybody!”
As the world descends further into a culture war that seems to have no end in sight, we pray for the day when Klansmen and baristas, Hobby Lobby shoppers and hippies, Kahanists and organic fair-trade ice cream peaceniks will set aside their differences and snack together in peace.