Sunday, July 29

Nation-State Law and Minority Sensitivities

This shocking, racist Nation-State Law has been passed in the Knesset. It is a very sad day for Israel’s future as a democratic state. The very foundation of Israel’s democracy has received a big knock. Israel’s non-Jewish citizens have received a slap in the face by the present right-wing Israeli Government - the most right-wing illegal settler-oriented government since Israel’s establishment.

Israel’s Druze citizens, Circassians and Palestinian citizens of Israel are now, according to this law, second-class citizens by default. The law places emphasis on Israel being a Jewish State and democracy is secondary. Over time this will allow democracy and the court system to be further weakened.

The ultra-Orthodox Parties will get stronger and the interpretation of Halacha will be stricter. The “Who is a Jew” definition will also be more strictly defined according to ultra-Orthodox and Zionist Religious Orthodox criteria. After all politically they hold the balance of power of extortion over any government in power. Victims of this Nation-State Law will be Reform and Conservative Jews as well. The ultra-Orthodox political parties in the coalition do not recognize them as Jews, which means that they will also fall into the category of second-class citizens. Reform and Conservative Jews, who wish to settle in Israel may not even be recognized as Jews under the ”Law of Return”1 in the future. It will just take an amendment or two to the existing Law of Return. Leave it to the present Coalition Government. They are capable of getting a majority over almost any reactionary, racist bill they wish to legislate into law. Today non-Orthodox rabbis have no recognition and it is illegal for them to even conduct marriage ceremonies. Last week a Conservative Rabbi, Dov Hayun, was woken up at 5.30 am and taken for questioning on suspicion of marrying a couple the bride is suspected of being a mamzer 2. The LGBT community will also be second class citizens as they are considered deviants by the establishment religious parties and the Orthodox Israeli Rabbinate.

Ultra-Nationalist Zionism will become mainstream and this is akin to racism and apartheid. The present Israeli Government Coalition members may be viewed as ultra-Zionist Nationalists. This is the most insensitive, racist, coalition government that Israel has ever had and still has! They make stupid laws and hurt Israel's non-Jewish minority citizens and then after the damage done, they do a patch-up job by “Band-Aid” explanations. The government claims that this law will not affect the rights of Israel’s non-Jewish minorities. The damage was done by this superfluous law to protect Jewish sovereignty over Israel as if this was non-existent prior to this law. This law is an insult to all of Israel's non-Jewish citizens! The "divide and rule" bit will only unite Israel's minorities. Is this the new Zionism taking root? If so then Zionism is mutating into racism!

These possibilities in the future may sound surrealistic and exaggerated today, but under the Nation-State Law, anything can happen in the future at the rate this present government is trying to legislate superfluous, unnecessary, racist laws that have a potential of eroding our personal freedom. This present coalition of sycophants never fails to surprise. It will also increase the power of Orthodox Jewish religious extremists in the political arena to redefine “Who is a Jew” and also where to direct the taxpayers' money for their religious projects.

The Israeli non-Jewish minority citizens do feel that their status in Israel has taken a downgrade. The legalization of the establishment of “Jewish Only” settlements and towns is also stated in this law even though the wording to that effect had been toned down. Israel passed a controversial bill that officially defines Israel as the national homeland of the Jewish people and asserts that "the realization of the right to national self-determination in Israel is unique to the Jewish people," sparking outrage from Israel's Arab community and provoking concern from the international community.

Zouheir Bahloul MK from Zionist Camp
Zouheir Bahloul has resigned from the Knesset. He is a true gentleman and a great believer in coexistence He feels estranged within his native land because of this disgraceful, superfluous Nation-State Law with an ugly racist face. Zouheir speaks a beautiful, fluent Hebrew as well as Arabic, a language spoken by Israel's Arab citizens, has been downgraded by the Netanyahu shenanigan lawmakers. Despite all the Band-Aids plastered on this despicable, degrading law by the Netanyahu sycophants pathetic explanations, its ugly racist face will remain.

We, Israeli Citizens, ought to be concerned about this retrogressive, racist Nation-State Law. It opens the door to many future retrogressive amendments as mentioned earlier in this article.  

  1. "Law of Return - Wikipedia." Accessed 29 Jul. 2018.
  2. "Mamzer - Wikipedia." Accessed 29 Jul. 2018.

Saturday, July 14

The Nation-State Bill is the Apartheid Road

The Nation-State Bill is on the road to be debated in the Knesset. It is the total opposite of the Declaration of Israel’s Independence that states that “ it will foster the development of the country for the benefit of all its inhabitants; it will be based on freedom, justice and peace as envisaged by the prophets of Israel; it will ensure complete equality of social and political rights to all its inhabitants irrespective of religion, race or sex; it will guarantee freedom of religion, conscience, language, education and culture; it will safeguard the Holy Places of all religions; and it will be faithful to the principles of the Charter of the United Nations.”

The Nation-State Bill makes it legal to establish “Jewish Only” settlements and to exclude non-Jewish citizens of Israel. This bears a strong similarity to apartheid South Africa’s Group Areas Act of 1950 created by the apartheid government of South Africa and assigned racial groups to different residential and business sections in urban areas. An effect of the law was to prevent non-whites from living in the most developed areas.

What would happen if the US or Europe would legalize the prohibition of Jews living in certain towns? No doubt Israel would be in the forefront in accusations of anti-Semitism against these countries for passing these racist, anti-Semitic laws and rightly so. However, in Israel, there appears to be a growing racist phobia against non-Jews, especially amongst Netanyahu’s sycophants in the Knesset that would ensure a comfortable majority in the second and third reading of this despicable Bill if it reaches the final readings.  

In other words, it negates Israel’s Declaration of Independence of 1948.

The following illustration of the Nation-State Bill  comes from Haaretz

The ramifications and interpretations of what is a non-Jew can be defined as Arabs of Muslim or Christian faith, LGBT Community, Reform and Conservative (Masorti) Jews. There are many MKs in the Netanyahu Regime, who claim that Reform and Conservative Jews are not Jews. These MKs are mostly members of ultra-Orthodox Parties (Shas and Yahadut Hatorah) and even members of the right-wing religious Zionist Bayit Ha-Yehudi Party.

PM Netanyahu is reported to be determined to get this Bill passed before the upcoming general elections in 2019. He is desperate to get the extremist right-wing votes as well to increase his party majority in the Knesset.

If this Bill in its present format gets overwhelming support in the Knesset then Israel’s democracy will be compromised. The damage to Israel’s image will be great and it will be on the road to becoming an apartheid, fascist state.

The Israeli Electorate is becoming increasingly right-wing and it will not be surprising that King Bibi Netanyahu will increase his support. As it is today, the present Netanyahu Government with its sycophants is damaging Israel’s democracy.

The present Justice Minister, Ayelet Shaked, has already started her campaign to weaken Israel’s Law Courts by appointing judges whose views are conservative and serve her political agenda. There are members in her party with extremist right-wing MK views such as Bezalel Smotrich that have a lot of clout in the present government. Smotrich and Shaked are on record for demanding the release of a minor who has spent two and a half years in prison for his part in the in the July 2015 Duma arson murders of three members of the Dawabshe family. Smotrich’s ideology is very similar to the well known right-wing racist, the Late Rabbi Meir Kahane - the founder of the neo-fascist Kach Movement.

The next stage will be censorship of culture that is not supportive of the present government right-wing agenda. Israel’s passionate, Miri Regev, Minister of Culture and Sport is doing a great job in destroying Israeli Cinema projects as well as theatre productions not conforming to her political views and those of the Netanyahu Likud shenanigans in the Knesset.

Press freedom and media will be the next victims of draconian measures. As the situation is today, people who support NGOs such as Breaking the Silence, B’tzelem, Peace Now and do not support the illegal settler movement and their unofficial allies Price Tag (pyromaniacs who burn and destroy Palestinian property) are ostracised and viewed as traitors. These are the inevitable measures that may follow as a result of the Nation-State Bill if passed.

The so-called mantra of Israel being an apartheid state will become a truth.