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Palestinian citizens of Israel protest draft in Tel Aviv as passersby tell them to die or emigrate

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Palestinian Christians protest recruitment notices to serve in the Israeli Defense Services, near the Ministry of Defense, Tel Aviv. (Photo Andreas Hackl)

Palestinian Christians protest recruitment notices to serve in the Israeli Defense Services, near the Ministry of Defense, Tel Aviv. (Photo Andreas Hackl)

A protest by Palestinians waving Palestinians flags in the heart of Tel Aviv: last Thursday’s demonstration was a rare event, an alternative reality that interposed itself into the convenient daily routine of the urban crowd, leaving some in shock, some wondering, and others in hatred and anger. “Die, die you Arabs!” shouts one passer-by towards the demonstrators, a mix of politicians and younger activists mainly from the National Democratic Assembly (NDA)[1], an Arab political party in Israel.

The reason for the protest in front of Israel’s Ministry of Defense was the growing effort by the state – which is defined as explicitly Jewish – to compel Christian Arabs in Israel serve in the Israeli army, which is occupying Palestinian territories.

“We must send a message to Israeli society that the Israeli army is a symbol of occupation and oppression,” Hanin Zoabi, a member of the Israeli parliament for the NDA, said at the protest. “By calling Palestinians into the army, the Israeli oppressor even asks us to be loyal to this oppression. This is not just discriminating, but also humiliating.”

The army has now sent letters to a first group of Christian men, more and more of whom are expected to join. This development comes together with a recent shift in Israel’s official policy towards the Arab minority: a new law distinguishes between Muslim and Christian citizens of the state, recognizing the Christian Arab population as a separate entity. According to the bill’s sponsor, a member of parliament for the right-wing Likud, Yariv Levin, Christians are “natural allies, a counterbalance against the Muslims who want to destroy the state from within.”

Although Tel Aviv is often seen as a quite liberal and open city, the reactions of passer-by’s to the peaceful protest suggested otherwise. Maybe some of those aggressive reactions were based on Levin’s belief that the activists are destroying the state from within? One man spat out of his van window towards the demonstrators as he drove by. A second one called on them to “die”. Others told them to “go back to Gaza”, to “be happy that you are not in Syria.”

One man walked by shaking his head in disbelief and told the protesters to leave the country immediately: “I will give you the visa, just get out of here.”

A motorcyclist urged the police who were standing alongside the protest to stop it.

Awad Abdel Fatah, the General Secretary of Balad, said in response: “He is shocked. He wonders how the police can allow us to be here. When they see a Palestinian flag in the heart of Tel Aviv they are shocked. And this shows how isolated and blinded they are. They don’t want to see anything except of themselves.”

 [1] In short Balad (Hebrew) or Tajamu’a (Arabic) 

This post was originally published in Transformations on June 1, 2014.

Andreas Hackl
About Andreas Hackl

Andreas Hackl is an Austrian journalist and social anthropologist currently based in Israel-Palestine.

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63 Responses

  1. Citizen
    Citizen on June 2, 2014, 2:22 pm

    Just another version of the old game, divide and conquer; only this time it’s not in a host state in the diaspora, but in the self-defined State of the Jewish people. Instead of dividing minorities from the majority to weaken the majority, it’s divide minorities from each other to strengthen the majority.

    • tokyobk
      tokyobk on June 3, 2014, 1:01 am

      “The old game” Eternal Jew. Check.
      “Host state in the diaspora” Jews as eternal other not as citizens. Check.
      “Dividing minorities from the majority.” Jews as interlopers, then and now. Check.

      • tokyobk
        tokyobk on June 3, 2014, 1:09 am

        PS just to avoid a long OT back and forth, naturally I completely support the right of Muslim and Christian Palestinians to live as citizens with full equality in Israel and of course in a Palestinian state, and reject any idea of Jewish supremacy. I just have never seen Citizen post without the above assertions about Jews (The Jews, Joos) which I find despicable.

      • Taxi
        Taxi on June 3, 2014, 1:19 am

        What’s “despicable” is isreal’s crimes against humanity in the name of world jewery and in the name of preserving a ‘jewish character’.

        THAT’S what you should be protesting as “despicable”, dear boy.

        Citizen merely observed isreal’s “despicable” and criminal pattern of behavior. If it slots into the “joo” stereotype, then whose fault is THAT?!!!

        p.s. if memory serves, Citizen (a goy) is married to a jewish lady and has half-jewish kids. Therefore it stands to profound reason that he would NOT be promoting hostility towards his own children. But he is also moral enough to point out the dangerous and suicidal fault-lines in israel’s criminal behavior. YOU, toky, have NO RIGHT to smear him just cuz you don’t like his personal truth, a truth backed by fact after fact after fact – seven decades of facts, in fact!

      • Eva Smagacz
        Eva Smagacz on June 3, 2014, 2:21 am

        Oh give it a rest. It’s not always and at every turn about Jews. This idea that world and it’s dog obsesses about Jews is a form of communal personality disorder.
        It’s the Occupation, stupid.
        You sound like my aunt. She is a narcissist, too

      • Woody Tanaka
        Woody Tanaka on June 3, 2014, 9:40 am

        Absolutely, Eva!

      • marc b.
        marc b. on June 3, 2014, 10:13 am

        right. by suggesting that Israelis might employ tactics used by every state since the Roman Empire is ‘anti-Semitic’. so are you implying that Israelis are too stupid to learn from history, or are so morally evolved that they would never resort to the use of such tactics . . .? what exactly?

        PS have you found any photographic evidence yet that Israelis have killed Palestinians? none? just more evidence of Palestinian actors. huh.

      • aiman
        aiman on June 3, 2014, 10:25 am

        tokyobk, check what? It’s you who needs to check yourself for making inferences that suit your own paranoia/prejudice against ‘outsiders’. Divide and conquer is an old technique, it’s you yourself who is the source of the moat you wish to see in Citizen’s eye.

      • pjdude
        pjdude on June 4, 2014, 1:25 pm

        maybe you should i don’t know read and understand before assuming everyone suffers from geniticly hating jews. your way off base here. i suggest you keep reading this post til you actually understand what being said.

  2. MHughes976
    MHughes976 on June 2, 2014, 2:24 pm

    Well, will we one day see re-branding as ‘the Judaeo-Christian State’? Perhaps Katie M could design a ‘cat with halo’ symbol.

  3. just
    just on June 2, 2014, 2:34 pm

    “One man spat out of his van window towards the demonstrators as he drove by. A second one called on them to “die”. Others told them to “go back to Gaza”, to “be happy that you are not in Syria.”

    One man walked by shaking his head in disbelief and told the protesters to leave the country immediately: “I will give you the visa, just get out of here.”

    A motorcyclist urged the police who were standing alongside the protest to stop it.”

    Hey but, but “Israel is a democracy!”/not. Sounds like the hasbara vitriol and whataboutery we get so much of here, there and everywhere. What these goons don’t seem to understand is that Palestinians are one people. But then again, what can one expect when they deny them their land, resources, history, identity, safety and freedom?

  4. Walid
    Walid on June 2, 2014, 3:38 pm

    “Although Tel Aviv is often seen as a quite liberal and open city, the reactions of passer-by’s to the peaceful protest suggested otherwise. ”

    That’s not the impression I have from records past protests by African migrant workers in TA. Some very vicious words were thrown at the Africans by some Zionists politicians.

    • kamanja
      kamanja on June 2, 2014, 4:08 pm

      The Knesset Members involved don’t live in Tel Aviv. They went there to stir up trouble – wasn’t it during the run-up to the last elections?

    • wondering jew
      wondering jew on June 2, 2014, 4:25 pm

      The rich who live in north Tel Aviv tend to be liberal. Those who are poorer whether in Tel Aviv or only working in Tel Aviv, tend to vote Likud and right wing.

      • Citizen
        Citizen on June 2, 2014, 4:37 pm

        @ yonah Fredman
        Mmmm, is there an analogy you see in the USA?

      • Xpat
        Xpat on June 2, 2014, 9:23 pm

        It has nothing to do with affluence or with relative liberal values. When it comes to the military, you are attacking the heart of the nation. Particularly, right outside the Kirya, the command center of the Israeli military. Imagine what would happen if you went to an affluent suburb outside a major US military base and demonstrated against US militarism.

  5. kamanja
    kamanja on June 2, 2014, 3:44 pm

    Hope no-one here minds me pointing out that Palestinian flags were flown at previous demonstrations in this series of protests in support of conscientious objectors during the month of May. Altogether, they are not as rare a sight in Tel Aviv as this Austrian journalist, who only attended the demonstration he describes above, seems to think.

    The first was in support of Omar Saad, Druze conscientious objector now in jail for his sixth consecutive term and Uriel Ferera, an orthodox Jewish conscientious objector now in jail for his second consecutive term, plus a group of high school students not yet drafted who intend to refuse to serve. Palestinian flags were also also flown at a demonstration a week prior to the one described above, in which Uriel Ferera took part before he entered jail for the second term he’d been sentenced to. The three demonstrations, all opposite the Defense Ministry, comprised both Palestinians and Jews and were also against the occupation.

  6. Walid
    Walid on June 2, 2014, 3:44 pm

    There are undoubtedly some Christians, perhaps not too many, that would be interested in joining up with with the Israeli military but that don’t dare for obvious reasons. These notices being sent to Christians would serve as an alibi for those that do want to join as they could always claim they were “forced” into it by the conscription notices. The IDF surely knows which ones are ready to join and has sent the first notices to these people. Israel isn’t really in need of these few Christian conscripts, but they’d make great PR for Israel to clean up some of its dirty image.

  7. wondering jew
    wondering jew on June 2, 2014, 3:48 pm

    The Palestinian flag is perceived by many Israelis as the flag of the enemy. Not very surprised. How do you react to an enemy? Not very pretty. I wish Israel were moving towards peace and that would lead towards tolerance. Instead Israel is moving away from peace and the world is moving towards confrontation with Israel. What do you think BDS is? Yes, it’s nonviolent, but it is confrontation. Do you think you are getting into a confrontation that will lead to kumbaya? No.

    I understand why Zoabi is opposed to the draft, but I don’t know that she is right. If the path to the future is towards one state, then integration of Arabs into the state seems to be the way to go and if integration of US armed forces was an important step in integration in America, by analogy drafting Arabs into the Israeli army is a step towards integration. I know that the analogy is imperfect and I know that the path forward in Israel or in the Israeli Palestinian conflict is nowhere near as clear as the path towards equal rights for American blacks in the US and it demonstrates the lack of utility and simplicity (as in simple minded) of invoking Jim Crow when trying to describe (and hopefully find a way out of the labyrinth of) the Israel Palestine conflict.

    • Walid
      Walid on June 2, 2014, 3:52 pm

      Yonah, you’re putting the cart before the horse; begin by having a one state with full equality and it would be only normal for Palestinian-Israelis to join the national army.

      • Xpat
        Xpat on June 3, 2014, 12:55 pm

        Way before the horse. Israeli combat soldiers spend most of their deployment time on the West Bank. The Israeli military’s primary responsibility is enforcing the Occupation. Its secondary role is periodically invading Lebanon and Gaza. The IDF protects Israel? Nah. Its existential security needs are guaranteed by the U.S. Sixth Fleet, U.S. patriot missile batteries and U.S. intelligence.
        Israel’s military draft and the overblown place of the military in Israel life are part of the problem. Solve the Palestinian issue and there is no need for the draft.
        Which sick mind wants to extend the draft to the people who are the target of the army in the first place?

      • just
        just on June 3, 2014, 1:18 pm

        “Which sick mind wants to extend the draft to the people who are the target of the army in the first place?”

        An excellent & incisive question, Elliot. One that begs an answer!
        Actually, your entire post is great.

      • Xpat
        Xpat on June 3, 2014, 5:14 pm

        Thanks, Just.

    • Citizen
      Citizen on June 2, 2014, 4:25 pm

      @ yonah F

      Glad you see that military conscription of blacks in the US Army during the Jim Crow Era impinging on WW2, is similar to Israel conscripting their non-Jewish population to fight for Israel.

      However, the analogy is not on all fours, like a bar stool, because Israel is not sending conscription notices to all non-Christian citizens of Israel, only to the Christian portion of the total Israeli population.

    • LeaNder
      LeaNder on June 2, 2014, 4:37 pm

      Interesting rationalization, yonah.

      Do you differentiate between Christian “Arabs” and Muslim “Arabs” too? Why exactly should we in the West differentiate between them? Don’t they share the same history?

      Did religion matter in the “integration of the US armed forces”? Or do you think that discrimination against Muslim Palestinians will be more easily understood in the US than discrimination against Christian Arabs? They have many other Arab states to go to after all?

      It no doubt could be a useful propaganda tool. But apart from that?

      • wondering jew
        wondering jew on June 2, 2014, 5:01 pm

        It is true that it is putting the cart before the horse.

        I would favor a universal draft in Israel. Drafting christians rather than Muslims reveals the divide and conquer aspect of the policy, which I am not denying. Even if this draft’s designers are not set on the same better future that I have in mind, I think the discussion of the one state solution should at the least be mentioned in discussing this issue. It seems a little thin, a little skinny, a little skimpy, a little superficial, a tad too ethereal and other worldly, to talk about one state in theory and then to come to an issue like this and not discuss it at all.

      • LeaNder
        LeaNder on June 2, 2014, 6:25 pm

        glad you admit the divide and conquer aspect of it, yonah.

        Even if this draft’s designers are not set on the same better future that I have in mind, I think the discussion of the one state solution should at the least be mentioned in discussing this issue. It seems a little thin, a little skinny, a little skimpy, a little superficial, a tad too ethereal and other worldly, to talk about one state in theory and then to come to an issue like this and not discuss it at all.

        I don’t think I can mentally follow you here. Obviously in a democratic one state solution it wouldn’t be an issue anymore. But mentioned by whom in what discussion? By Andreas Hackl? By the protesters? Why should for them these issues be related other than “justifying” the anger and hatred Hackl witnesses?

        It feels you cannot allude to the wider MW or Hackl’s focus. You obviously did not have the Knesset discussions around the bill in mind.

        See, I am a loss.

    • tree
      tree on June 2, 2014, 5:13 pm

      What do you think BDS is? Yes, it’s nonviolent, but it is confrontation.

      As was the US civil rights movement. It’s purpose was not “kumbaya”, but justice and equality. That didn’t excuse the violent racist epithets thrown against it, anymore than BDS excuses nasty racist remarks made at Israeli Palestinian protesters.

      … if integration of US armed forces was an important step in integration in America, by analogy drafting Arabs into the Israeli army is a step towards integration.

      Not just an “imperfect one”, but a totally incorrect one. If the US Army’s primary field of operations was in the US South enforcing Jim Crow laws its a sure-fire given that blacks would have been protesting both volunteering and being drafted in the US Army. That would be analogous to the situation with the IDF. Besides that, only Christians, a small minority of the remaining Palestinian Israelis, are being urged to join the IDF. That would be equivalent to black Catholics being drafted in the US, but black Protestants not. Surely not an attempt at “integration”.

      it demonstrates the lack of utility and simplicity (as in simple minded) of invoking Jim Crow when trying to describe …

      Jim Crow is a useful and largely accurate way to describe the problem in Israel/Palestine, although Jim Crow was a milder form of what exists in the occupied territories today. Where it fails is in using the US experience to predict what will happen in Israel, since Israel lacks the separation of powers, the Constitution, the strong judiciary, the Federal government’s interest in promoting equality, and the general Israeli Jewish public’s empathy for those different from themselves. In other words, the fault with trying to use the US experience with Jim Crow as a “way out” lies in the fact that Israel is NOT a Western democracy as it so often claims.

    • Woody Tanaka
      Woody Tanaka on June 2, 2014, 5:58 pm

      “The Palestinian flag is perceived by many Israelis as the flag of the enemy. Not very surprised. ”

      Really? Then perhaps you can tell Foxman and all the others on your side. Because accordingly the reverse is true: the Palestinians and their allies see and condemn the Israeli flags and symbols like the Star of David, the Menorah, and other indicia of Judaism, as they are all symbols of “the enemy.” Yet to hear people on your side tell it, it’s antisemitism. But I’m sure you’ll set’em straight.

    • on June 2, 2014, 7:35 pm

      As an American, I see the Israeli flag as the flag of the enemy yet it is everywhere. Often merged into the American flag.

      • Stephen Shenfield
        Stephen Shenfield on June 3, 2014, 6:11 am

        As a human, I see all flags as flags of the enemy yet they are everywhere.

    • Sibiriak
      Sibiriak on June 2, 2014, 9:07 pm

      If the path to the future is towards one state

      “One state”– including Gaza, or it’s not one state. What path do you see toward that?

    • jimby
      jimby on June 2, 2014, 10:22 pm

      @Yonah: ” What do you think BDS is? Yes, it’s nonviolent, but it is confrontation. Do you think you are getting into a confrontation that will lead to kumbaya? No.”

      Your thinking is so far off that it makes my head spin. Do you think that the world shouldn’t “confront” Israel with BDS. We are seeing the rape and pillage of the Palestinian people by Israel. Do you think it best if we just sit on our hands and worry about the poor Israeli psyche? If so, I think you are a very sick puppy.

      stronger words leap to my mind….

    • ziusudra
      ziusudra on June 3, 2014, 3:02 am

      Greetings jonah fredman,
      Even in your attempts to see things on a fair plain, you convenientely choose the one with the advantage for the Jewish side.
      What’s going to happen when a Palestinian soldier in a Group of Jewish soldiers comes up against Farmers or Citizens? His Peers will force him to do their dirty work for them or get court marshalled! He remains the Pariah.
      We remember the Jew in contiguous euro history, whatever path he chose, he was in danger.
      ziusudra
      PS Oh, life is so rosy for Jews in Zionistan.

  8. Walid
    Walid on June 2, 2014, 3:49 pm

    I’m wondering if former Orthodox priest Nadav’s son that’s almost 18 now will be joining the IDF in the coming year. It would be something if he doesn’t after all the trouble caused by his father’s recruiting efforts.

    • Accentitude
      Accentitude on June 3, 2014, 4:41 am

      Interestingly, I found this….thing…which claims to be the “International Christian Embassy in Jerusalem” (http://int.icej.org/) but is really a PR tool for Zionist Christians and their unholy alliance and complicity with the Israeli government and its crimes against Palestinians. Maybe Nadav could weasel his way into a position now that the Church doesn’t want him.

  9. Kay24
    Kay24 on June 2, 2014, 5:14 pm

    What? Folks not allowed to protest in the “only” democracy in the Middle East?
    What a nasty response from it’s dear “civilized” citizens. Strange, the terrorist settlers also protest (that too violently), but they do not get such hateful responses from their fellow citizens. Israel seems to have a large share of racists.

    • benedict
      benedict on June 2, 2014, 7:10 pm

      And yet despite the “oppression” and “apartheid” of Israeli arabs the demonstration was allowed to take place right in front of the army HQ.

      I wonder what would have happened to a group of Lebanese jews waving Israeli flags in front of Hezbollah HQ. or to a group of Iranian jews waving the blue and white flag in front of the revolutionary guard HQ in central Teheran. Anybody wants to guess?

      • LeaNder
        LeaNder on June 3, 2014, 7:00 am

        Well, benedictus, since they would have no point to protest there. I would advise Hezbollah’s headquarter crowd to first reflect on possible intentions behind the event. Or do a little research if the crowd could possibly have escaped some type of mental institution (?) … In any case, interesting and creative scenario. Maybe something for Kathy?

        But here goes according your expectation: They would be massacred.

      • Kay24
        Kay24 on June 3, 2014, 7:14 am

        No, because we are talking about a “democracy” here, a democracy that looks more like apartheid, and the reaction from the citizens from that democracy. When the article is about Lebanon, we can guess. This is about Israel, that beacon of shining light. Clear?

      • Sumud
        Sumud on June 3, 2014, 1:39 pm

        Anybody wants to guess?

        It’s a limp analogy. Flying a Palestinian flag in Tel Aviv is not the same as flying one of a foreign country, and you know it.

        A Palestinian flag in Israel (AKA mandate Palestine) reminds zionists that their country was born and lives in “sin”: ethnic cleansing, massive theft of land and property, terrorism, massacres.

        A pricked conscience can get quite nasty…

  10. Nevada Ned
    Nevada Ned on June 2, 2014, 5:31 pm

    You want an analogy to Israel’s latest ploy?

    In South Africa, the whites went to a lot of effort to divide the non-white opposition, between “Blacks” and “Coloreds”. People of mixed race were “coloreds”. The goal of the scheme was to avoid a confrontation of whites against everybody else.

    Israel has tried a similar scheme earlier, with some success: in the 1970’s, Israel suppressed demonstrations by the secular PLO, and allowed demonstrations by Hamas, the Palestine branch of the Moslem brotherhood. Israel’s goal was to divide Palestinians between PLO and Hamas, between secular (including Christians*) vs Moslems. It succeeded as Hamas challenged the PLO. [source: Noam Chomsky, also Barton Gellman in the WaPO] In fact the Israeli scheme backfired when Hamas won elections in Gaza in about 2006.

    *by the way, some Christians have played an important role in Palestinian nationalis, ranging from George Habash (Christian background, Marxist, founder of Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine) to Edward Said

    In British India, the British encouraged divisions between Hindu and Moslem. It succeeded so well that independence was accompanied by partition into India and Pakistan, in which millions of people died.

    • doug
      doug on June 3, 2014, 12:58 am

      I sometimes wonder if Hamas wining and the resultant split wasn’t actually something Israel wanted and perhaps worked covertly to ensure. Protests to the contrary notwithstanding.

  11. James Canning
    James Canning on June 2, 2014, 7:02 pm

    Muslim Israelis are still Israelis, I should think. (And Jewish Palestinians would be Palestinians, not Israelis.)

    • Accentitude
      Accentitude on June 3, 2014, 4:35 am

      There are no Jewish Palestinians because since the Jewish settlers have moved to the West Bank, not a single one of them has ever had the decency to abide by the laws of the state in which he is physically living and to go to the Palestinian Authority Ministry of Interior to apply for residency or citizenship.

  12. Palikari
    Palikari on June 2, 2014, 7:57 pm

    If they are not loyal and don’t want to serve their country -Israel-, then they should move to Gaza, Judea or Samaria. I’m sure they would be happier there.

    An Arab (or “Palestinian”) can freely wave a PA flag in the heart of Tel Aviv protected by the Israeli police. But can a Jew wave an Israeli flag in the heart of Ramallah without being lynched in situ?

    That is the difference guys!

    • Taxi
      Taxi on June 2, 2014, 11:22 pm

      And how would you like to be drafted into the SSS?

      Cuz “that is the difference” that you’re NOT getting!

    • Accentitude
      Accentitude on June 3, 2014, 4:32 am

      Really? Congratulations on being that guy. There’s always one of you out there.

    • Stephen Shenfield
      Stephen Shenfield on June 3, 2014, 6:07 am

      Palikari: How is it a “PA flag”? Was it introduced when the PA was set up, or did it exist before that? It is regarded as the Palestinians’ flag, and that includes those Palestinians who are at the same time Israelis — and want to be both, and are trying to serve the Israel they want to be part of by protesting the draft.

    • eljay
      eljay on June 3, 2014, 7:41 am

      >> If they are not loyal and don’t want to serve their country -Israel …

      It’s not Israel they don’t want to serve – it’s oppressive, colonialist, expansionist and supremacist “Jewish State” they don’t want to serve. Makes sense.

      The solution is not to kick them out of their country, but to reform their country from a supremacist “Jewish State” in which they are second-class citizens into a secular and democratic Israeli state in which they are equals.

    • Talkback
      Talkback on June 3, 2014, 8:14 am

      Palikarie says: An Arab (or “Palestinian”) can freely wave a PA flag in the heart of Tel Aviv protected by the Israeli police. But can a Jew wave an Israeli flag in the heart of Ramallah without being lynched in situ?

      That is the difference guys!

      I agree. The Israeli flag stands for much more than just terror. It stands for colonialization, disposession, massacres, expulsions and other crimes against humanity like for example those which are based on former British emergengy regulations which Jews themselves considered to be Nazi-like, as long as they were its victims under mandate.

      What reaction would you expect?

    • just
      just on June 3, 2014, 8:30 am

      Really Palikari? Explain this, please:

      “BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Israel on Tuesday detained and interrogated five Palestinians for raising Palestinian flags on their cars in Jerusalem.

      Two of those detained were released on bail of 5,000 shekels ($1378) and on condition that they do not raise Palestinian flags as Israel celebrates Independence Day, a Ma’an reporter said.

      The three others were released.

      Eight others were pulled over by traffic police and fined 250 shekels for having Palestinian flags on their cars.

      Israeli flags are raised on buses, cars and buildings across Jerusalem as the country celebrates Independence Day. ”

      http://www.maannews.net/eng/ViewDetails.aspx?ID=586213

      PS– Haifa U. banned Palestinian flags @ protests against the Prawer Plan.

      • Palikari
        Palikari on June 3, 2014, 10:40 am

        I don’t know if this is true, but they got no lynched, as would happen to a Jew waving an Israeli flag in Ramallah.

        I have seen a lot of PA flags in Haifa U, so it doesn’t ban them.

    • Woody Tanaka
      Woody Tanaka on June 3, 2014, 10:03 am

      “If they are not loyal and don’t want to serve their country -Israel-, then they should move to Gaza, Judea or Samaria.”

      First of all, their state may be “Israel”, but their country is Palestine. Further, there no such thing as “Judea or Samaria.” It’s a fake, made-up place, named such by racists in place of its real name “the West Bank.”

      “An Arab (or “Palestinian”) can freely wave a PA flag in the heart of Tel Aviv protected by the Israeli police.”

      Not if he’s one of the people from the occupied West Bank which the “Israelis” have declared to be Untermenschen. Then, the Palestinian is more likely to be assaulted by the “Israeli” police-thug and arrested and held in barbaric conditions.

      And, it’s not the “PA flag” it’s the flag of the State of Palestine.

      “But can a Jew wave an Israeli flag in the heart of Ramallah without being lynched in situ?”

      That’s not a good analogy. A proper analogy to the Jew (or “Israeli”) waiving a Zioniist flag in Ramallah would be something like a German Nazi waving a Swastika flag in the heart of Tel Aviv, while the Holocaust was in full swing or immediately thereafter. That’s a proper comparison to the Jew in Ramallah.

    • talknic
      talknic on June 3, 2014, 10:53 am

      Palikari “An Arab (or “Palestinian”) can freely wave a PA flag in the heart of Tel Aviv protected by the Israeli police.

      They’re ISRAELIS in Israel.

      “But can a Jew wave an Israeli flag in the heart of Ramallah without being lynched in situ?”

      They’d be Palestinian Jews or Israeli?

      There IS a difference!

    • Sumud
      Sumud on June 3, 2014, 1:45 pm

      If they are not loyal and don’t want to serve their country -Israel-, then they should move to Gaza, Judea or Samaria.

      So much for The Only Democracy In The Middle East – it’s blind loyalty or you can leave, for Palikari the fascist (but see how civilised we are, we won’t murder you).

  13. palijustice
    palijustice on June 2, 2014, 9:57 pm

    Christian homes are demolished, their land stolen, their olive orchards uprooted, and their houses of worship defaced, just like their Muslim brothers, and they are expected to join the army and defend the state “Of the Jewish people”. Sure thing.

    Israel is up to its dirty tricks to divide Palestinians. I hope the Christians are wise enough not to fall into this trap.

    And also, how dare these Christians have a little chutzpah. I guess that’s for “Jews Only” too.

  14. Accentitude
    Accentitude on June 3, 2014, 4:24 am

    …a member of parliament for the right-wing Likud, Yariv Levin, Christians are “natural allies, a counterbalance against the Muslims who want to destroy the state from within.”

    So “natural” are these “allies” that over in Beit Sahour, Beit Jala, Beit Lahem (the birthplace of Christianity no less), the Israelis are arresting, beating, torturing, murdering these Christians and stealing their lands. Lest we forget the same goes on in East Jerusalem, Beit Hanina, Beirzeit, Zababda, Taybeh, Jifna, Aboud, Jericho, and other areas with Christian populations. We cannot forget that that there are also Christians living in the Gaza Strip as well, and they too have been affected by Cast Lead, Pillar of Smoke, and the on-going Blockade. Certainly the Israeli Air Force doesn’t distinguish between Christian or Muslim Gazans when it carpet bombs civilian populations in Gaza or liquifies human beings with white phospherous, or when Rabbis on the Israeli government’s payroll teach their followers that its OK to kill the Goy because they’re not human beings, that they’re less than dogs, and that by doing so, you are carrying out God’s will. Such great “allies” are we, Christian Palestinians, that we’re treated like disposable sub-human biological waste by the Zionists.

    Trying to divide Christian Palestinians from Muslim Palestinians to destroy their unity, nationalism and quest for self-determination won’t work. George Habash founder of the PLFP, Hanan Ashrawi, Vera Baboun, Azmi Bishara, Huwaida Arraf , founder of the ISM, Edward Said, Khalil Sakakini, Chris Bandak of Tanzim and the Al Aqsa Martyr’s Brigade, and Dr. Nayif Hawatmeh of the DFLP were/are Christians and they certainly aren’t “allies” of Israel and neither am I or any of the Christian Palestinians that I know.

    • Mayhem
      Mayhem on June 3, 2014, 9:57 am

      the Israelis are arresting, beating, torturing, murdering these Christians and stealing their lands

      Straight out of the pro-Palestinian propaganda handbook – no source
      provided, no evidence, no corroboration, nothing.
      Mondoweiss gives anyone who wants to spruik bullshit like this a free licence.

    • Mayhem
      Mayhem on June 3, 2014, 10:14 am

      the Israelis are arresting, beating, torturing, murdering these Christians and stealing their lands

      Straight out of the pro-Palestinian propaganda handbook – no source provided, no evidence, no corroboration, nothing.
      Mondoweiss gives anyone who wants to spruik bullshit like this a free licence.

  15. JusticeForPalestine
    JusticeForPalestine on June 3, 2014, 8:26 am

    Why was the headline of this article changed from “… Christians…” to “… Citizens…”?

  16. DICKERSON3870
    DICKERSON3870 on June 3, 2014, 12:07 pm

    RE: “This development [i.e. Israel’s compelling Christian Arabs in Israel to serve in the Israeli army] comes together with a recent shift in Israel’s official policy towards the Arab minority: a new law distinguishes between Muslim and Christian citizens of the state, recognizing the Christian Arab population as a separate entity. “ ~ Andreas Hackl

    MY COMMENT – Wouldn’t it be ironic if:
    • Israel had in the past been able to deny that it discriminated because it had pretty successfully camouflaged its discrimination against all non-Jews in Israel by basing preferential treatment on things like military service, thereby effectively (but not explicitly) having excluded non-Jews in Israel from the preferential treatment that was effectively (but not explicitly) reserved for Jews and Israel’s small Druze population; but
    • in order for Israel to begin discriminating only against some of Israel’s non-Jews (i.e. the Muslim Arabs), but not others (i.e. the Christian Arabs), it was necessary for Israel to discriminate much more explicitly than it had in the past when it had been discriminating against all non-Jews in Israel; and, as a consequence,
    • Israel was now no longer able to deny that it discriminated because its discrimination had become so explicit as to be undeniable in order to begin discriminating only against some Arabs (i.e., the Muslim Arabs) in Israel, but not other Arabs (i.e., the Christian Arabs) in Israel.

    In summation, it would be the ultimate irony if when Israel began ending its discrimination against the Christian Arabs of Israel (not for altruistic reasons, but as part of a new ‘divide and conquer’ strategy), its discrimination against the Muslim Arabs of Israel became so obvious that Israel’s closest allies (who had earlier vigorously denied any discrimination by Israel) could then only make feeble attempts at excusing it (which amounted to little more than their implicitly acknowledging it).

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