Both Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and Israeli prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu addressed the 73rd session of the UN General Assembly on Thursday in New York. While Netanyahu spent most of his speech boasting of Israel’s raid on an alleged secret Iranian nuclear facility, railing into the Obama-administration’s Iran deal, and criticizing Iran’s influence in Syria and Lebanon, Abbas presented a lackluster criticism of Israel, the Trump administration, and the international community.
Category Archives: Nation State Law
Journalist Ben White gave a speech last week about the meaning of Israel’s new Nation State of the Jewish People law. It can only be understood as a pushback against efforts over the last two decades by Palestinian citizens of Israel to challenge Zionism, assert their national identity, mobilise against discrimination, and, critically, to demand a state of all its citizens.
The Nation-State law, when Israel officially declared itself a Jewish state, was a wakeup call to many in the Druze community, but not to members of Urfod, a group of Druze activists who have refused military conscription. Urfod member Hadiya Kayoof tells Mondoweiss, “The law showed everyone [in the Druze community] that believed in the Israeli democracy, that there is no real democracy in Israel. Its either you are Jewish or non-Jewish, and if you are non-Jewish you won’t get your rights,” she said matter of factly, “it doesn’t matter if you serve in the army or not.”
Trump’s ‘Century Deal’ and Israel’s new Jewish-state law combine to end Palestinian state and to restore the claim, “A land without a people for a people without a land,” says Palestinian member of Knesset Aida Touma-Sliman, on a visit to NY in which she discussed international resistance to an illegal act.
Awad Abdelfattah, an organizer with the One Democratic State Campaign, explains there is an immediate need for a bold alternative to the two-state solution, which was dealt a deadly blow by the Trump administration when it moved the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem.
In her first address in an American synagogue since becoming a Member of the Knesset, Aida Touma-Sliman ripped into the new Jewish Nation State Law, which she said normalized discrimination and Jewish supremacy, and finally dispensed with equality as a normative value of Israel. “I meet a lot of Jews back home who say we need a Jewish State as an insurance policy, in case something goes wrong,” she told the audience at Temple Israel of New Rochelle. “But why should I pay the price of your insurance policy?”
Uri Davis writes Israel’s Nation State Law is exactly in tune with the values outlined during Israel’s founding. In fact the Declaration of the Establishment of the State of Israel passed in 1948 never established a principle of equality or respect of national or ethnic origin.
Ahmed Abu Artema, one of the original founders and organizers of the Great Return March, writes: “The idea of One State is aligned with the spirit of our time. The global consciousness has evolved away from the idea of nationalism toward one of citizenship. Millions of Arabs today are citizens in Europe and America who enjoy the same rights as all other citizens of those countries. Why can’t Jews live in Palestine in exactly the same way – on the basis of citizenship and not of Occupation?”
Adalah’s General Director, Attorney Hassan Jabareen offers a probing analysis of the “Basic Law: The Jewish Nation-State,” which, he argues, calls for a shift in how one conceptualizes the Israeli regime on both sides of the Green Line. He contends the Israeli regime faces questions about its legitimacy following the enactment of this racist legislation.
Palestinian flags were waved at a demonstration against the Israeli Nation-State law yesterday, and although the organizers tried to prevent it in advance, they couldn’t stop it from happening.
“It was the first time that the Palestinian community moved in buses from our towns and villages to the middle of a Jewish center, Tel Aviv, to challenge the public discourse in Israel,” Jafir Farah of Mossawa center says of massive demonstration on August 11 that united Jews and Palestinians in solidarity against the new nation state of the Jewish people law.
WNYC host Brian Lehrer rationalizes Israel’s nation-state law by saying that Israel under Netanyahu is in the same pickle as the U.S. under Trump. While guest Rabbi Farber says that the Israeli army is a “moral armed services… committed to preserving life.”
Salim Joubran, the first Palestinian justice on the Israeli Supreme Court (2004-2017), earlier this year derided the law the Israeli parliament passed this month declaring Israel the nation state of the Jewish people.
“This law is a very, very, very bad law for the state of Israel… The only thing is to cause damages to the Arab population.”
A bad disease requires a strong cure, Hatim Kanaaneh writes. Israel’s nation state of the Jewish people law is legal apartheid, and it requires Palestinian politicians and civil society to rise up and say, We seek a democratic binational state between the river and the sea.
At the same time that Israel passed its Nation-State Law, it is consolidating ties to the hard right in Europe.
Israel’s leading newspaper, Haaretz, today published an editorial titled “The apartheid prime minister” that states flatly that thanks to the new “nation state of the Jewish people” law that Netanyahu spearheaded, Israel under Netanyahu is an apartheid regime. Would that US media would follow the newspaper’s lead.
The state of Israel has always been an apartheid state. Its founding was based on denying and destroying Palestinian collective life on the land, while encouraging Jewish immigration and participation in a settler-colony, itself based on a classed racial hierarchy among Jews. –International Jewish Anti-Zionist Network response to Israel’s new nation-state of the Jews basic law.
Alan Dershowitz calls the new Israeli law declaring Israel “the nation state of the Jewish people” a mistake that was unnecessary and that will give ammunition to Israel’s critics and alienate American Jews. Israel lobby groups the ADL and J Street also say the law was unnecessary, and Israel’s Finance Minister calls it a “mistake.”
I’d made up my mind to attend the demonstration in Tel Aviv against the new nation-state of the Jewish people law, Hatim Kanaaneh writes. Then I reconsidered. I don’t trust the Israeli security services. The same extreme nationalist religious factions whose compatriot killed Rabin, have pushed for the new law for years.
Western media should stop mincing words by calling the Israeli nation-state law “controversial” when in fact it is encoding the worst human impulses into law, the likes of which are found in Nazi Germany, Jim Crow America, the Indian Removal Act and other abominable moments in human history.
“In my experience, nothing really changed with this law. The discrimination has always been evident since the inception of the state,” Amran Abu Houf says of the law defining Israel as the nation-state of the Jewish people. From lack of services in Arabic to discriminatory planning and housing policies, Israel has always favored Jews over Palestinians.
“Netanyahu’s regime is digging a deep pit of fear, racism, and authoritarianism to divide us from each other. But they can never erase us from the homeland we share,” Ayman Odeh of the Palestinian Joint List said in anger after Israeli parliament passed a law declaring Israel the nation state of the Jewish people.