The Nation-State Law

The Nation-State Law is a fact. It was passed with a comfortable majority in the Knesset long ago and now the Israeli Supreme Court has (with an astonishing majority), given its final approval.

I am an Israeli. I have lived here for forty years. I married an Israeli woman. I have four Israeli children. I live in a small Israeli village. I work for a large Israeli company. I have Israeli friends. Israel is my home.

Years ago, when I lived in this country as a permanent resident because I did not want to relinquish my Dutch citizenship, my children urged me to request Israeli citizenship, because “how can you complain or influence an entity that you are not a part of?” Therefore, I became an Israeli citizen and was allowed to vote for the Knesset and “make my opinion felt”.

Today, being an Israeli is no longer sufficient. The Nation-State Law leaves no doubt or uncertainty: Israel is the home of the Jews and all others will be tolerated at best. Equal rights and all, of course, but do not feel too at home, if you are not Jewish, this is not your home.

The originator of the law, Avi Dichter said it very eloquently in the Knesset: “We were here before you, and we will be here after you”.

The Supreme Court judges look at the Nation-State law as “but one chapter in our constitution taking shape and it does not negate Israel’s character as a democratic state”. And I guess they are right. The law does not undermine the democratic rights of Israelis, as long as you are a JEWISH Israeli. The law confirms what have been facts on the ground always. Israel is a democracy, for it Jewish population. If you are not Jewish, you can never be sure when this “Jewish Democracy” will allow you to be part of it, or when it will put you in your place and remind you that you are less because you are not Jewish.

Organizations of Israeli Arabs, like Adalah (who was also one of the petitioners against the law) are organizing to fight against the law and it remains to be seen how the Druze population will react. With the passing of the law, the Druze reacted with demonstrations, harsh statements and even resignations of senior Druze officers from the IDF, but in the end it simmered out.

But, while both the Arab population and the Druze community (in addition to numerous other goys) have the right to be angry and disappointed, and feel the need to express that anger, it is not going to solve this democracy crisis in Israel. And not in the least because the Jewish population will not care or be impressed by the reactions of Goyim. This very fundamental democratic crisis can only be solved if the initiative comes from one source: The Jews.

The Jews have to come to the understanding that the Zionist idea has sprouted the kind of situations the Jews were trying to escape from and that the Jewish Nation may indeed be a Jewish Nation but it is a racist State. The repeal of the Nation-State law has to come from pressure that the Jews exert on their government. Only then, the trend towards apartheid may be reversed and Israel can again start to concentrate on being a Democratic State and the home of all its inhabitants.

I may even start to feel “at home” here……………….

 I hope you found this article interesting and I welcome any comments you may have.

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One Response

  1. Finally a healthy, critical well written protest against this horrible law. Are we as Jews not taught to treat a stranger well?? And we are NOT talking here about strangers….all kind of ethnic tribes, clans, families have a history in the land dating back centuries.
    We are supposedly living in a post-colonial era. Yet I’m sorry to say, the way the State of Israel is constructed shows clear traces of colonial thinking. I’m an orthodox Jew, I used to share the Zionism that has taken over almost the complete religious Jewish establishment. I lived in Israel and so did some of my children. But history is erased.

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