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Israel - A racist state?


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Initial post: 28 Aug 2011 03:38:13 BDT
[Deleted by Amazon on 22 Sep 2011 12:54:14 BDT]

Posted on 28 Aug 2011 12:05:36 BDT
M Sobell says:
Hi,

You do not have to be Jewish to be an Israeli citizen- whilst it is a Jewish State it is a secular government governed by western values rather than religious values. In Israel, many non-Jewish people are citizens, most of which are Israeli Arabs made up of Bedouin people, Druze people and Baha'i people. You can buy and build a house in Israel if you are not Jewish and you can vote and be a member of the Knesset if you are not Jewish as long as you are an Israeli citizen. There are a few Arab parties in Israeli elections as well as completely secular parties etc. I don't know the statistics about how many non-jewish foreigners have been given a citizenship but I know it is very difficult to get. You can buy any business in Israel and non-jewish foreigners have often claimed political asylum in Israel. In Eilat, for example, a tourist town in the South, 10% of the population are know political refugees from Sudan.

Hope you find this alright

In reply to an earlier post on 31 Aug 2011 15:53:19 BDT
[Deleted by Amazon on 22 Sep 2011 12:54:18 BDT]

In reply to an earlier post on 8 Sep 2011 05:08:15 BDT
[Deleted by Amazon on 22 Sep 2011 12:54:24 BDT]

In reply to an earlier post on 8 Sep 2011 10:44:31 BDT
[Deleted by Amazon on 1 Nov 2011 18:46:39 GMT]

In reply to an earlier post on 8 Sep 2011 21:15:01 BDT
Amy Miller says:
I'm afraid Mr Sobell has given you a lot of "charta" as they say in Israel. I'm surprised (nay suspicious) that so many people seem to like his comment. For instance...

"You do not have to be Jewish to be an Israeli citizen- whilst it is a Jewish State it is a secular government governed by western values rather than religious values. In Israel, many non-Jewish people are citizens, most of which are Israeli Arabs made up of Bedouin people, Druze people and Baha'i people."

Technically true but it's because those communities predate the state's declaration in 1948. They haven't arrived recently.

The fact is you would NOT be eligible for citizenship as a non-Jew unless

a) you have Israeli parents
b) you convert to Judaism and have the backing of your rabbi
c) you are married to an Israeli

There are other ways such as if you were working or studying there you could apply for naturalisation but those are both irrelevant to what you are asking.

Anyway, Israel has a giant housing crisis at the moment so it's not like even Jews can just turn up and arrive. Look at the size of this protest a few days ago over lack of housing and the high price of living:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=82ZSTcPnZvk

...

As for the others...

Q: Can you buy land and build a house in Israel if you are not a Jew?

A: With great difficulty, in spite of what Sobell said.

Q: Can you vote and be a member of the Israeli parliament if you are not a Jew?

Yes to both.

As for the Arabs in Israel's parliament (Knesset meaning Assembly), the current figure is 14 out of 120. The most notable is one of eight deputy speakers of the Knesset Dr Ahmad Tibi. He was Yasser Arafat's advisor in the 90s, surprisingly enough:

http://www.knesset.gov.il/mk/eng/mk_eng.asp?mk_individual_id_t=208

Another notable figure is Mohammad Barakh who is Arab and General Secretary of the Knesset.

The Israeli Arabs are not treated the same though on the whole. Sobell can claim what he wants, the Jerusalem Post is Israel's Daily Telegraph so not a leftist Guardian-like paper and had this story only a few days back:

http://www.jpost.com/LandedPages/PrintArticle.aspx?id=217772

Q: Are non-Jewish political parties allowed in the Israeli parliament?

A: Yes. There is also Hadash which is a joint Arab-Jewish political party. But as Arabs make up one-fifth of the populace, a lot of Israeli politicans look for the Arab vote to swing things so not all Arabs vote for Arab parties.

Q: As a non-Jewish foreigner can I buy land in Israel?

A: No, unless its privately owned land. Even then, it is not common, see stories like this one:

http://www.haaretz.com/news/report-gulf-arabs-buying-up-private-land-in-galilee-1.282042

Q: As a non-Jewish foreigner can I buy any business in Israel?

A: I suppose a theoretical "Yes" but then how would you run it if you couldn't get in the country?

Can a non-Jewish foreigner claim political asylum within Israel?

Yes, but they can't work while there so, you know, don't get settled in:

http://www.haaretz.com/news/national/in-unexpected-move-israel-stops-asylum-seekers-from-working-1.325901

As for your most recent question, I'm pretty sure Mr Sobell has never been to Israel let alone lived there. As I've shown above, a lot of what he says is false. In my experience the Russians who flocked to the country as the Soviet Union collapsed are a lot like the Russians in Russia (unsurprisingly) but the Israelis as a whole are (and most of them won't like this if you say it) a lot like Arabs in some ways. They are *very* direct, they haggle and quite a few common phrases in everyday Hebrew are derived from Arabic, "please" and "thank you" not really among them! I'm a gentile but none of that is antisemitic. In fact, I just googled for support of my view and saw that the Jewish Virtual Library says much the same:

http://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/jsource/Society_&_Culture/weinerinis.html

Posted on 8 Sep 2011 22:48:21 BDT
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Posted on 8 Sep 2011 23:15:40 BDT
[Deleted by Amazon on 25 Mar 2013 15:10:58 GMT]

Posted on 8 Sep 2011 23:17:30 BDT
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Posted on 9 Sep 2011 00:45:57 BDT
S Wood says:
Care in the community has evidently got out of hand.

In reply to an earlier post on 9 Sep 2011 05:43:46 BDT
[Deleted by Amazon on 22 Sep 2011 12:54:25 BDT]

In reply to an earlier post on 9 Sep 2011 08:26:33 BDT
idealist707 says:
Beautifully done!
except for the characterization of the Arabs as "very" direct (implied about the Jews as co-equal to the Arabs in this way).

But then I have daily contact with only a few Arabs on a daily basis as comparison material.
But then one can ask it it is genuine empathy or just ceremonious.
But the warmth of the smiles and ideals seem genuine----I'm still talking about the Arabs. But I wonder if all Arabs would not insist that the different nations, tribes, clans differ.

In reply to an earlier post on 10 Sep 2011 19:04:19 BDT
Amy Miller says:
Thanks! Israelis can be very friendly actually. None of my above post (which went really long, that must have been good coffee) is a knock on anyone but I felt as though you were not getting the full story.

You might find Israelis a bit rude at first but I remember once getting lost and a man not only gave us directions but insisted on walking us to the place too! Not for a fee or anything, it's just a thing that is done....Hitchhiking is also more common than in the UK (as is bad driving!).

Anyway, I am semi-fluent in Hebrew but most people speak good English. Recent immigrants less so but those who've been through the education system learn English cause it's compulsory at state schools. Also most the road signs are in Hebrew, Arabic and English, like this:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/jasonnathan/3393031431/

(*not my photo, I'm just using it as an example*)

If things stay calm-ish (and who knows if they will?), I would say the West Bank is safe too, providing you stay away from demonstrations which only really take place around certiain isolated areas.

In reply to an earlier post on 10 Sep 2011 19:07:56 BDT
Amy Miller says:
I'm sure they do. What I meant is that Arabs (and Jews) in the region are both very direct compared to Brits. This guy seems nice but if he goes there trying to shop and catch buses like in the UK it won't be much fun because it just doesn't work like that.

I mean, there was a piece in the paper last time I was in Israel saying that a Jewish company had started hiring Palestinians for that very reason, because the people in the Indian call centres they outsourced too weren't direct enough to deal with Israelis and the Arabs were.

In reply to an earlier post on 10 Sep 2011 19:12:15 BDT
Amy Miller says:
I have no idea what the hell you are getting at really but what I actually said was not that Hebrew comes from Arabic but:

"quite a few common phrases in everyday Hebrew are derived from Arabic".

which is true. Look at this link if you don't believe me:
http://factoidz.com/arabic-words-in-israeli-hebrew-slang/

In reply to an earlier post on 11 Sep 2011 04:26:22 BDT
[Deleted by Amazon on 22 Sep 2011 12:54:28 BDT]

In reply to an earlier post on 11 Sep 2011 06:54:17 BDT
[Deleted by Amazon on 22 Sep 2011 12:54:32 BDT]

In reply to an earlier post on 12 Sep 2011 21:23:19 BDT
Amy Miller says:
Thanks. I speak bits of Russian, French and German but nothing near fluency. With Hebrew I am semi-fluent because a really good school friend moved to Israel and would also go there in the holidays at school sometimes so I have been there a lot, with her and more recently to see her since she moved six years ago and you just pick things up from being around it like with any language.

Anyway, I'm not sure if responding one by one is the right to do it. The amazon forums could use a revamp anyway but feel free to ask me if you have any more questions on Israel. I'll try answer them when I can.

In reply to an earlier post on 15 Sep 2011 06:38:39 BDT
[Deleted by Amazon on 22 Sep 2011 12:54:55 BDT]

In reply to an earlier post on 22 Sep 2011 06:26:58 BDT
[Deleted by Amazon on 22 Sep 2011 12:55:10 BDT]

Posted on 25 Sep 2011 23:33:20 BDT
Spin says:
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Posted on 26 Sep 2011 17:47:41 BDT
E. Gilmour says:
I do not know what you are all talking about. Amazon has not just hidden the main posts but deleted them completely. Why is this? Anybody like to repost what is deemed unfit for my consumption?

Posted on 26 Sep 2011 18:16:10 BDT
Bit fascist of Amazon to delete the main post, suppressing peoples viewpoints just because you don't agree with them is a slippery slope to internet censorship.

In reply to an earlier post on 26 Sep 2011 19:00:39 BDT
[Deleted by Amazon on 1 Nov 2011 18:47:06 GMT]

Posted on 27 Sep 2011 00:46:19 BDT
Spin says:
A lesson to us all: there is no such thing as "freedom of speech".
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Discussion in:  politics discussion forum
Participants:  76
Total posts:  641
Initial post:  28 Aug 2011
Latest post:  17 Jul 2013

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