The Land of the Jews is NON-Discriminatory!


John R. Houk

© August 2, 2018

On July 19, 2018 the Israel Knesset (Israel’s form of Parliament/Congress) passed the Basic Law: Israel – The Nation State of the Jewish People. As an American this might be understood as an Amendment process with the force of constitutional law. In essence the law defines the Land of Israel as a Jewish State. A fact the Israeli government has maintained since the 1948 independence from the British Mandate for Palestine and the ensuing war to fight for a national existence against roughly six invading Arab armies intent on Israel’s destruction and the genocide of repatriated Jews determined to free their land from foreign control. A freedom desired by faithful Jews ever since the Jewish exile executed by the Roman Empire in the early 100s AD (Common Era [CE] to non-Christian and secularist academic world). This exile was termed the Jewish Diaspora for nearly 2,000 years.

 

Despite the idiocy of Leftist Multiculturalist and self-loathing Jewish Leftists who are screaming Apartheid racism, this Basic Law changes nothing to the legal Rights of non-Jewish Israeli citizens. I should add Jew-hating Muslims to the list of misinformed whiners spreading and listening to the propaganda.

 

Below are articles explaining the truth of how the Basic Law of Israel the Nation State of the Jewish People actually affects individual rights of ALL Israeli citizens. There is NOT even a hint of Apartheid racism making non-Jews second class discriminated people as Black people were in old South Africa, the Jim Crow laws of pre-Civil Rights USA or even as non-Muslims are treated TODAY in Muslim dominated nations!

 

JRH 8/2/18

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This Year in Jerusalem – explaining the new Basic Law: Israel – The Nation State

 

By Phyllis Singer 

August 2, 2018

The American Israelite

 

The following information from AICE (American-Israeli Cooperative Enterprise) explains the new Basic Law: Israel – The Nation State. There has been much controversy about the new law, and I think this information from AICE helps to clarify it. Israel has no constitution; instead a series of Basic Laws determines the legal aspects of the country.

 

On July 19, 2018, Israel adopted a new Basic Law: Israel – The Nation State of the Jewish People. The law provoked controversy inside and outside of Israel. After the vote, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said:

 

“This is a defining moment in the annals of Zionism and in the history of the State of Israel. Today, 122 years after [Theodor] Herzl shared his vision, we have established into law the basic principles of our existence. Israel is the nation-state of the Jewish people. A nation state that respects the individual rights of all its citizens and, in the Middle East, only Israel respects these rights. This is our state, the state of the Jews. In recent years there have been some who have attempted to cast doubt on this, and so to undercut the foundations of our existence and our rights. Today we etched in the stone of law: This is our state, this is our language, this is our anthem, and this is our flag (extracted from multiple news sources with slightly different translations).”

 

As Netanyahu said, this law codifies Israel’s status as the “national home of the Jewish people.” The law also declares Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, sets the Hebrew calendar as the state’s official calendar and confirms Shabbat and Jewish holidays as official days of rest while allowing non-Jews to determine their own rest days and holidays. It recognizes the current national flag as the official one, the menorah as the state’s symbol and “Hatikvah” as the national anthem. It also states that Israel will endeavor to ensure the safety of all Jews and “preserve the cultural, historical and religious legacy of the Jewish people among the Jewish diaspora.”

 

Some critics have suggested the law should have included the word equality. For example, Amir Fuchs, head of the Defending Democratic Values Program at the Israel Democracy Institute, said, “It is difficult to understand why the authors of this bill insist not to include this important value.” Supporters of the law counter the existing Basic Law: Human Dignity and Liberty defines Israel’s democratic character, but the new law was needed because Israel’s Jewish character was not embedded in constitutional law.

 

The law also enshrines the Zionist idea upon which the nation was founded, namely that Israel is a country established to fulfill the Jewish people’s “right to national self-determination.” Legal scholar Eugene Kontorovich notes that seven European states have similar “nationhood” constitutional provisions. … Furthermore, no nation grants a right to self-determination to a minority within its borders; otherwise the Basques in Spain and Kurds in Turkey or Iraq would have their own states. This clause is also a response to Israel’s detractors, such as advocates of the boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement, who assert this right belongs to the Palestinians and not the Jewish people.

 

Much of the criticism of the law focused on the establishment of Hebrew as Israel’s sole official language. Formerly Arabic was also an official state language (as was English). Any alteration of a long-established status quo is jarring; however, the recognition of Hebrew is consistent with the policies of other countries which give official status only to the majority language. The previous recognition of Arabic was a remnant of the British Mandatory period and does not reflect today’s reality in which 80 [percent] of Israelis, including most Arabs, speak Hebrew. The law specifically states that it “does not change the status given to the Arabic language before the basic law was created” in any other way. Hence, Arabic speakers are no more discriminated against than minorities in more than 100 countries that have a single national language. …

 

Another clause that sparked controversy states that Israel will “encourage and promote” Jewish settlement around the country. The language was deliberately altered so as not to suggest this would lead to the creation of Jewish-only towns, however, some critics feared it would be interpreted as if that was the intention. Indeed, Israel’s enemies interpreted it that way, arguing the law promotes segregation.

 

David Hazony, executive director of the Israel Innovation Fund, noted that some critics have interpreted this clause as promoting Jewish settlement in Judea and Samaria. While that may be the political goal of some of its supporters, Hazony said the “word being translated as settlement is hityashvut, which to any Israeli ear refers more to the Galilee and the Negev and the history of building new Jewish communities a century ago across the country than it does to the West Bank.”

 

Kontorovich adds that this clause is consistent with the League of Nations Mandate for Palestine, which sought to “encourage … close settlement by Jews.” More important, he says it does not “prescribe or authorize any particular policies” unlike, for example, the state constitution of Hawaii, which Kontorovich notes “authorizes land policies to promote homesteading by ethnic Hawaiians, and provides preferential land policies for them.” Kontorovich adds that Israel’s Supreme Court has ruled that Arabs have a right to create residential communities in Israel that exclude Jews, but Jews do not have the same right to exclude Arabs.

 

One indication of the double standard applied to Israel is that no international uproar followed Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas’ declaration that not “a single Israeli” would be permitted to live in a Palestinian state. …

 

The law did provoke negative reactions around the world and angered many non-Jews in Israel. This does not make it either undemocratic or discriminatory. Kontorovich explained:

 

“In reality, Israel’s Basic Law would not be out of place among the liberal democratic constitutions of Europe – which include similar provisions that have not aroused controversy. The law does not infringe on the individual rights of any Israeli citizen, including Arabs; nor does it create individual privileges. The illiberalism here lies with the law’s critics, who would deny the Jewish state the freedom to legislate like a normal country.”

 

In the case of the Nation State Law, members of Knesset voted by a 62-55 majority to approve the legislation. This is democracy in action. Still, like Americans, Israelis can challenge laws in court, and three Knesset members have already done so, one sign of the health of Israel’s democracy. … Another indication is the ability of Israelis to vote for new representatives who could revoke or alter the law if they can convince a majority of all Knesset members a change is warranted.

 

Even a critic of the law, IDI President Yohanan Plesner, admitted the practical impact of the bill was currently merely “symbolic and educational.” He said it “won’t have immediate concrete implications.” IDI vice president Yuval Shani added, “It is not a game changer and has very little problematic implications. … It won’t change how the country is run.”

 

[**Blog Editor: Source links added by blog Editor.]

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Excerpt of Times of Israel post: “Basic Law: Israel as the Nation State of the Jewish People”

 

1 — Basic principles

A. The land of Israel is the historical homeland of the Jewish people, in which the State of Israel was established.

B. The State of Israel is the national home of the Jewish people, in which it fulfills its natural, cultural, religious and historical right to self-determination.

C. The right to exercise national self-determination in the State of Israel is unique to the Jewish people.

 

2 — The symbols of the state

A. The name of the state is “Israel.”

B. The state flag is white with two blue stripes near the edges and a blue Star of David in the center.

C. The state emblem is a seven-branched menorah with olive leaves on both sides and the word “Israel” beneath it.

D. The state anthem is “Hatikvah.”

E. Details regarding state symbols will be determined by the law.

 

3 — The capital of the state

Jerusalem, complete and united, is the capital of Israel.

 

4 — Language

A. The state’s language is Hebrew.

B. The Arabic language has a special status in the state; Regulating the use of Arabic in state institutions or by them will be set in law.

C. This clause does not harm the status given to the Arabic language before this law came into effect.

 

5 — Ingathering of the exiles

The state will be open for Jewish immigration and the ingathering of exiles

 

6 — Connection to the Jewish people

A. The state will strive to ensure the safety of the members of the Jewish people in trouble or in captivity due to the fact of their Jewishness or their citizenship.

B. The state shall act within the Diaspora to strengthen the affinity between the state and members of the Jewish people.

C. The state shall act to preserve the cultural, historical and religious heritage of the Jewish people among Jews in the Diaspora.

 

7 — Jewish settlement

A. The state views the development of Jewish settlement as a national value and will act to encourage and promote its establishment and consolidation.

 

8 — Official calendar

The Hebrew calendar is the official calendar of the state and alongside it the Gregorian calendar will be used as an official calendar. Use of  the Hebrew calendar and the Gregorian calendar will be determined by law.

 

9 — Independence Day and memorial days

A. Independence Day is the official national holiday of the state.

B. Memorial Day for the Fallen in Israel’s Wars and Holocaust and Heroism Remembrance Day are official memorial days of the State.

 

10 — Days of rest and sabbath

The Sabbath and the festivals of Israel are the established days of rest in the state; Non-Jews have a right to maintain days of rest on their Sabbaths and festivals; Details of this issue will be determined by law.

 

11 — Immutability

 

This Basic Law shall not be amended, unless by another Basic Law passed by a majority of Knesset members.

 

(From: Final text of Jewish nation-state law, approved by the Knesset early on July 19; By RAOUL WOOTLIFF; Times of Israel; 7/18/18 2:45 pm – Updated 7/19/18 3:27 am)

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Bogus Apartheid Claims Follow Passage of Israel Nation-State Law

 

By Ariel Behar

Aug 1, 2018 1:45 pm

Investigative Project on Terrorism

 

Anti-Israel groups in the United States are using a recently passed Israeli law to ramp up false claims of apartheid. The “nation-state” bill defines Israel as “the national home of the Jewish people” with Jerusalem as its capital.

 

“Israel arrogantly enshrines Jim Crow laws,” the Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) chapter at New York’s New School blasted on Facebook.

 

“Apartheid is a legal term, not an insult. It’s the most suitable label to describe Israel’s treatment of millions of Palestinians over the last seven decades,” read a graphic shared via Facebook by Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP).

 

SJP and JVP are known for their animosity towards Israel. The groups normalize hatepromote anti-Semitism, and previously hosted convicted-terrorist Rasmieh Odeh at a national conference in 2017.

 

“What this law really does is it enshrines racisms and discrimination and like you said apartheid into the foundational constitutional law of the state of Israel,” JVP Executive Director Rebecca Vilkomerson said in an interview with MSNBC’s Ayman Mohyeldin. “So that means the 20 percent of Israeli citizens who are not Jewish are being told, and the state is actually now obligated with this law to treat them unequally.”

 

“Formalizing de facto apartheid, the Israeli Knesset passes the racist nation-state law, which officially designates Palestinian citizens of Israel…along with all other Palestinians living in historic Palestine under Israeli sovereign power—as second-class citizens,” claimed Columbia University’s Students for Justice in Palestine chapter.

 

Apartheid is a term used by anti-Israel activists and groups to smear and delegitimize Israel. And unlike apartheid South Africa, both Jewish and non-Jewish Israelis receive full voting rights, hold elected office, serve in the military and prominently on Israeli courts.

 

The nation-state bill passed the Knesset in a 62-55 vote. Israel’s Druze community voiced concern over the bill. But President Reuven Rivlin assured a delegation “that is the basis of the state we founded – the Zionist movement in full partnership with all who live here in this good land, which is good for all of us and where we can exist in equality without any problem.”

 

Still, the bill’s passage prompted Stanford University SJP member Hamzeh Daoud, a residential assistant, to threaten to “physically fight” pro-Israel students. He later changed the wording in his Facebook post from “physically” to “intellectually” and noted that “I edited this post because I realize intellectually beating Zionists is the only way to go. Physical fighting is never an answer to when trying to prove people wrong.”

 

Both Daoud’s Facebook and Twitter accounts have been deactivated.

 

Most analyses conclude the law is more symbolic than substantial. It does nothing to change the rights of Israeli Arabs, although many are displeased at its recognition of Hebrew as the country’s official language, seeing it as downgrading Arabic.

 

People are free to criticize Israel and the bill. But it’s clear that groups like SJP and JVP will do anything to bash Israel and delegitimize its existence.

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Understanding “Israel – the Nation State” Basic Law

 

By Mida

19 Av 5778 – July 31, 2018

Jewish Press

 

{Originally posted to the MIDA website}

 

Feelings are running high on the latest addition to Israel’s Basic Laws or “constitution on the installment plan”, but I would like to try and shed a bit more light on the subject and a little less heat.

 

The Basic Law: Israel – The Nation State of the Jewish People, passed by the Israeli Knesset this week, declares that Israel is the nation-state of the Jewish people and determines specific matters which demonstrate the Jewish character of the nation. These include the county’s official language, the national anthem, the national flag, the state emblem, as well as the calendar along with holidays and days of rest. This is normal and appears in law in many democracies.

 

The special situation of the Jewish diaspora means that it also takes notice of the State’s connection to Jews abroad as well as policies on immigration and settlement.

 

It is important to stress that the law offers no privileges of any kind, nor does it reserve any particular rights, for individual Jews. It certainly does not deny any rights or privileges to individual non-Jews. All Israelis, regardless of the religion they follow or ethnic background, continue to enjoy all the human and civil rights customarily accorded to citizens of free countries. Those rights have not been diminished in any way by the passing of this law.

 

This new law seeks to codify the rights laid down in a much older document. The Mandate for Palestine, the international legal instrument, recognized the national rights of the Jewish people in our ancient homeland. The text of the Mandate includes, by reference, the Balfour declaration. That document reads:

 

“His Majesty’s Government view with favour the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people, and will use their best endeavours to facilitate the achievement of this object, it being clearly understood that nothing shall be done which may prejudice the civil and religious rights of existing non-Jewish communities in Palestine, or the rights and political status enjoyed by Jews in any other country.”

 

A few points arising from this text:

 

1. The only people recognized as having “national” rights in the Land of Israel are the Jews.

2. Non Jews in the Land of Israel are to enjoy protection of their civil and religious rights.

3. Jews throughout the Diaspora are to continue to enjoy the rights and political status of citizens of the countries they live in.

4. In addition, the Mandate also requires the facilitation of Jewish immigration and the close settlement by Jews on the land (Article 6).

 

The new law is clearly an application of the principles of the Mandate to the sovereign Jewish state:

 

1. It specifies how the state will express the national rights of the Jews.

2. It draws attention to the special role the State has to play in safeguarding the rights of Jews abroad.

3. It accepts the obligation of settling Jews on the Land as now falling on the Israeli state.

There are those who argue that the provisions of the Mandate and the Balfour declaration are irrelevant to the state created in Israel’s Declaration of Independence in 1948. It seems that the framers of Israel’s Declaration may have felt otherwise.

 

1. The Declaration references the recognition of Jewish national rights included in the Balfour Declaration and the Mandate.

2. It also refers to UNGA Resolution 181. Specifically that it, “required the inhabitants of Eretz-Israel to take such steps as were necessary on their part for the implementation of that resolution”.

3. The Declaration implies (rather strongly) that this “requirement” was binding on the Jews.

4. Resolution 181 explicitly positions itself to be the culmination of the Mandate.

What links the Balfour Declaration, the Mandate, UNGA Resolution 181 and the Declaration of Independence is that they all draw their legitimacy from the actualization of the rights of the Jews. I would go as far as to say that the legitimacy of the State of Israel itself is dependent on it fulfilling the national rights of the Jews.

 

I am finding it hard to understand how anyone who accepts the Mandate and the Balfour declaration that is contained in it, could have a problem with any of these points.

 

Of course, there are those who have never accepted the Declaration nor the Mandate and I would expect them to oppose the law simply because they oppose Israel’s basic legitimacy. Unfortunately, many people who do recognize the legitimacy of Jewish national rights in the Land of Israel seem to be troubled by the law, something which I find puzzling.

 

It is clear that the law does not contain a clause explicitly guaranteeing the rights of non-Jews and I can understand why some might see that as presenting potential problems for the future. In terms of the here and now though, the only mention of non-Jews in the law is to guarantee that the new law will not damage the status that the Arabic language has enjoyed up till now, despite no longer being an official language of the state.

 

(Interesting point to note is that the English language was also one of the three official languages of the State of Israel and the new law offers no guarantees for its status, but for some reason I don’t see Anglos up in arms about that!)

 

Why is there no formal minority rights clause in the law? One might hypothesize dark ulterior motives, but I think that it is quite as plausible to suggest that equality is already so entrenched in Israeli jurisprudence, that there is no need for it.

 

This new law does not stand on its own, but is part of the entire group of Basic Laws, each of which is supposed to be a chapter in the eventual constitution. The Basic Law: Human Dignity and Freedom along with The Basic Law: the Freedom of Occupation, lay out many (some would say too many!) individual rights and offers the necessary protection of the rights of individuals in Israel. Although all this is true, none of the Basic Laws explicitly addresses the issue of minority rights, i.e. of minority communities. Although Israeli Arabs are guaranteed the right to an Arabic language school system in which Arabic culture is taught, this promise is made only in “regular” legislation, not in any Basic Law.

 

Professor Moshe Koppel of Bar Ilan University has an interesting explanation which he presented in a Facebook post: “Since 1993, Israel’s Supreme Court has used the Basic Law: Human Dignity and Freedom to rule on the constitutionality of a variety of statutes and government policies involving Israel’s Jewish character, including laws regarding allocation of JNF land, the primacy of Hebrew as Israel’s language, rights to residency and citizenship, draft deferments and stipends of yeshiva students, and commerce on Shabbat. In principle, these cases called for delicate balance between Israel’s democratic character and its Jewish character, but in fact no such balance was achieved, precisely because Israel’s Jewish character, unlike its democratic character, is not anchored in any basic law. The proposed law is intended to address this asymmetry and to encourage a more sophisticated legal discourse regarding the tension between universal and national considerations.”

 

Whether one feels that the rights of non-Jews in Israel are already afforded sufficient protection in law or not, the new law only defines Israel’s Jewish character. If someone feels that there is a gap there that needs to be filled, then they should campaign for a Basic Law that adds the protections that they think necessary. Doing so is more likely to build a consensus than seemingly attacking the Jewish nature of the Jewish state.

 

(David Olesker is the Founder and Director of the Jerusalem Center for Communication and Advocacy Training)

Mida is a news and intellectual daily magazine, which aims to present the public with information and opinions not common in the Israeli media.

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The Land of the Jews is NON-Discriminatory!

John R. Houk

© August 2, 2018

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This Year in Jerusalem – explaining the new Basic Law: Israel – The Nation State

 

The American Israelite Homepage

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Final text of Jewish nation-state law, approved by the Knesset early on July 19

 

© 2018 THE TIMES OF ISRAEL, All Rights Reserved

 

About The Times of Israel

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Bogus Apartheid Claims Follow Passage of Israel Nation-State Law

 

Investigative Project on Terrorism Homepage

 

About The Investigative Project on Terrorism

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Understanding “Israel – the Nation State” Basic Law

 

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