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Arab-Israeli votes (archives) Photo: Reuters
Arab-Israeli votes (archives) Photo: Reuters
 
 

'Racism' or extinction

Op-ed: Most Arab citizens have it pretty good; prefer living in Israel than in any Arab country

Dan Calic
Published: 06.08.13, 12:32 / Israel Opinion

Once again we hear voices crying out that Israel is a "racist" state. Should we be surprised? Not really. Why is it that every other group of people can have at least one national homeland where they are the clear majority? Yet, if the same privilege is accorded to Jews it's called "racist," or the other famous term - "apartheid state."

 

Israel is located in the center of the Middle East. This region is comprised of 22 Arab countries, which cover over five million square miles, with a combined population of more than 350 million people, over 90% of whom are Muslim. The 6+ million Jews who live in Israel make up roughly 1.7% of the region's population, so the Arabs enjoy an overwhelming majority of the regional ethnicity.

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The Jews and Israel have been under constant threat of annihilation since the day independence was declared in May 1948. Have the 350 million Arabs lived under such a threat from Israel for the past 65 years?

 

Within Israel itself, slightly over 20% of the population is Arab. They enjoy all the benefits of citizenship. They vote, own homes, businesses, property, serve in the Knesset and Supreme Court. Plus, they are excused from serving in the army. Is there a single Arab country where Jews enjoy these same rights? Not one.

 

The majority of Arab-Israeli citizens will tell you they have it pretty good, and would prefer living in Israel than in an Arab country. Moreover, a couple of years ago, when the PA threatened to annex eastern Jerusalem, the Israeli Office of Immigration was flooded with Arabs wanting to apply for Israeli citizenship. What does that tell you?

 

So why all the talk of racism? Some may say Israel needs to be more "democratic." Well, in fact, everyone in Israel gets to vote. So why the complaints?

 

It seems the problem is pretty easy to identify. The basis for the complaints can be based on only one thing: Jews are the majority and want to remain the majority.

Danes are the majority in Denmark, Swiss are the majority in Switzerland, Muslims are the majority in 22 countries, but no one is accusing any of these countries of racism. Yet if six million Jews are the majority in a country which is the size of New Jersey this is deemed "racist," one cannot help but wonder what truly motivates those who make such accusations.

 

Israel is a democracy which among other things allows freedom of speech. Thus, those who voice such complaints are allowed to and are protected under the law. Would Jews be allowed similar privilege as citizens of Arab countries? Hardly.

 

I think the Arab citizens of Israel who complain don't know or appreciate how good they have it. They should be thankful for the right to speak out without the police banging down their door and dragging them off to a dark jail cell to be held without trial.

 

If Israel is seen as "racist" because it's the only country in the world where Jews are the majority, let the accusations come, and consider the source of the accusers.

If Israel acquiesces, the Jewish nation becomes extinct, which is precisely what the accusers prefer.

 

Dan Calic is a writer, history student and speaker. See additional articles on his Facebook page

 

 

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