Israel declares itself ‘nation-state of the Jewish people’

In any country the imposition of a two tier citizenship would be troubling enough, but in Israel it is more troubling because of Jewish history, where they have been severely subjugated as second class citizens or worse in different parts of the world.

The Middle East is complicated. Especially Israel. Giving Jews a special status above other citizens is unlikely to defuse tensions.

SMH:  Israeli law declares country the ‘nation-state of the Jewish people’

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel has long demanded that the Palestinians acknowledge his country’s existence as the “nation-state of the Jewish people.” On Thursday, his governing coalition stopped waiting around and pushed through a law that made it a fact.

In an incendiary move hailed as historic by Netanyahu’s right-wing coalition but denounced by centrists and leftists as racist and anti-democratic, Israel’s parliament enacted a law that enshrines the right of national self-determination as “unique to the Jewish people”— not all citizens.

The legislation, a “basic law”— giving it the weight of a constitutional amendment — omits any mention of democracy or the principle of equality, in what critics called a betrayal of Israel’s 1948 Declaration of Independence, which ensured “complete equality of social and political rights” for “all its inhabitants” no matter their religion, race or sex.

So the law isn a fundamental switch from Israel’s (modern) founding declaration.

With the political opposition too weak to mount a credible threat, and with the Trump administration providing a never-before-seen degree of US support, Netanyahu’s government, the most right-wing and religious coalition in Israel’s 70-year history, has been pressing its advantages on multiple fronts.

It has sought to exercise more control over the news media, erode the authority of the Supreme Court, curb the activities of left-wing advocacy groups, press ahead with moves that amount to de facto annexation of parts of the West Bank, and undermine police by trying to thwart or minimize the effect of multiple corruption investigations against the prime minister.

That is quite disturbing,

And as is common after further erosion of Palestinian rights, both sides turn to violence.

Haaretz: Gaza Escalation: Israel Launches Massive Attack After Hamas Snipers Fire at Troops

  • Four Hamas members killed in Israeli attack after snipers target Israeli soldiers
  • Netanyahu holding emergency discussion at army headquarters
  • Three rockets launched from Gaza, two intercepted by Iron Dome

More:

Golda Meir quote: One cannot and must not try to erase the past merely because it...

There is no such thing as a Palestinian people… It is not as if we came and threw them out and took their country. They didn’t exist. – Golda Meir

Regardless of that argument, they exist now, in Israel.