“The State of Israel will not last forever in its present form.”
For this, the Lib Dem Whip is withdrawn. For a statement of the obvious.
About 14,000 Jews left Israel annually between 1990 and 2005. Half of Israelis aged between 14 and 18 express the desire to live elsewhere. A huge percentage of Israelis holds, or plans to inquire about obtaining, foreign nationality. The Berlin synagogue has 12,000 members, and there are now perhaps 55,000 Jews in Poland, many of whom are immigrants from Israel. Curzon was right when he bemoaned the Balfour Declaration on the grounds that the “advanced and intellectual” Jews would have no desire to live in the Middle East. They cannot wait to go home.
The screeching of Britain’s Likud supporters and worse cannot hide the fact that the Jewish Chronicle has to reflect mainstream Anglo-Jewish opinion or go out of business, that the Board of Deputies of British Jews has to reflect mainstream Anglo-Jewish opinion or its members would not be re-elected, and so on. The tyranny of those who shout the loudest is coming to an end. Not a moment too soon.
Desperately, Israel is instead flying in Russians who refuse to eat kosher food and who insist on taking their Israeli Defence Force oaths on the New Testament alone, Russian Nazis, East Africans who have invented a religion based on the Old Testament brought by Christian missionaries, Peruvian Indians, absolutely anyone at all. Even the Pashtun are now classified as a Lost Tribe with a view to airlifting them to Israel in future, since at least they are not Arabs.
Such Jewish births as there still are, are largely and increasingly to ultra-Orthodox who so disdain the Zionist State that they will use physical force against its teenage conscripts of both sexes. Their desire to live in the Land of Israel is manifestly quite separate from any desire to live in the State of Israel, which is presumably why, settled on the West Bank, they do not do so. One cannot help feeling that they and the inhabitants of Umm al-Fahm ought to have been asked each other’s questions.
If Israel does not want to become a haven for Russian Nazis, then she needs to repeal the Law of Return, declaring that she is now a settled culture and society in her own right, and precluding any wildly impracticable demand for a corresponding right on the part of Palestinian refugees or their descendants. The people who will do anything for Israel except live there, and who throw their weight around in demanding policies that suit their prejudices expressed from comfortable berths thousands of miles away, can thus be told where to go, or not to bother trying to go.
If there cannot be a Palestinian State, contrary to the position of the last Republican President of the United States, then with whom and with what have the Israelis ever been negotiating? Those interlocutors do not seek recognition of a Muslim state; on the contrary, the Palestinian Authority already operates a Christian quota without parallel in Israel, though corresponding to similar arrangements in Jordan, Lebanon, Syria and Iran. They do not even seek recognition of an Arab state.
Ever since 1993, they have recognised Israel within her borders before 1967, and, although they ought also to claim the territory to the east that a Palestinian State would rapidly come to include, they seek nothing more than recognition of Palestine within the territory captured in that year, the home of everyone who lives there, and if anything an emerging or emerged Orthodox Jewish refuge from godless Zionism. The only problem is with recognising Israel as “a Jewish State”, condemning a fifth of the population, including the world's most ancient Christian communities, to the second class citizenship from which the Israeli Constitution theoretically protects them, however different the practice may be.
Israel needs to move to very extensive devolution to the very local level, Jewish or Arab, religious or secular, Muslim or Christian, and so forth. She needs three parliamentary chambers, each about one third of the size of the present one, with one for the ultra-Orthodox, one for the Arabs, and one for everyone else, the ultra-Orthodox and the Arab being already identified in law because of their arrangements in relation to military service. All legislation would require the approval of all three chambers. Each chamber would elect a Co-President, all three of whom would have to approve all legislation and senior appointments, as well as performing ceremonial duties.
Each chamber would be guaranteed a Minister in each department and at least a quarter of Cabinet posts. Yiddish would be recognised as an official language, the quid pro quo for recognising all the many currently unrecognised villages in the Galilee and the Negev. The alliance necessary to pull this off would take an awful lot of effort. But two peoples facing nothing less than denaturalisation could very well be prepared to make that amount of effort. The other lot should have had more children, or bothered to move there from places like London and New York. But they did not.
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