Monday, October 11, 2010

Dear Danny

Dear Danny Ayalon,

Thanks for your enlightening Op-ed in the Jerusalem Post this morning. You've put all my fears about the loyalty oath bill to rest.

Your point that the oath is just like the American Pledge of Allegiance is spot on, and I'm glad to see that Yisrael Beiteinu is advocating the nuanced notions of citizenship of America in 1954. And I suppose the equivalence of "To the republic for which is stands" and "the State of Israel as a Jewish and democratic state" is obvious because standing for something and being something are clearly identical.

And thanks for your heartfelt warning at the end of the op-ed: "Those who disparage clearly describing Israel as the eternal aspiration of the Jewish people provide ample ammunition to those who seek the end of our national existence." Because nothing says Jewish and Democratic like accusations of treason for holding a different point of view.

Thanks for writing an op-ed which cuts to the chase, not once mentioning Israeli Arabs, Palestinians, or Christians. Omission is a strategy which has well served the cause of Zionism in the past. And thanks for naming names when you accuse three Arab members of parliament of wanting to undermine Israel's national existence. Especially considering the number of Israeli Arabs who express faith in the parliament in the first place, its important that we further alienate the few non-Jews in Israel who still bother trying to effect equality through democratic means.

Most importantly, I'm glad you and Avigdor Lieberman have been so proactive about correcting this long-standing problem in Israel's citizenship law. What more effective way to promote Israel's position as the Jewish democratic state than to force new immigrants to just say its the case. Saying something makes it true, especially for you and your friends, Danny Ayalon. Could you also just makes sure to say that Israel is secure? Considering the damage this bill does to Israeli national security we'll just need to take care of that side of things too. And could you say Hamas is defeated too please? Those kids in Sderot could really use a good night's sleep.

There are those who might argue that the best way would be for Israel to embody Jewish values and include non-Jews in the political process. That being a Jewish haven doesn't have to come at the expense of alienating those who are not Jewish. But minority rights are awfully expensive, and I'm glad to see Yisrael Beiteinu is taking a pragmatic and realistic stance on this issue. Cutting corners with cheap political stunts designed to alienate Arabs and weaken PM Netanyahu will mobilize your voter base. And what could be more democratic than that?

Best,
The Confused Sheikh
Camel's Nose Blog

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