imc indymedia

Los Angeles Indymedia : Activist News

white themeblack themered themetheme help
About Us Contact Us Calendar Publish RSS
latest news
best of news




A-Infos Radio

Indymedia On Air

Dope-X-Resistance-LA List


IMC Network:

Original Cities africa: ambazonia canarias estrecho / madiaq kenya nigeria south africa canada: hamilton london, ontario maritimes montreal ontario ottawa quebec thunder bay vancouver victoria windsor winnipeg east asia: burma jakarta japan korea manila qc europe: abruzzo alacant andorra antwerpen armenia athens austria barcelona belarus belgium belgrade bristol brussels bulgaria calabria croatia cyprus emilia-romagna estrecho / madiaq euskal herria galiza germany grenoble hungary ireland istanbul italy la plana liege liguria lille linksunten lombardia london madrid malta marseille nantes napoli netherlands nice northern england norway oost-vlaanderen paris/Île-de-france patras piemonte poland portugal roma romania russia saint-petersburg scotland sverige switzerland thessaloniki torun toscana toulouse ukraine united kingdom valencia latin america: argentina bolivia chiapas chile chile sur cmi brasil colombia ecuador mexico peru puerto rico qollasuyu rosario santiago tijuana uruguay valparaiso venezuela venezuela oceania: adelaide aotearoa brisbane burma darwin jakarta manila melbourne perth qc sydney south asia: india mumbai united states: arizona arkansas asheville atlanta austin baltimore big muddy binghamton boston buffalo charlottesville chicago cleveland colorado columbus dc hawaii houston hudson mohawk kansas city la madison maine miami michigan milwaukee minneapolis/st. paul new hampshire new jersey new mexico new orleans north carolina north texas nyc oklahoma philadelphia pittsburgh portland richmond rochester rogue valley saint louis san diego san francisco san francisco bay area santa barbara santa cruz, ca sarasota seattle tampa bay tennessee urbana-champaign vermont western mass worcester west asia: armenia beirut israel palestine process: fbi/legal updates mailing lists process & imc docs tech volunteer projects: print radio satellite tv video regions: oceania united states topics: biotech

Surviving Cities africa: canada: quebec east asia: japan europe: athens barcelona belgium bristol brussels cyprus germany grenoble ireland istanbul lille linksunten nantes netherlands norway portugal united kingdom latin america: argentina cmi brasil rosario oceania: aotearoa united states: austin big muddy binghamton boston chicago columbus la michigan nyc portland rochester saint louis san diego san francisco bay area santa cruz, ca tennessee urbana-champaign worcester west asia: palestine process: fbi/legal updates process & imc docs projects: radio satellite tv
printable version - js reader version - view hidden posts - tags and related articles

Separate and Unequal in Israel

by Stephen Lendman Friday, May. 25, 2012 at 9:18 PM


Separate and Unequal in Israel

by Stephen Lendman

On May 23, Yousef Munayyer headlined his New York Times op-ed "Not All Israeli Citizens are Equal," saying:

Residing in Lod, Israel, he's an Arab citizen. His Palestinian wife lives in Nablus in the West Bank.

Israel separates them 30 miles apart. Discriminatory laws, "walls, checkpoints, settlements and soldiers" enforce it. Normal life is impossible. More on that below.

Palestinians face occupation repression. Arab Israeli citizens bear their own cross. Institutionalized intolerance harms them. Israel calls them fifth column and demographic threats.

All aspects of their lives are affected. Socioeconomic discrimination includes land policies, urban planning, housing, infrastructure, economic development, employment, education, healthcare, and personal safety.

Separate and unequal is policy. Arabs aren't wanted. Discriminatory laws target them. Fundamental rights are violated. Redress most often is impossible. Living free on their own land is denied. Emigration is encouraged. Perhaps forced relocations loom.

Non-Jews aren't wanted. Neither are refugees fleeing repression. Around 3,000 South Sudanese face expulsion. More on them below.

International law protects refugees and asylum seekers.

Article I of the 1951 UN Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees calls them:

"A person who owning to a well-founded fear of being persecuted for reasons of race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group or political opinion, is outside the country of their nationality, and is unable to or, owing to such fear, is unwilling to avail him/herself of the protection of that country."

Post-WW II, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) was established to help them.

To gain legal protection, they must:

• be outside their country of origin;

• fear persecution;

• be harmed or fear harm by their government or others;

• fear persecution for at least one of the above cited reasons; and

• pose no danger to others.

Israel's a signatory to the 1951 UN Convention. Nonetheless, Interior Ministry procedures and secret inter-ministerial determinations decide individual cases.

Compared to Western states, Israel accepts the fewest number of temporary or permanent refugees even though being legally and morally bound to help.

In recent years, thousands of South Sudanese refugees were admitted. Now they face deportation. Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein claims no legal obstacle prevents expelling them despite repressive conditions back home.

Human Rights Watch documented numerous security force violations. They include "unlawful killings, forcible community disarmament operations, as well as unlawful arrests and suppress opponents of the ruling party and independent journalists."

A Jerusalem District Court issued a temporary restraining order. Deportations are prohibited pending its ruling on a petition filed by five human rights organizations. It's on behalf of the refugees legally entitled to stay.

According to Tel Aviv University's Refugee Rights Clinic attorney Anat Ben-Dor:

"A humanitarian crisis is developing in South Sudan, which is expected to lead to extreme famine. In addition, the border conflicts with Sudan are continuing, so in these circumstances the decision to return the Sudanese to South Sudan is premature and irresponsible."

Israel breaches fundamental international law principles. Despite dangers refugees face back home, a Justice Ministry statement said they're no longer eligible for asylum.

Justice Minister Yaakov Neeman considers them illegal. He called all illegal migrants a "national plague."

The UN Office for Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs said South Sudan remains unstable. As a result, refugees deserve asylum status.

Returning must only be voluntary. Israel intends mass deportation. International law obligations and fundamental human rights considerations don't matter.

Munayyer described his own ordeal. Separation from his wife is painful. So is foreign travel. Ben-Gurion International Airport lies close to Lod. His wife holds a Palestinian ID card. She can't use it.

She's "relegated to flying from Amman, Jordan." Planning a trip together entails a "logistical nightmare. (It) reminds us of our profound inequality before the law at every turn."

Traveling to or from Amman, they're forced to use different bridges. They're located two hours apart. Crossing into Israel or the West Bank involves "humiliating waiting and questioning. The laws conspire to separate us."

Israeli legislation prohibits Palestinians from living in Israel.

Israel's Citizenship and Entry into Israel Law is discriminatory, unfair and illegal. It denies legal status to Palestinian spouses of Israeli citizens.

In May 2006, Israel's High Court rejected petitions opposing the law and did again in January 2012. It called it essential for national security. It also covers spouses living in designated "enemy states." Iran, Syria and Lebanon are targeted. Iraq was under Saddam Hussein.

The law has far reaching implications. Normal family life, equality and human dignity are denied. Adalah called the High Court's 2006 ruling a "violation of human rights and (failure) to provide a legal remedy (to) injured" Palestinian spouses and family members.

It upheld a "racist law that denies a person's fundamental constitutional rights on the basis of his or her national identity."

It went far beyond nationality, ethnicity, religion, and entry into Israel. It legitimized collective punishment. It's prohibited under international law. It also legitimized discrimination as policy. At the same time, it exposed Israel's undemocratic harshness.

Democracies grant equal rights to all citizens. Separate and unequal policies are prohibited. Judges ruling otherwise have no place on any court. Sitting on Israel's High one is a travesty of justice.

In his statement, Deputy Chief Justice Mishael Cheshin said:

Palestinians are "enemy nationals and as such constitute a risk group for the citizens and residents of Israel."

In his minority opinion, Chief Justice Aharon Barak disagreed, ruling:

"A democracy does not act this way.  A democracy does not impose a sweeping prohibition and thus divide its citizens from their spouses and not allow them to

conduct family life."

"A democracy does not impose a sweeping prohibition and thus leave its citizens with the option of living in the state without the spouse or leaving the state in order to conduct a proper family life."

"A democracy does not impose a sweeping prohibition and thus separate parents from their children."  

"A democracy does not impose a sweeping prohibition and thus discriminate between its citizens in their fulfillment of family life."

"Indeed, democracy cedes a certain degree of security in order to obtain an immeasurably larger degree of family life and equality."

"This is how a democracy acts in periods of peace and tranquility. This is how a democracy acts during periods of fighting and terror."

"It is precisely during these difficult periods when the strength of democracy is revealed. It is precisely in the difficult situation in which Israel is immersed today that Israeli democracy is being tested."

Israel fails every time. Palestinians suffer grievously.

Munayyer continued saying:

"Israelis who marry Americans or any non-Palestinian foreigners are not subject to this treatment."

Jews everywhere in the world immigrating to Israel are automatically afforded citizenship. Palestinians expelled from their land are prohibited from returning.

"Two generations after the Nakba, the effect of discriminatory Israeli policies still reverberates. Israel still seeks to safeguard its image by claiming to be a bastion of democracy that treats its Palestinian citizens well, all the while continuing illiberal policies that target this very population. There is a long history of such discrimination."

After Israel's "War of Independence," discriminatory laws were passed. Some authorized Palestinian land seizures.

The June 1948 Abandoned Areas Ordinance covered conquered territories. Israel's government got exclusive rights to expropriate freely. Palestinians were displaced and prohibited from returning. Land they owned was confiscated.

The September 1948 Area of Jurisdiction and Powers Ordinance revoked Palestinian rights. Henceforth they were subject to Israeli laws.

The March 1950 Absentees' Property Law (ABL) transfered Palestinian owner rights to a Custodian of Absentee Property. Under Israeli law, ownership rights were lost.

The July 1950 Development Authority (Transfer of Property) Law shielded Israel from accusations of having confiscated abandoned Palestinian land and everything on it.

Israel's Development Authority (DA) was established to buy, sell, lease, exchange, repair, build, develop and/or cultivate seized property. Only transactions between Jews or Jewish entities are allowed.

In July 1960, the Israel Lands Administration Law established an "Israel Lands Administration (ILA)."

Israel's Basic Law affirms that Israeli land ownership can't be transferred "by sale or any other manner." Structures and everything "permanently fixed to the land" are included.

Israeli laws and ILA policies prohibit Arabs from buying, leasing or using land exclusively reserved for Jews. Israel institutionalized plunder and discrimination. Historical injustices remain unaddressed.

Millions of Palestinians can't live free on their own land. "If this is not apartheid," said Munayyad, "then whatever it is, it's certainly not democracy."

Persecution also affects Arab citizens. Dozens of discriminatory laws harm them.

"For all the talk about" Israeli democracy, "until (its) leaders....recognize Palestinians as equals," reality will belie rhetoric.

Munayyer serves as the Jerusalem Fund's executive director.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago and can be reached at

His new book is titled "How Wall Street Fleeces America: Privatized Banking, Government Collusion and Class War"

Visit his blog site at and listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network Thursdays at 10AM US Central time and Saturdays and Sundays at noon. All programs are archived for easy listening.

Report this post as:

Local News


lausd whistle blower A10 11:58PM

Website Upgrade A10 3:02AM

Help KCET and UCLA identify 60s-70s Chicano images A04 1:02PM

UCLA Luskin: Casting Youth Justice in a Different Light A02 11:58AM

Change Links April 2018 A01 11:27AM

Nuclear Shutdown News March 2018 M31 6:57PM

Join The Protest Rally in Glendale on April 10, 2018! M29 7:00PM

Join The Protest Rally in Glendale on April 10, 2018! M29 6:38PM

Spring 2018 National Immigrant Solidarity Network News Alert! M19 2:02PM

Anti-Eviction Mapping Project Shows Shocking Eviction Trends in L.A. M16 5:40PM

Steve Mnuchin video at UCLA released M15 12:34AM

Actress and Philanthropist Tanna Frederick Hosts Project Save Our Surf Beach Clean Ups M06 12:10PM

After Being Told He's 'Full of Sh*t' at School Event, Mnuchin Demands UCLA Suppress Video M02 11:44AM

Resolution of the Rent Strike in Boyle Heights M01 6:28PM

What Big Brother Knows About You and What You Can Do About It M01 3:30PM

Step Up As LAPD Chief Charlie Beck Steps Down F14 2:44PM

Our House Grief Support Center Hosts 9th Annual Run For Hope, April 29 F13 12:51PM

Don’t let this LA County Probation Department overhaul proposal sit on the shelf F13 11:04AM

Echo Park Residents Sue LA Over Controversial Development F12 8:51AM

Former Signal Hill police officer pleads guilty in road-rage incident in Irvine F09 10:25PM

Calif. Police Accused of 'Collusion' With Neo-Nazis After Release of Court Documents F09 7:14PM

Center for the Study of Political Graphics exhibit on Police Abuse posters F07 9:50AM

City Agrees to Settle Lawsuit Claiming Pasadena Police Officer Had His Sister Falsely Arre F04 3:17PM

Professor's Study Highlights Health Risks of Urban Oil Drilling F04 12:42PM

Claims paid involving Pasadena Police Department 2014 to present F04 10:52AM

Pasadenans - get your license plate reader records from police F03 11:11PM

LA Times Homicide Report F03 1:57PM

More Local News...

Other/Breaking News

Book Available about Hispanics and US Civil War by National Park Service A19 5:52PM

The Shortwave Report 04/20/18 Listen Globally! A19 4:01PM

The Republican 'Prolife' Party Is the Party of War, Execution, and Bear Cub Murder A19 11:48AM

Neurogenèse involutive A18 9:21AM

Paraphysique de la dictature étatique A16 10:13AM

Book Review: "The New Bonapartists" A16 3:45AM

The West Must Take the First Steps to Russia A14 12:25PM

Théorie générale de la révolution ou hommage à feu Mikhaïl Bakounine A14 3:30AM

The Shortwave Report 04/13/18 Listen Globally! A12 3:50PM

“Lost in a Dream” Singing Competition Winner to Be Chosen on April 15 for ,000 Prize! A12 3:48PM

The World Dependent on Central Banks A12 4:43AM

Ohio Governor Race: Dennis Kucinich & Richard Cordray Run Against Mike DeWine A11 9:40PM

March 2018 Honduras Coup Again Update A10 10:52PM

Apologie du zadisme insurrectionnel A10 3:33PM

ICE contract with license plate reader company A10 1:14PM

Palimpseste sisyphéen A09 11:23PM

Black Portraiture(S) IV: The Color of Silence...Cuba No...Cambridge Yes A09 5:32AM

Prohibiting Micro-Second Betting on the Exchanges A09 4:18AM

Prosecutors treat Muslims harsher than non-Muslims for the same crimes A08 10:33PM

Amy Goodman interview on cell phone safety A08 10:29PM

Mesa, Arizona police officer kills unarmed white man A08 9:50PM

Israeli leaders should be prosecuted for war crimes A08 9:48PM

Paraphysique de l'autorité A08 12:11AM

Two Podcasts on fbi corruption A06 10:13PM

Fbi assassins assault & try to kill DAVID ATKINS A06 7:29PM

EPA Head Scott Pruitt: Of Cages And Sirens A06 2:15PM

The Shortwave Report 04/06/18 Listen Globally! A05 4:25PM

Nicaraguas Conflic with native Peoples on the Caribbean Coast Near Bluefields in Decade80 A05 12:14PM

More Breaking News...
© 2000-2018 Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Unless otherwise stated by the author, all content is free for non-commercial reuse, reprint, and rebroadcast, on the net and elsewhere. Opinions are those of the contributors and are not necessarily endorsed by the Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Running sf-active v0.9.4 Disclaimer | Privacy