By Simon Fischler
The last two weeks have been difficult ones for us in Israel.
It started well, though. For a few moments we Israelis were allowed to enjoy the 63rd anniversary of the RE-FOUNDATION of our nation-state.
But celebrating another birthday of our liberal, democratic Jewish State was quickly flushed down the tubes when Syrian tyrant Bashar Al-Assad tried to deflect the ongoing civil uprising in his country onto Israel on Nakba Day.
Assad’s attempts against Israel began by busing 250 Arabs in from Um-Al Famm to Jaffa, courtesy of the Islamic Movement of Israel (Israel’s Muslim Brotherhood/Hamas)
Even with the Islamic Movement busing in people (which means also paying them to come), the best they could put together were 250 protesters -- NOTHING in comparison to the uprisings in neighboring Arab states.
Assad realized he was going to have to up the ante if he wanted the world to forget about the mass murders he was carrying out. Therefore on Nakba Day Assad exhorted his allies Hezbollah and Hamas to enter the fray against Israel. Hezbollah and Hamas obliged by also bussing protestors to Israel’s borders.
In each case there were no more than a couple hundred protestors. The numbers never got close to the thousands, tens of thousands and even hundreds of thousands we have seen in the Arab world.
Why were there so few protestors? Why did they not spiral out of control? Because, just as Benjamin Netanyahu said when he addressed the Congress of the United States of America, Israeli Arabs are free and enjoy equality like no other Arabs in Arab countries or the world in general.
If these people were not bussed in and paid by their Arab tyrant masters, no one would show up.
After ignoring the actions of Arab regimes towards their own citizens, and the complete failure of those regimes’ attempts to ignite the Arab population of Israel against their state, the Israeli daily Haaretz printed an interview with Omar Nasser, mayor of the Israeli Arab town Arabeh.
While Mubarak, Qadaffi, Assad and the Iranians are off MASS murdering their own people, the Arabs of Israel are allowed to protest safely and freely, but also to spit on the country that allows them this freedom. This was clearly demonstrated by the jaded interview with Omar Nasser.
Nasser called Netanyahu’s claims about the freedoms of Israel’s Arabs “false, misleading and unbearable hypocrisy.” He insists that Israel’s treatment of its Arab citizens should not be compared to how Arab leaders treat their own citizens, but to how Muslims and Arabs are treated in Western Europe or America and Canada.
Is Israel geographically situated in Europe? Is it a European country? No, so why should Israel be compared to European countries?
However, if that’s what Mr. Nasser wishes to do, let’s take a look.
* Arabs and Muslims cannot were Burkas, or headdresses in France. Laws strongly against the Muslim population of the French Republic are being enacted left and right.
* Far right, anti-Arab/Muslim political parties are proliferating and becoming strong, to the embarrassment of Liberal, left Europeans. Conservatism has reached the continent, mainly in response to Arab and Muslim immigration.
* The Arab and Muslim populations of France and, for that matter, nearly all of Western Europe are consigned to what any self-respecting European Jew would recognize as ghettos and discriminated against daily in myriad ways -- worse than anything in Israel.
* The Swiss have banned the building of minarets and are in the process of passing other laws that discriminate specifically against Muslims. The same can be said for virtually all western European nations, as they attempt to battle Islamic Fundamentalism.
In all of these countries a movement like Israel’s Islamic Movement would, without a doubt, be banned and considered a terrorist group.
Back now to Israeli Muslims. Before we touch on the 13 Arab Knesset members, or the freedoms of speech, travel and livelihood enjoyed by all Israeli Muslims, lets assess how much Israel’s Arab citizens contribute to their country.
Israeli Arabs do not serve in the Israel Defense Forces, nor must they complete National Service like their Jewish, Druze and Circassian CO-patriots. So, while the Arabs of Israel receive the benefits of Israel’s Universal Health Care, Social welfare system and all other rights given to Jewish, Druze, Circassian and Christian Israelis, they do nothing to fight against those who wish to destroy the very same institutions they enjoy.
If one looks at the reaction of the Israeli Arab community when the topic of land exchanges with the future Palestinian State comes up, you will know that Omar Nasser is intentionally attempting to delegitimize Israel.
There has been talk of Israel giving the future Palestinian State sovereignty over some Israeli Arab towns and villages and the Israeli Arabs cry out when they hear this. They cry out not because they will have to leave their homes; they won’t. they cry out because they want to remain Israeli; they know better than anyone that Israel will provide them freedoms that a Palestinian state will not.
What is eluding everyone outside Israel is the ability of the leaders (not the general population) of Israel’s Arab minority to disguise their own racism and hidden agenda against the state.
If a Jewish Israeli tried to buy a house in an Israeli Arab village, there would be no chance of it happening. If a Jewish Israeli did happen to live in an Israeli Arab town, they would be harassed until they packed up their bags and left.
This fact never gets any play because we here in Israel – like so many in the rest of the world -- are too busy being Politically Correct, which, in truth, simply means being too squeamish to “tell it like it is.”
To compound the situation, Israel’s Arab leaders often act in what would be classified as a treasonous manner towards the state that affords them such freedom, if this were anyplace other than Israel! Many call for the destruction of Israel and some have even been caught spying, as was the case with Asmi Bishara.
Arabeh Mayor Omar Nasser is wrong for making such statements against Israel, and he is wrong for delegitimizing her. Worse, Haaretz is wrong for printing such an interview without balancing it with a counter-viewpont.
Israel’s Arab minority needs to stop whining and attempting to delegitimize Israel. More importantly, this minority needs to make a decision: are they Israeli Arabs or Palestinian Arabs?