Lieberman's party main message is “No citizenship without loyalty”," No rights without duties”. From the outset these requirements sound logical: After all, every state confines the right of citizenship according to its dominating values or interests. But Lieberman's message is not destined for aspiring Israelis (an option practically available only to immigrants Jews) but to actual Israeli citizens, a newspeak terminology which leaves many questions unanswered: How can you measure loyalty? Who will decide what loyalty is? In addition , we know from recent history that Afro American were denied for decades to exercise their Civil Rights in USA by requesting arbitrary criterion (such as reading tests, etc.) thereby circumventing formal equality.
I guess that Lieberman will not require hundreds of thousands of Israelis carrying a foreign Passport (
Arab "brotherhood" is rather limited (as have been demonstrated in the last war in
Other claim that
From a Jewish perspective the loyalty test is rather dangerous beyond its unmoral aspects. Jews were accused along history for "double loyalty", bearing the harshest and tragic consequences for these unfounded accusations. Will someone dare to question the loyalty of top Jewish politicians in the Western countries (US, France just to mention a few)?
Many people will claim that the comparison is inadequate: Jews were never really tied to "enemies" as Arab Israelis are linked to the Arab world. Historically, this argument is flawed: for example, in WWI Jews actually fought in all armies, Allies and Axis as well (the division even went through the Zionist movement .Just for an illustration young Ben Gurion - was enlisted to the British Army and M. Sharet - the future PM - was an officer in the Turkish army).
The most amazing aspect of Lieberman rise is the crippling acceptance of his ideas and the ambiguous response from the main parties, which penlights the long run erosion of basic democratic and human values. Twenty years ago Rabi Kahane and his Kakh movement were banned from participating in the elections for their explicit call for a massive transfer of Arab citizens from
We shall be able to rid ourselves of many of the pseudo-moral principles which have hag-ridden us for two hundred years, by which we have exalted some of the most distasteful of human qualities into the position of the highest virtues"
( JM Keynes, "Economic Possibilities for our Granchildren" 1930 )
Sunday, February 8, 2009
Lieberman and Israel do not cry anymore