Israeli Arabs, who are Palestinians who remained in their towns and villages after the 1948 creation of Israel, are not a threat to the Jewish state. The real threat is Israel's racist insistence on maintaining the Jewishness of the state by any means.
The idea of maintaining a predominant Jewish majority, if not an all-Jewish population, is not new. It is inherent in the Zionist ideology and a continuation of the systematic expulsions and ethnic cleansing that continue today inside Israel proper and the occupied West Bank. Israel still refuses to acknowledge its original sin, let alone apologize for it. It continues to fulfill its dream through racist policies, territorial expansion, expropriation of lands and eviction of Palestinian inhabitants.
The rise of the Israeli right has reinforced racist attitudes and policies, which now have a more strident voice than ever. But it is wrong to assume that Avigdor Lieberman, the head of the right wing Yisrael Beiteinu Party, is responsible for resurgence of calls for evicting Palestinians from Israel. Lieberman, the controversial Russian immigrant, is clearer and more forthright than many other leaders from the left and center who share the same views.
Only a few months ago, Israeli foreign minister Tzipi Livni - a member of the "centrist" Kadima Party -- also implied that she preferred the transfer of what Arabs call the Palestinians of 1948 to areas under the jurisdiction of the Palestinian Authority. According to Israeli reports, Livni stated that it must be clear to everyone that the State of Israel is a national homeland for the Jewish people.
Israel has to realize that it cannot simply eliminate Palestinians or push them into cartons in their homeland. It escapes from its real moral dilemma - that of existing and thriving at the expense of Palestinians - by using military power and prowess to achieve its goals of a exclusive Jewish state.
The Arabs of Israel, or the Palestinians of 1948, are not the real threat. The real danger is that Israeli leaders cannot realize that Israel cannot be a democracy while reinforcing and cementing system based on apartheid and occupation.
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