MEMO/Days of Palestine
An Israeli parliamentarian has expressed his support for formal apartheid, backing annexation of entire West Bank, but without its Palestinian inhabitants being granted the right to vote.
MK Miki Zohar, who is chair of the Knessetâs Special Committee for Distributive Justice and Social Equality, expressed his views in an interview with Haaretz newspaper.
âWhen we say to the Palestinians, âWe are giving you a state, letâs make peaceâ â itâs deceiving them,â Zohar told the paper.
âNo one is going to give them a state, not the left either. I am saying: Letâs cut this problem off before it begins and stop with the lies. Weâll tell them: âGuys, no state, live here with us, prosper, earn a living, educate your childrenâ.â
Asked whether he meant that Palestinians in an annexed West Bank would not vote in the Knesset elections, Zohar replied in the affirmative.
âWe must always maintain control over the mechanisms of the state, as the Jewish people that received this country by right and not by an act of charity.â
Over the years it is very possible the Arabs could become the majority here, and I cannot take this risk.
According to Zohar, such views are ânot extremeâ but ârealistic.â
He continued: âIn my opinion, he [the Palestinian] doesnât have the right to national identity, because he does not own the land of this country.â
âI want him as a resident by virtue of my own sense of fairness â because he was born here and lives here, I will not tell him to leave. Iâm sorry to say this, but they have one conspicuous liability: They werenât born Jews.â
With respect to Palestinians with Israeli citizenship, Zohar said: âThey will have to choose if they are loyal to the stateâ, based on three conditions: ânational service; recognition of the Israeli flag, which would fly above every public institution; and recognizing Israel as a Jewish and democratic state.â
âAnd this would not be the decision of an individual, but of a public authority. If they canât meet these criteria, they would no longer be able to vote for the Knesset.â