Biden: Israel right to stop Gaza flotilla from breaking blockade

The chief Justice thinks there is violation of rights against Arab citizens of Israel:

Israel’s High Court has narrowly upheld a law denying Palestinians from the West Bank and Gaza married to Israeli citizens the right to live in the country with their spouses.

The judges voted by six to five not to cancel a four-year-old amendment to the Citizenship Law which outlaws “family unification” in Israel between Palestinians and Arab citizens of Israel.

It was passed as a one-year emergency measure in 2002 on the ground that it was needed to protect Israeli security. But the amendment, described yesterday by the Knesset member Ran Cohen, of the left-wing Meretz party, as “rooted in racism”, has been renewed every year since then.

Israel’s Chief Justice, Aharon Barak, sided with the minority on the bench, declaring: “This violation of rights is directed against Arab citizens of Israel. As a result, therefore, the law is a violation of the right of Arab citizens in Israel to equality.”

Muad el-Sana, an Israeli Arab lawyer who is married to a Palestinian woman from the West Bank town of Bethlehem and works for Adalah, one of the agencies bringing the case, declared: “This is a very black day for the state of Israel and also a black day for my family and for the other families who are suffering like us. The government is preventing people from conducting a normal family life just because of their nationality.”

Tell me again that bit about all arabs living equally under the law in Israel.

If that was so, LGBT people wouldn’t enjoy the rights they do in Israel. Pride marches in Tel Aviv are far safer than the Moscow equivalent for example.
Israel wouldn’t be such a socially liberal country if it was a theocratic instrument of orthodoxy.

It is a theocratic instrument of Orthodoxy according to the State Department Human Rights Reports On Israel And The Occupied Territories. Here are some exerpts:

  1. "Jews can marry only in Orthodox Jewish services, although the great majority of Jewish Israelis are not Orthodox. Civil marriages, marriages of some non-Orthodox Jews, marriages in non-Orthodox ceremonies, or marriage to a non-Jew must take place outside the country to be legal…Many Jewish citizens objected to exclusive Orthodox rabbinic control over aspects of their personal lives. Approximately 310,000 citizens who immigrated, either as Jews or as family members of Jews, are not considered Jewish by the Orthodox Rabbinate. They cannot be married, divorced, or buried in Jewish cemeteries within the country. "

  2. “The government implemented policies including marriage, divorce, education, burial, and observance of the Sabbath based on Orthodox Jewish interpretation of religious law, and allocations of state resources favored Orthodox Jewish institutions.”

  3. “The government uses a separate, more rigorous standard based on Orthodox Jewish criteria to determine the right to full citizenship, entitlement to government financial support for immigrants, the legitimacy of conversions to Judaism performed within the country, and Jewish status for purposes of personal and some civil status issues.”

  4. “Foreign tourists suspected of being Messianic Jews, belonging to religious minorities, or of being “missionaries” were detained and sometimes refused entry into the country at the airport. The JIJ and some religious leaders claimed that many cases involved direct questions of religious affiliation and beliefs. There were a number of press reports that the MOI inserted notations into its border control computers to identify alleged “missionaries,” influenced by Yad L’Achim’s antimissionary work. According to JIJ, the MOI has forced some visitors to sign a pledge to abstain from missionary activity as a precondition of release, and on March 13, required in addition a 189,199 NIS ($50,000) bail from a Christian family visiting from Hong Kong.”

  5. “As in past years, ultra-Orthodox Jews in some neighborhoods of Jerusalem and other ultra-Orthodox enclaves periodically harassed or assaulted women whose appearance they considered immodest. The public bus service operated sex-segregated transportation for some Haredi Jews. Some Haredi passengers also tried to impose sex segregation on some mixed buses. According to press reports, women who refused to sit in the rear of such buses were regularly harassed.”

  6. “On December 31, the Jerusalem Post reported on Haredi insulting and spitting at priests and nuns, and defacing with graffiti and throwing garbage and dead cats at monasteries.”

  7. “While it is illegal to destroy books or icons deemed holy by a religious community or to incite religious prejudice, there were no indictments as of year’s end in the May 2008 public burning of hundreds of Christian Bibles by residents of the Tel Aviv suburb of Or Yehuda.”

  8. “During the year the Israel Land Fund NGO continued its program to purchase Arab land throughout Israel and market it to Jewish buyers, including in the diaspora; the organization claimed that all the land belonged to Jewish people and described as a “danger” the purchase of Jewish-owned lands by non-Jews.”

  9. “The other half of the country’s Bedouin lived in at least 46 unrecognized villages, which did not have water and electricity and lacked educational, health, and welfare services. The unrecognized villages, made up mostly of tents and shacks, evolved as a result of the government’s refusal to recognize Bedouin land claims based on traditional usage prior to the establishment of the state.”

I hate to use a tu quoque argument, but why the double standard concerning human rights abuses in Arab or Muslim countries? Do you expect more from Israel than the numerous Muslim and shar’ia based governments, with far greater abuses against minority Christians, Jews, etc, and if so, why??

Israel has its problems, but as the region goes, it has a far better record than its neighbors.

Thats a very good question. Why does Israel get away with committing horrendous human rights abuses and violations of international law while it’s Arab and Muslim counterparts are slapped with sanctions and/or invaded for less?


Are you familiar with Islamic jurisprudence, and the modern application of shar’ia? We’ve invaded Pakistan, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, etc because conversion from Islam to Christianity is a capitol offense? Because blasphemies “against Islam or the Qu’ran”, homesexuality, infidelity (except in cases of Muslim/Muslim infidelity) are punishable by death? Are Palestinian Arabs forbidden from serving in the Knesset, repairing churches, etc, like Christians are in Egypt?

The history of human rights abuses spans Islam’s entire history.
But of course, I’m sure you buy in to the myth of a pluralistic Islamic history.

Here, you can compare/contrast the findings regarding Israel:

Yes, really. Read the State Department Human Rights Reports.

Per the State Department Human Rights Reports, Israeli Human Rights abuses are more aggregious, and " it’s Arab and Muslim counterparts are slapped with sanctions and/or invaded for less"?

I’m guessing you didn’t read any of the reports in the link I provided.

You obviously haven’t read any of the reports on Israel and the Occupied Territories.

I have. It still doesn’t answer my question.

A simple “I don’t care about human rights abuses in Muslim countries, only in Israel and the Occupied Territories” might be a little more honest.

You’re full of it. As I said, Arab and Muslim nations get slapped with sanctions for their human rights abuses. Israel gets $3 billion for them.

Actually, you’re full of it.

What type of sanctions have Saudi Arabia, Pakistan or Egypt been slapped with? Egypt is the 2nd largest recipient of aid, Pakistan is 4th.

Since it would seem that you support sanctions against those nations, as I do, do you also support sanctions against Israel for commiting the same crimes and worse?

Two fallacies here: 1. I support sanctions by pointing out there are no sanctions against these countries. 2. Israel commits “the same crimes and worse”, per the State Department Human Rights Reports you mention.

All I would like to see is some type of level criticism regarding Israel and its neighbors, and human and religious rights abuses.

I have asked:

“Do you expect more from Israel than the numerous Muslim and shar’ia based governments, with far greater abuses against minority Christians, Jews, etc, and if so, why??”

And stated:

"Israel has its problems, but as the region goes, it has a far better record than its neighbors.

You seem unwilling or unable to address these issues, given the context of the State Department reports.

Don’t attempt to change the subject. The issue here is ISRAEL. Besides, I’ve already stated that I support sanctions against the nations you mentioned.

I have already addressed them but I’ll do it again. First of all, your assertion that legal and societal abuses of religious minorities are greater in Arab and Muslim countries than in Israel is incorrect and this fact is demonstrated in every State Department Human Rights report on Israel and the Occupied Territories. The same goes for your assertion regarding human rights abuses. I don’t have greater expectations for Israel than I do any other nation.

Well, I could take your word for it, but maybe I’ll just quote the reports directly.

We could start with the summaries: From you link on Israel:

The government generally respected the human rights of its citizens, although there were problems in some areas. There were several high-profile cases involving corruption by political leaders. Institutional, legal, and societal discrimination against Arab citizens, Palestinian Arabs, non-Orthodox Jews, and other religious groups continued, as did societal discrimination against persons with disabilities. Women suffered societal discrimination and domestic violence. The government maintained unequal educational systems for Arab and Jewish students. While trafficking in persons for the purpose of prostitution greatly decreased in recent years, trafficking for the purpose of labor remained a problem, as did abuse of foreign workers.


The Constitution provides for freedom of belief and the practice of religious rites, although the Government places restrictions on these rights in practice. Islam is the official state religion, and the principles of Shari’a (Islamic law) are the primary source of legislation.

The status of respect for religious freedom by the Government declined somewhat during the reporting period, based on the failure to investigate and prosecute perpetrators of increased incidents of sectarian violence. However, there were some positive developments: actions by the courts and the Ministry of Interior that opened the door for the possibility that all of the country’s Baha’is would eventually be issued national identification documents that contain a dash or the term “other” in the religious affiliation field. Also, the Court of Cassation granted a Coptic Christian mother custody of her two sons despite their father’s conversion to Islam.

Which one would you say has the greater “legal and societal abuses of religious minorities”?

In the context of the FULL report; Israel. Also, what you convieniently omitted was the abuse of non-citizens in the Occupied Territories.

You provided specific examples from Israel. I will do the same for Egypt, Pakistan, and Saudi Arabia. I was just quoting the introduction.

I think that most will find “your assertion that legal and societal abuses of religious minorities are greater in Arab and Muslim countries than in Israel” to be true.

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