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  • No, democracy isn't the right of the majority to squelch dissent

    By Naomi Paiss To some, the controversy over the firing of Adar Cohen, the Education Ministry bureaucrat in charge of civics education, may be no more than a footnote in the cultural and political wars roiling Israel. In my professional position, running communications for the New Israel Fund, I might agree. My job requires me to sort through the multiple threats to democracy, civil rights and pluralism in Israel. So if someone asked me to advocate for one man who lost his job, I’d be dubious. But a confluence of the professional and personal leads me to confront the issues…

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  • The rabbis' racist letter: many words, little action

    While public figures in Israel condemned the latest rabbinical Fatwa against renting homes to Arabs, little to no action was taken against its authors. Also, some secular Jewish communities are introducing their own version of the racist letter Almost two weeks passed since dozens of Israeli rabbis – most of them civil servants, working for Israeli municipalities – signed a letter forbidding renting homes to Arabs. During this period, strong condemnations for the letter were heard from public figures, but little action was taken against the rabbis themselves. Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu spoke against the letter, and so did Knesset…

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