According to the proposed ‘Jewish Nation-State Law,’ Israel does not belong to Israeli citizens, more than 20 percent of whom are not Jewish. Instead, it is the state of the Jewish people, roughly half of whom are not even Israeli.
There is a form on the Israeli Interior Ministry’s website, where one can order duplicate and translated copies of a birth certificate. On that form is a drop-down menu, above which it is written: “Nationality.”
In that drop-down menu you will find a list of nationalities which — if one were to attempt to deduce from it how Israel defines nationality — defies all logic. The nationalities listed include ethnicities without their own states, states without distinct or exclusive nationalities/ethnicities, and long-defunct “minority rule” colonial constructs.
A small sampling includes: American, South African, Hongkonger, Lebanese, East German, Hebrew, Kabardian, Samarian, Rhodesian, Abkhazian, Kurdish
What you won’t find is the one nationality you might most expect to: “Israeli.” As absurd as it may sound, the State of Israel does not actually recognize an Israeli nationality. In fact, the state has on several occasions argued in court that no such a nationality exists.
(To be fair, speaking of things Israel refuses to exist, the Interior Ministry drop-down menu doesn’t include the “Palestinian” nationality either.)
That Israel does not acknowledge an Israeli nationality is crucial for understanding why a “constitutional amendment” currently being proposed by Netanyahu and his government — the Jewish Nation-State law — is so problematic.Read More