Analysis News
Visit our Hebrew site, "Local Call" , in partnership with Just Vision.

Arabic in Israel

  • The Mizrahi author whose book Mahmoud Abbas wants to distribute

    Ishaq Bar-Moshe started writing books in Arabic two decades after he emigrated from Iraq to Israel. It was a radical choice, given that the language aroused deep antipathy in Israel  — but Bar-Moshe was undeterred. By Naomi Niddam A few weeks ago, a representative from the office of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas called Idit Shemer, an Israeli author, in Jerusalem. “We want to print a few copies of "Departing Iraq," by Mr. Ishaq Bar-Moshe,” said the voice on the phone. “Abu Mazen [Abbas’s nickname] is interested in distributing them at a conference for Arab leaders, which will take place soon in…

    Read More... | 3 Comments
  • Arabic was an official language in Israel for 70 years, 2 months, and 5 days

    You can look at the new Jewish Nation-State Law from two angles: the message it sends to Jews, and the message it sends to Palestinians — you don't belong here. Arabic was an official language of the State of Israel for 70 years, two months, and five days. As of July 19, 2018, it is no longer. [tmwinpost] There is no practical reason for the change, and, in fact, the “Jewish Nation-State Law,” which abolished Arabic as an official language, basically guarantees that Arabic will retain all the benefits of being an official language despite being stripped of the title.…

    Read More... | 21 Comments
  • How Arabic became a threat to 'social cohesion' in Israel

    The absurd arrest of a Palestinian worker who was mistranslated by the police is a reminder that Arabic has been turned into a tool to oppress the native population in this country. Israelis read Sunday morning that Israeli police had mistakenly arrested a Palestinian worker after relying on a Facebook translation of a post he had written a week earlier. The worker had uploaded a photo of himself standing next to a bulldozer with the caption, "good morning," which the police then misinterpreted to say, "attack them," leading to his arrest for incitement to violence. [tmwinpost] The incident exemplifies something about…

    Read More... | 3 Comments
  • Israeli cafe orders employees to stop speaking Arabic on the job

    A branch of Aroma Espresso Bar in central Israel tells its Arab workers that speaking their mother-tongue is offensive to some of the customers. By Yael Marom A branch of "Aroma Espresso Bar," one of Israel's most popular coffee chains, told its Arab workers last week that they are no longer allowed to speak Arabic at work, following customer complaints. "I am reminding you that our goal is to make our customers feel wanted, and not uncomfortable," wrote the franchise manager of the Kfar Saba branch, in central Israel, in a WhatsApp message sent to the workers last week. "It is…

    Read More... | 33 Comments