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The uncomfortable context of Israel's book ban

The decision to prevent high schools from teaching a Jewish-Palestinian love story might sound like an innocent attempt at promoting Jewish continuity. In fact, it’s the sound of Israel’s extreme right going mainstream.

Illustrative photo of children in a library. (photo: Shutterstock.com)

Illustrative photo of children in a library. (photo: Shutterstock.com)

Israel’s Education Ministry announced Wednesday that it would ban Israeli high schools from teaching a novel about a love affair between a Jewish woman and a Palestinian man.

The decision was made despite the fact that the book, Dorit Rabinyan’s “Gader Haya,” was recommended for use in advanced literature classes by numerous bodies — including a professional committee of academics and educators — at the request of a number of teachers. Education Minister Naftali Bennett has backed the ban.

By preventing Israeli teenagers from reading the book, the ministry is hoping to instill in them the notion that “intimate relations” between Jews and non-Jews threaten what it calls “a separate identity.” In doing so, the ministry charged with deciding the content of Israelis’ educational curriculum has gone beyond the scope of its responsibilities and is now actively trying to influence Jewish students’ romantic decisions.

Gader Haya is far from the first Israeli novel taught in high schools to tell the story of Jews who fall in love outside the religion — sometimes even with Arabs.

Jewish Home chairman Naftali Bennett campaigning. (Yotam Ronen/Activestills.org)

Jewish Home chairman Naftali Bennett campaigning. (Yotam Ronen/Activestills.org)

To be sure, the Education Ministry’s decision has very little to do with the novel in question, and it is no coincidence that the ban pertains specifically to a book featuring a love story between a Jewish woman and a Palestinian man. This is a trope that has become synonymous in Israel with the patriarchal, racist idea that Jewish women must be protected from the savage Arab — always on the prowl for his next victim — whom he seeks to convert to Islam and steal away to his village.

If this sounds like exaggeration, it is not. A 2007 poll revealed that over half of Israelis view the marriage of a Jewish woman to an Arab man equal to national treason. Considering the country’s rightward shift over the past decade, that has likely become even more entrenched.

The Education Ministry’s decision is all the more disturbing when we consider the fact that polls consistently show that the majority of both Jewish and Arab citizens oppose intermarriage. Novels that allegedly encourage miscegenation should thus be of no threat to a population actively opposed to marrying outside the religion. So what gives?

File photo of Lehava leader Benzi Gopstein with his supporters at a right-wing protest. (Photo by Keren Manor/Activestills.org)

File photo of Lehava leader Benzi Gopstein with his supporters at a right-wing protest. (Photo by Keren Manor/Activestills.org)

The past few years have seen the rise of anti-miscegenation politics in Israel, most prominently by Lehava — an organization run by radical settler Benzi Gopstein, who most recently called for expelling the “blood sucking” Christians from the country. What started as a fringe group seeking to convince Jewish women to end their relationships with Arab partners — often using real violence against the man — has morphed into self-styled brigades that roam the streets of Jerusalem looking for Palestinians to attack. The logic of Lehava’s anti-miscegenation activities is undergirded by the total dehumanization of the Palestinian man, to the point that he remains a target even when he is uninvolved with Jewish women.

On the face of it, the decision to ban Rabinyan’s novel could seem like an innocent attempt at molding the minds of young Israeli Jews toward a future of Jewish perpetuity. In reality, however, the man in charge of our children’s education is now adopting the rhetoric of Israel’s most unabashedly vile racists. This is how the extreme right — the one we are repeatedly told is on the margins of Israeli society — becomes mainstream.

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    1. Merkava

      Edo, of course the leftists are not comfortable teaching about a love affair between Muslim Arab women and a non-Muslim men. The leftists are afraid of doing that, because the schools will be boycotted by the Muslim communities, there will be violence, rioting and accusations of racism from Muslim Arabs. Muslims forbid inter-marriage between Muslims and non Muslims. Muslim women are considered to have dishonored themselves and their families if they have love afire with non Muslim men and are killed by their family members.

      But the leftist are quite comfortable with teaching about a love affair between a Jewish woman and a Muslim Arab to Jewish children in Jewish schools.

      This is the kind of leftist dishonesty, hypocrisy and disingenuousness that most people have come to see through and reject and that feeds people like Benzi Gopstein.

      Anyone who converts to Judaism is free to marry any Jewish woman/man he or she so desires, if she or he desires him or her as well, and it does not matter if the convert is African, Arab, Asian or European. It is not about racial discrimination. It is about protecting Judaism from the real dangers of assimilation.

      Reply to Comment
      • Felix Reichert

        Nice story that you made up there.
        Or didn’t you? If not, if you’re not lying out of your ass again, as always, I’m sure you can give ONE example for your claim?

        Reply to Comment
        • Merkava

          “ It goes without saying that the marriage of a Muslim woman to a non-Muslim man is one of the main taboo issues in debates on Islam. According to a broad consensus religiously sterile, a Muslim woman is formally forbidden to marry a non-Muslim man regardless of his religion, WHILE a Muslim man is allowed to get married to a non Muslim woman, mainly a Christian or a Jew, considered by the Islamic schools as “People of the Book”

          http://www.asma-lamrabet.com/articles/what-does-the-qur-an-say-about-the-interfaith-marriage/

          BTW

          I am sure you are smart enough to do your own research about “honor killings”. It occurs in Germany as well where you CLAIM you come from!

          Reply to Comment
      • Felix Reichert

        By the way:
        Nice attempt to downplay and distract from what is a decision by an Israeli ministry clearly based on… racism. And nothing else.

        “But the others do it too! Bohoo!
        Of course I don’t have a shred of evidence for my claim, but I’m sure they do!”

        Reply to Comment
        • Merkava

          When you are able to tell the difference between ‘race’ and ‘religion’, maybe there might be something to talk about. Your logic is one of the main reasons Islamists like you are not considered extremely intelligent.

          Reply to Comment
      • Felix Reichert

        And there’s a “real danger” of Jews being assimilated into Muslim culture, converting to Islam in large numbers? In today’s political climate`

        Are you fucking serious? Or are you just desperately grasping for straws?

        How delusional can a person be? If he’s a Zionist there seems to be no limit.

        Reply to Comment
        • Merkava

          Deal with the anti-assimilation teachings and practices of your own Islam and Muslim practices FIRST. After that deal with the anti-assimilation teachings and practices of the Christians, Hindus, etc. After that, we will then talk about Jewish anti-assimilation teaching.

          Don’t be such a delusional hypocrite, Felix Reichert.

          Reply to Comment
    2. Carmen

      Will they also be banning “Romeo and Juliet”?. This move by the cringe-worthy Bennett will surely have the unintended effect of making “the other” more appealing than they already are because of the whole vibe of “forbidden fruit” that is so tantalizing to most of us, especially young people. It plugs right into the desires of most young people to do exactly the opposite of what their parents or society wishes. This current oppressive atmosphere of racial hatred, the paranoia and fear of “the other” will hopefully eventually blow up in the faces of Bennett et al. Bizarrely, Israeli television regularly airs programs about the civil rights struggle in the USA and Nelson Mandela – talk about cognitive dissonance. Will the book burning(s) take place before or during Lag B’Omer?

      Reply to Comment
      • Merkava

        “Will they also be banning “Romeo and Juliet”?

        YOU Muslims have already banned “Romeo and Juliet”. Intermarriage between Muslim women and non Muslim men is strictly forbidden. “Love affair” between a Muslim woman and a non Muslim man means a death sentence for the Muslim woman, who will be murdered by her own father and/or JUNIOR brother she herself babysitted, and/or her own senior brother she grew up with and or her own mother or uncle! Sometimes the just cut her throat; sometimes the poor lady is raped by her killers BEFORE being killed!!

        See my response to Felix Reichert. If you need more sources, you just say it.

        Your own Muslim practices are simply barbaric. Deal with that FIRST, moron, before hallucinating about teaching Jewish children about “love affairs with Muslim men” in Jewish schools.

        Reply to Comment
    3. Carmen

      Then go back to patrilineal descent. Unless it’s just about controlling women?

      Reply to Comment
    4. “May sound innocent” ??? Ummmmm. To whom? No, it does not sound innocent, it sounds like what it is, pure unadulterated racism, made into official israeli policy, on yet one MORE level.

      Reply to Comment
      • Merkava

        See my first post in the link you posted. It debunks your idiotic claims.

        In your own Islam, Muslim communities and countries, intermarriage between Muslim women and non Muslim men is strictly forbidden. “Love affair” between a Muslim woman and a non Muslim man means a death sentence for the Muslim woman, who will be murdered by her own father and/or JUNIOR brother she herself babysitted, and/or her own senior brother she grew up with and or her own mother or uncle! Sometimes the just cut her throat; sometimes the poor lady is raped by her killers BEFORE being killed!!

        Maybe we should start teaching Muslim Arab children about “love affairs between Muslim Arab women and non Muslim men in Muslim schools and countries”? Maybe we should start teaching Catholic/Christian children about “love affairs between Catholic/Christian women and Muslim men” in Catholic/Christian schools and countries?

        Ya support that, or, are you just fixated on Jews and Jewish women alone and confirming what a hypocrite you are?

        Reply to Comment
    5. Carmen

      To call someone “Muslim” as if it were an insult is the desperate actions of miserable people. People who’ll talk out of one side of their mouth trying to sound reasonable, logical and sometimes even intelligent. Scratch that very thin veneer of civility and you’ll find a racist bigot, snarling like a mad dog. It’s the face of the right, the face of the storm troopers and the face of the KKK, incensed with the knowledge there were white persons going against other white persons to defend the rights of African Americans. These white people (Abraham Joshua Heschel among them) marched with MLK. They were called nigger lovers, race traitors, miscegenators, communists, lefties, etc. Your insults are nothing new. They’re words, nothing more. They mean nothing and the more you use them, the more meaningless they become, as meaningless as calling someone antisemite, Jew hater, Israel hater, etc., etc. Just empty words spoken by a miserable human being that his/her soul is rotting from the disease of bigotry and racism.

      Reply to Comment
      • Merkava

        Why are you suddenly angry and snarling like a mad dog, Carmen? Are you even forgetting that you are regurgitating the same nonsense about “racism” you have posted before as Brian/Ben/Bryan? As I told you very long ago, there is absolutely NOTHING wrong with being a Muslim. Good Muslims proudly identify themselves as Muslims. Despite the bad things SOME Muslims do, I KNOW MANY GOOD MUSLIMS who are as good a people as good Christians and good Jews! Be proud of who you are and quit trying to see “racism, KKK, blah, blah, blah” EVERYWHERE where there exists none – simply because you are losing a debate.

        BTW

        Why are you claiming that you are “White”? Who the fuck cares about that, you racist moron?

        Reply to Comment
        • Carmen

          I don’t see racism everywhere, just in people like yourself. I’m not suddenly angry and snarling like a dog. You are projecting, and you do it with regularity.
          “Psychological projection, also known as blame shifting, is a theory in psychology in which humans defend themselves against their own unpleasant impulses by denying their existence while attributing them to others. For example, a person who is rude may constantly accuse other people of being rude.” Also, someone who names themself after a machine maybe doesn’t see themself as human anymore. That’s a lot more serious than projection. I think you also have low self-esteem compounded by very strong feelings of inadequacy.

          “Why are you claiming that you are “White”? Who the fuck cares about that, you racist moron?” said the man who called me “angry”. Where did I claim I’m white? Where did I claim I’m Muslim? Where did I post as Ben/Brian/Bryan? You too suffer from extremely poor reading comprehension; I’d rather believe that, but if you are merely an irritant, I’ll accept that too. You do have a curious inability to accept the fact that everyone you disagree with/are upset by/want to silence is not named “Ben”. Maybe in your mind if you call all of us “Ben”, its less threatening and not as frightening for you. You believe you can handle “Ben”. You pretend it’s always “Ben”, no matter the name of the person (Carmen, Weiss, Felix, Bruce, the actual Ben and others) and you get consolation in that you only have to slander/bully/belittle one person (Ben) and not multiple persons. Does it makes you feel like the strong and powerful machine you’ve named yourself after? I don’t know. Regardless, this isn’t a chat line and I have said all I care to say to “Merkava”.

          Reply to Comment
          • Merkava

            Two crucial pseudonyms: “Israel” and “Muslim Jew” are missing. Why did you leave both monikers out?

            Be truthful!

            Reply to Comment
          • Gustav

            Like hell, BEN/CARMEN doesn’t see racists everywhere. According to him, everyone who does not profess his ideology is racist.

            Reply to Comment
    6. Ben

      The snarling Merkava has been out of the closet for some time now now as an unreconstructed Gopsteinist, in all his/her ugliness. Behold. This is what s/he really gets exercised about. Purity and the threat of the untermenschen. Now we are seeing the real face of the far Right that has moved to the center of Israeli politics. The mask is off. Merkava is just willing to say what other people think. This is what the Israeli Right wants, in 2015, the rest of the world to give it a pass on. Yet wants to be called a modern western democracy, with all privileges accruing. And if any European state’s Education Ministry similarly banned a book about Jewish-non-Jewish love–imagine the howls of outrage from this same Israeli Right? This is a kind of nationalistic personality disorder. “The rules apply to everyone except me.” Merkava exhibits this disorder on an interpersonal level quite obviously–the snarler snarls “why are you snarling?–but serves as a grim poster child for the far Right’s social pathology on this. Israel is going to have to deal one way or the other with its contradictions. Being an ethnosupremacist pseudo-democracy in 2015 is, as Edo says “uncomfortable,” to say the least. But it’s more than that. It’s a strikingly awkward anachronism and the ghosts of blood soaked 20th Century European history howl in irony here. And these ugly contradictions are not going away.

      Reply to Comment
      • Ben

        Ze’ev Sternhell:

        http://www.haaretz.com/opinion/.premium-1.630047?v=23FB1CD3D5DEC3DDB1C63E33F2A70C1F
        What Israel’s founding fathers never imagined
        05.12.2014
        “No one ever envisioned the actual possibility that power would fall one day into the hands of people with the demeanor of masters, for whom the oppression of another nation was second nature. Who ever imagined that the Jewish community might one day turn into a colonialist entity and lay the foundations of an apartheid regime as a permanent condition, and would want to engrave that shame in its law books on top of that?”

        Reply to Comment
      • Ben

        Sternhell: “[The Founders] never imagined that the Feiglins and Elkins would have ruling power in the most persecuted nation in modern history. Their great foe was Jabotinsky, whom Ben-Gurion and Katznelson knew, and against whom they fought for power and for the means to achieve their common goal, but not for the goal itself. Even in the second generation, that of Menachem Begin and his comrades in the underground, the type of politicians such as Naftali Bennett, Uri Ariel, Miri Regev and Ayelet Shaked would not have existed because the occupation and the settlements that created them did not exist at the time.”

        Reply to Comment
      • Merkava

        Does BEN appreciate the truth and the facts? If so, let’s stick with both, shall we?

        1. You claim that the Israeli Ministry of education banned a book. That is a lie. the book was only not included in the school curriculum, nothing more and nothing less. Anyone who wants to by the book in question in Israel can buy as many copies of that book as he wants, read them as much as he/she wants and teach his/her own children about “love affairs between Jewish women and Muslim Arab men” as much as you want. WE SIMPLY DON’T CARE! But we will not use public funds and public schools to teach Jewish children in Jewish schools about sexual relationship between “Jewish women and Muslim Arab men”. There is no intellectual or academic value in learning in doing so. We are more concerned and preoccupied with being the best in math and physics. I suggest you start telling the truth.

        2. You claim: “And if any European state’s Education Ministry similarly banned a book about Jewish-non-Jewish love–imagine the howls of outrage from this same Israeli Right?”

        You still don’t get it do, you? There are no books about “Jewish-non-Jewish love” in the curriculum of any European countries and WE SIMPLY DON’T CARE. And if there are such books and the Europeans refuse to include it in the school curriculum of European school children, that would be exactly doing the same anti-assimilation work the Diaspora Jewry has been doing for thousands of years in Europe and American. It would be a good thing. Judaism, Islam, Christianity, etc. reject assimilation of their members into other faiths. It got NOTHING TO DO WITH RACE, moron! Any HUMAN BEING (e.g. a Black African) can convert to Judaism and marry any Jewish man or woman (e.g. a Blonde Jew from Sweden) he/she desires and who desires him/her. At the same time, any Jew has the PERSONAL FREEDOM to leave Judaism, marry whomever he or she wants and assimilate. Neither the state or anyone else can take away that right. Does that have to be repeated a million times before you understand it? Sheesh, how thick is your skull really?

        Reply to Comment
        • Ben

          Excuse me, but you just sound SO stupid. What a jabbering idiot. Almost every single sentence is a hoot.

          You also never understand your offensiveness.

          What people like Boaz and Merkava and Eis never seem to get is what terrible impressions they leave outside people with as to what Israelis and right wing “pro-Israel” people are like. People come away thinking, “wow, he/she is SUCH an assh*le. SO offensive. SO abrasive. SO thuggish. SO cold. THIS is what Israelis are like?” Merkava et al. never get how their attitude and demeanor backfires on them every time. People reading them ask, “really, the average Israeli right winger has the personality problems of a Merkava, is this offensive, immature, insecure, dishonest? This gangsterish?” No wonder the highly placed U.S. official famously said “you can’t embarrass an Israeli.” Seriously, there is something wrong with Israeli culture if Merkava is in ANY way representative. Yet I’ve never ever seen an Israeli right winger step in here and say to Merkava (or her/his many alternate names) “cut it out, you’re embarrassing us.” Never. Really amazing.

          Reply to Comment
          • Merkava

            And that’s another proof of your defeat in yet another debate. Your idiotic claims were comprehensively debunked and you have nothing to say except change the subject and start hallucinating about Boaz. Next you will start ranting about Gopstein, etc. What exactly is this thing with “Eis”, BEN, ya can’t get enough of whacking it while thinking of her always? What a pathetic old turd, you are.

            Reply to Comment
    7. Average American

      I suppose any government has shaped its education system to its own advantage. In USA, the truth about the suffering of the Native Indians is conveniently not in our history schoolbooks, we instead make heroes of people like Custer. In USA, the truth about our over-leveraged financial system and self-serving central bank is conveniently not in our finance schoolbooks, we instead make heroes of people like Paulson.
      However, in USA, we do not shape our schoolbooks to keep our race pure.

      Reply to Comment
    8. Carmen

      “Israeli schoolchildren come in at 39th place in a major education report published Wednesday that ranked 76 nations according to standardized test scores.

      Asian nations led the rankings, published by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, with Singapore taking first place, followed by Hong Kong, South Korea, Japan and Taipei. European nations were next in line, with Finland at sixth place followed by Estonia, Switzerland and the Netherlands.

      The OECD issued a special warning about the decline of Sweden in the rankings. The Scandinavian country now places at 35th place, four slots ahead of Israel. The US ranks 28th, Britain 20th.

      The report uses a new method for scoring international tests such as PISA and TIMSS that created a shared standard for comparing diverse countries’ performance across multiple tests.

      “This is the first time we have a truly global scale of the quality of education,” OECD education director Andreas Schleicher said of the report. “The idea is to give more countries, rich and poor, access to comparing themselves against the world’s education leaders, to discover their relative strengths and weaknesses, and to see what the long-term economic gains from improved quality in schooling could be for them.”
      Times of Israel staff May 13, 2015

      – Fewer Israeli students matriculating, less improvement in test results
      Thu, 09/08/2012 – 15:19 (3 years 20 weeks назад)

      Education Ministry results released on Wednesday indicate that during the 2010-2011 school year, less than half (48.1 percent) of the country’s high school seniors passed the full set of matriculation exams. For the first time in four years, no improvement is discernible in high school matriculation exam results around the country. Contrary to Education Minister Gideon Sa’ar’s promise of “gradual, consistent improvement in the matriculation test scores,” the past four years have seen a slight drop of 0.2 percent in the test results.

      Education Ministry results released on Wednesday indicate that during the 2010-2011 school year, less than half (48.1 percent) of the country’s high school seniors passed the full set of matriculation exams.

      However, among pupils enrolled in schools where the exam is taken, there was a 1.2 percent rise that year in exam success. About 60 percent of pupils in these schools pass the full battery of matriculation exams. Close to 20 percent of the country’s 17-year-olds never make it to their senior year of high school. There has also been a two percent drop among this age group in taking the matriculation exams.”

      Time will tell if these statistics will improve under the auspice of Naftali Bennett. I’m just guessing, but I think the caliber of education will steadily decline, especially if the ultra-religious have anything to do with it. Their children are embarassingly ignorant compared to their public school counterparts. Education is not important anymore, not here and not in the USA. Their governments don’t need intelligent young people who’ll ask a lot of questions and demand answers and search for the truth through all the distraction and misinformation. No, they only require angry youth with a pulse. Angry because there’s nothing to look forward too if you failed your bagrut because your teachers failed you. You’ll do your time in the IOF and be even more angry knowing you’ll have to take any kind of job you’re offered afterwards because of your failed bagrut, but, you got to release some of your pent-up aggression and frustration at checkpoints, mow a little lawn here and there. In the end you’ve been failed by a system that’s more interested in domination and occupation, not some little ben or bat’s future. But hey, there’s a trip to Thailand or India to look forward to losing yourself and hopefully your memories of your service in the IOF. In the end nobody will be worried about interreligious love stories on high school curricula, by then high school will be nothing more than boot camp, and the future soldiers won’t be able to read at all.

      Reply to Comment
      • Cindy

        Is see that you failed to answer Merkava’s question above regarding “Israel” and “Muslim Jew”. Why is that?

        While the Gustav and Merkava, like all guys, might not be paying attention to small details right under their nose, we have been monitoring the situation and closing in on you.

        Would you like to tell the readers why you “manic marnie” was banned and now posting as “Carmen” and “Israel”?

        Reply to Comment
    9. Ben

      Gershom Schocken, a voice of sanity and intelligence and deep knowledge on this subject. He wrote this 30 years ago. You must read it. Such an antidote to hysterical, ignorant ramblings. Gershom Shocken gives us so much to think about and affords us all an opportunity to see this subject with fresh eyes and ears:

      http://www.haaretz.com/opinion/the-jewish-ban-on-intermarriage-has-become-a-curse-1.331931

      The Jewish ban on intermarriage has become a curse

      Reply to Comment
      • Merkava

        Why is this perverted old turd, BEN, sooo obsessed with sexual relationship between Jewish women and Muslim Arab men and doing such deep research on it?

        Go take your meds, moron. And get a life!

        Reply to Comment
    10. Ben

      A pathetic, racist milestone on road of nationalist indoctrination of Israeli children
      Even if the decision to ban ‘Borderlife’ from high schools is reversed, it won’t be enough. Netanyahu’s silence proves that his government is sending Israel into the abyss of darkness and racism.

      http://www.haaretz.com/opinion/1.694889

      Reply to Comment
      • Merkava

        BEN, you are still copying and pasting the opinion of political punidts. But can you think for yourself? Do you have the intelligence to think for yourself in your own mind and with your own brain? Let’s put that to a test, shall we?

        QUESTSION

        1. How is not teaching Israeli children in Israeli schools about sexual relationship between Jewish women and Muslim men “sending Israel into the abyss of darkness and racism”?

        2. Do you support teach Muslim Arab children about sexual relationship between Muslim women and non-Muslim men?

        Pls. answer the questions, BEN. NO copying and pasting the opinions of pundits – unless you are not intelligent enough to think for yourself?

        Reply to Comment
    11. Ben

      The silence on Schocken here is deafening. Schocken subverts profoundly the shibboleths of the Right.

      “Ever since the state was founded, the religious establishment has undergone a process of radicalization, as it attempts to impose on the sovereign Jewish nation those prohibitions and bans that applied when they existed solely as an ethno-religious group. Although it won’t be able to succeed, the more it tries, the more it prevents the formation of normal relations among the different ethnic groups in the country.

      This realization has not yet filtered into the public consciousness. But the fact is that there is not one sovereign nation in the world that bans marriages with members of other nations….

      Here enter the prohibitions and bans of the rabbinic establishment that has a monopoly on matrimonial laws. Add to that the deeply entrenched preconceptions of non-religious Jews dating back to pre-Emancipation and pre-Zionist days, when the Jews were merely an ethno-religious group, not a sovereign nation. This is what has delayed and prevented the emergence of a unified Israeli nation, whose ethnic composition includes people with Arab-Palestinian roots as well.

      Each one of us knows Arabs who would willingly join our social and cultural world, if only they were allowed to. There are still mixed marriages in this country…

      I have no doubt that most of these families would have preferred to live in Jewish communities because the males spouses are usually professionally integrated in Jewish society. But we refuse to absorb them socially. After all, there is hardly a possibility that an Arab could buy a home or rent an apartment in a Jewish city, and when this does begin to happen – as it already is in Upper Nazareth – it sparks a public uproar. Non-religious Jews are also prejudiced against their Arab neighbors, still influenced by the vestiges of the rabbinic ruling that forced seclusion on us. Some attempt to present rational arguments for their opposition to Arab neighbors, citing security concerns. But this is merely an excuse they use to conceal their emotional repugnance…

      …to ensure the formation of an Israeli nation composed of all the ethnic groups in this country, the barriers between them must be knocked down. That includes restrictions on marriages between members of different groups….”

      read more: http://www.haaretz.com/opinion/the-jewish-ban-on-intermarriage-has-become-a-curse-1.331931

      Reply to Comment
      • Merkava

        BEN, you are running away from me and afraid to answer the questions above.

        You claim that you are from the “United states”;
        You also claim that you are from “Britain”;
        You don’t have a job;
        You are not looking for a job;
        You are dependent on foodstamps to survive;

        But yet, what you, BEN, busy yourself with is sexual relationship between Jewish women and Muslim Arab men?! You drive yourself nuts that Israel’s education ministry refuse to teach Jewish children about sexual relationship between Jewish women and Muslim Arab men? That is important to you?!!

        Sheesh, BEN, you are such a low-life!

        Reply to Comment
    12. Ben

      The problem Schocken delineates so well spills out all over the place in Netanyahu’s Israel:

      “Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu spoke at the site of Friday’s Tel Aviv shooting Saturday night and called on Israel’s Muslim citizens to integrate in Israeli society.”

      (Please integrate. But you can’t ever marry us. And we can’t ever marry your kind. God forbid. And we can’t let our high school students read about love between an Arab and a Jew. God forbid. But integrate with us. Please. Just don’t ever have sex with us, or develop feelings for one of us, or marry us. God forbid. But please integrate. Just don’t get carried away. That’s all. Thank you.)

      Juxtapose Netanyahu with Schocken:

      “to ensure the formation of an Israeli nation composed of all the ethnic groups in this country, the barriers between them must be knocked down. That includes restrictions on marriages between members of different groups”

      P.S.: It finally took a tragedy like this—Jewish not Arab lives lost–for Netanyahu to say “that he agreed with Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan and Police Commissioner Roni Alsheich on a new plan to allocate funds and resources to dramatically increase police enforcement in Arab communities throughout Israel, namely in the Galilee, the Negev and the Triangle.” Whether this is just momentary claptrap, or the funds will actually be allocated, remains to be seen.

      Reply to Comment
      • Merkava

        This psychotic old turd is still obsessed with teaching Jewish children about sexual relationship between Jewish women and Muslim men. It is soooooo important to him that he has been driving himself nuts for several day now about it.

        Here check this out Ben “Israel”,

        “In Islam, Muslim women may not marry non-Muslim men, a term that includes infidels, apostate, ex-Muslims, other monotheistic (Christian, Jewish, Zoroastrian), non-theistic and polytheistic men (Hindu, Buddhist, Jain and others). Further, a Muslim – either by birth or after conversion – is not allowed to leave Islam to marry a non-Muslim, because leaving Islam is a religious hudud crime of apostasy punishable with death.

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Women_in_Islam#Forbidden_Marriages

        BTW

        You have not answered any of the questions above. You are still ON THE RUN, you little perverted coward.

        Maybe you can deploy your other alias “Israel” to distract? Oh pUleeze let “Israel” speak! What are you still waiting for, moron?

        Reply to Comment
    13. Ben

      As Lisa Goldman tweeted: “That’s our Bibi. Never misses an opportunity to miss an opportunity to build bridges instead of inciting fear/ hate.”

      Reply to Comment
      • Merkava

        Yeah, and there is NOTHING you can do about it. You must be feeling sooo powerless, helpless and angry. Choke on it!

        Reply to Comment
    14. Ben

      Roy Isacowitz:

      “Nostalgic White South African diehards are going to be delighted at the spirited defense of racial separation mounted by senior Education Ministry official Dalia Fenig last week.

      Not since the end of South African apartheid in 1994 has the policy of apartheid been expounded as explicitly and clearly as in Fenig’s explanation of her disqualification of a novel from inclusion in the general high school curriculum in Israel….”

      http://www.haaretz.com/opinion/.premium-1.695212

      Reply to Comment
      • Merkava

        Only a hateful anti-Semite like you or the ignorant will cast the ‘apartheid slur’ against the Jewish state.

        Here check this out, Ben alias “Israel”

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zB3_R5LykbY

        Got it now, moron?

        Reply to Comment
    15. Ben

      Banning books: An insidious attempt to close the Israeli mind
      Demagogues like Israel’s education minister are stuck forever in a closed world without imaginative possibility, a literalist ghetto in which they want to keep their electorate as well.

      William Kolbrener
      04.01.2016
      http://www.haaretz.com/opinion/.premium-1.695375

      Reply to Comment
      • Merkava

        1. The book was NOT banned, moron, it was only not included in the school curriculum of school children. Israelis who see any value in the book can buy the it anytime and any day in Israel and teach it to whomever they want.

        2. Not every book out there makes it into the school curriculum of school children, but only a fraction of 1%. This is also the case in your own country (I don’t suppose you know anything about your own country). Do you understand that very simple fact, or are you only interested in propaganda against the Jewish State by copying and pasting the opinions of politically far-leftist ideological pundits who are only interested in “sensationalism”, “generating internet traffic” and making money out of gullible fools like you?

        3. For several days now you have been driving yourself nuts because Israel’s education ministry will not teach Israeli kids about sexual relationship between Jewish women and Muslim Arab men. What a small minded, perverted low-life you are! On the other hand you are very fine with this: “In Islam, Muslim women may not marry non-Muslim men, a term that includes infidels, apostate, ex-Muslims, other monotheistic (Christian, Jewish, Zoroastrian), non-theistic and polytheistic men (Hindu, Buddhist, Jain and others). Further, a Muslim – either by birth or after conversion – is not allowed to leave Islam to marry a non-Muslim, because leaving Islam is a religious hudud crime of apostasy punishable with death. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Women_in_Islam#Forbidden_Marriages

        You really don’t have a job, do you? And instead of finding a job, you dwell 24/7 in the comment section of Jewish websites fixating on sexual activities with Jewish women, obsessing about Jews and ranting and raging against the Jewish State?

        Seriously, BEN, what kind of a hateful, ignorant, gullible and perverted old turd are you?

        Reply to Comment
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