This week, the Israeli government is working to advance the “Nation-State Bill” in the Knesset. Daniel Sokatch, CEO of the New Israel Fund, released the following statement:
“This is tribalism at its worst. Beginning with Israel’s Declaration of Independence, the Jewish value of human dignity and the principle of the equality of all people have formed the democratic foundation of the state. This law is completely incompatible with those values. It is a slap in the face to Arab Palestinian citizens of Israel and provides a legal basis to discriminate based on religion, race, and sex. Legislation that identifies first- and second-class citizens has no place in a democracy.
“Basic laws should define the fundamental values of the state. If racism, sexism, and religious fundamentalism are to be protected in Israel’s basic laws, it should be no surprise when the country embodies those values. This bill and the government that supported it are a danger to Israel’s future.”