An Israeli Arab rights center released a scathing report Tuesday
documenting hundreds of instances of discrimination, hate speech, and
racially motivated violence perpetrated by Jews against Arabs in the past
four years. It blasted the government for apathy and called for immediate
action to stem the growing tide of anti-Arab racism.
There have been 15 Arab deaths at the hands of Israeli security forces
since the riots of October 2000, in which 12 Israeli Arabs were killed,
with only two indictments filed, according to the Mossawa Advocacy Center
for Arab Citizens of Israel report. At the same time, leading Israeli
politicians and well-known personalities are recorded as having made 15
inciteful statements, while racist graffiti and soccer chants of “Kill the
Arabs!” are the most common forms of harassment.
In addition, the report cites 10 laws, such as the one preventing family
reunification of Arabs who marry Palestinians, which legally enshrine
discrimination and Haifa University studies showing that 70 percent of the
Jewish public considers Arab citizens a threat to state security and that
59% of Jews wouldn’t accept an Arab boss.
The publication is the first of its kind and is intended to be an annual
survey. It used the same standards to assess racism and violence as the
recent European report on anti-Semitism.
“We think there’s a potential for confrontation between Jewish citizens and
Arab citizens,” said Mossawa director Jafar Farah. “This should be a signal
that if we don’t want to have civil confrontation – if not war – between
both, we have to act.”
To that end, Mossawa has several recommendations, including the immediate
and full implementation of the Or Report, which found institutionalized
discrimination in the wake of the October riots, the outlawing of parties
that advocate the forced transfer of Arab citizens out of Israel, and for
Jews and Arabs to work together to battle this problem..