However, this focus on ethnicity itself has raised deep concern among the international community. The United Nations human rights treaty bodies consistently raise concern about Israel's failure to comply with its international human rights obligations vis-à-vis Palestinian citizens of Israel. Recent examples include the concluding observations of: the Committee on the Rights of the Child, CRC/C/ISR/CO/2-4, 2013; the Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, CERD/C/ISR/CO/14-16, 2012; the Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, E/C.12/ISR/CO/3, 2011 and the Human Rights Committee, CCPR/C/ISR/CO/3, 2010. Furthermore, in 2012, the European Parliament passed a historic resolution condemning Israeli policies of forced displacement and home demolitions in the West Bank, including East Jerusalem and the Naqab (Negev), and called on Israel to withdraw the Prawer Plan, which seeks to displace and dispossess tens of thousands of Palestinian Bedouins from their homes and villages in the Naqab. See: European Parliament, Resolution on EU Policy on the West Bank and East Jerusalem (2012/2694(RSP), 5 July 2012, http://www.europarl.europa.eu/; and “Prawer Plan,” Adalah: The Legal Center for Arab Minority Rights in Israel, http://adalah.org.


See Adalah's Discriminatory Laws Database, available at: http://adalah.org.


See for example, Ruth Gavison, “Jewish and Democratic? A Rejoinder to the ‘Ethnic Democracy’ Debate,” Israel Studies 4, no. 1 (1999), pp. 44–72; Chaim Gans, A Just Zionism: On the Morality of the Jewish State (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2008); and Alexander Yakobson and Amnon Rubenstein, Israel and the Family of Nations: the Jewish Nation-State and Human Rights (New York: Routledge, 2008); Na'ama Carmi, “Immigration Policy: Between Demographic Considerations and Preservation of Culture,” Law & Ethics of Human Rights 2, no. 1 (2008), pp. 1–29. For the critique of these scholars within the legal-philosophical debate, see: Hassan Jabareen, “The Future of Arab Citizenship in Israel: Jewish-Zionist Time in a Place with No Palestinian Memory,” in Challenging Ethnic Citizenship, eds. Daniel Levy and Yfaat Weiss (New York: Berghahn Books, 2002), p. 196; Raef Zreik, “Notes on the Value of Theory: Readings in the Law of Return-A Polemic,” Law & Ethics of Human Rights 2, no. 1 (2008), pp. 343–386; and Nimer Sultany, “The State of Progressive Constitutional Theory: The Paradox of Constitutional Democracy and the Project of Political Justification,” Harvard Civil Rights-Civil Liberties Law Review 47, no. 2 (2012), pp. 371–455.


Dr. Azmi Bishara and Prof. Nadim Rouhana are two of the leading Palestinian scholars who started this debate academically with Israeli scholars in the 1990s. See Amal Jamal, “The Vision of the ‘Political Nation’ and the Challenge of ‘State of all its Citizens’: Explorations in Azmi Bishara's Political Thought,” Al Payeem Journal, no. 30 (Winter 2006), pp. 71–113 (Hebrew) and Nadim Rouhana, Palestinian Citizens in an Ethnic Jewish State: Identities in Conflict (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1997).


Foucault explains that the conception of war in the eighteenth century changed and became rational. The medieval war was a war of right, like “a judicial procedure, by a victory…. You lost, therefore right was not on your side.” See Michel Foucault, Security, Territory, Population, trans. by Graham Burchell (New York: Picador, 2007), p. 301. Similarly, Whitman describes this conception of war as “a kind of trial with a kind of verdict,” explaining that today this old concept of war is anachronistic and contradicts international law. See James Q. Whitman, The Verdict of Battle (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2012), p. 3.


Sabri Jiryis, The Arabs in Israel, trans. Inea Bushnaq (New York: Monthly Review Press, 1976).


See Hassan Jabareen, “The Hobbesian Citizenship: How Palestinians Became a Minority in Israel,” in Multiculturalism and Minority Rights in the Arab World, eds. Will Kymlicka and Eva Pföstl (Oxford: Oxford University Press, forthcoming 2014).


The Palestinian citizens of Israel do not have a history as a “national minority.” With the establishment of Israel in 1948, for the first time, they became a numerical minority. However, at the time, their political consciousness continued to be based on their membership in the Arab nation.


Official Commission of Inquiry, Report of the Official Commission to Clarify Conflicts between Security Forces and Civilians in October 2000 (September 2003), http://elyon1.court.gov.il/, accessed September 2013 (Hebrew). See also: Adalah, “October 2000: Law and Politics before the Or Commission of Inquiry” (2003) and Adalah, “The Accused: Failures Investigating October 2000” (2006).


“Adalah: Mazuz's Decision to Close October 2000 Investigation is Racist and Inflammatory,” Adalah's Newsletter 44 (January 2008). See also: Adalah, “The Accused: Part II – Failures Investigating October 2000” (2011).


The Israeli Supreme Court twice rejected challenges to the law. See HCJ 7052/03, Adalah et al. v. Minister of Interior et al. (1) IsrLR 443 (2006), http://elyon1.court.gov.il/, accessed September 2013. See also HCJ 466/07, MK Zahava Galon – Meretz-Yahad et al. v. Attorney General et al. (11 January 2012).


There are three documents: the “Democratic Constitution” prepared by Adalah; the “Future Vision” document put forward by the National Committee of Arab Mayors in Israel; and the “Haifa Declaration” led by Mada al-Carmel.


See Yoav Stern, “Arab Leaders Air Public Relations Campaign against Shin Bet,” Ha'Aretz, 6 April 2007; Ha'Aretz Editorial, “Not a matter for the Shin Bet,” Ha'Aretz, 28 May 2007 (“The Shin Bet is responsible for maintaining state security, not for maintaining a Jewish majority in the state, and it must refrain from any activity that involves intervening in legally permissible political action”); and Yitzhak Laor, a non-Zionist intellectual criticized the Shin Bet in “Democracy for Jews only,” Ha'Aretz, 30 May 2007.


For example, Shlomo Avineri, a professor of political science at the Hebrew University who represents the mainstream academic position, commented that: “Adalah's proposal is a very clear and sophisticated mechanism for disestablishing Israel as a Jewish state” (Dan Izenberg, “The Future Vision of the Palestinian Arabs in Israel,” Jerusalem Post, 4 April 2007). See also Rory McCarthy, “Israeli Group Calls for Increased Rights for Arabs,” The Guardian, 28 February 2007, quoting Avineri on the “Democratic Constitution”: “It is an Arab nationalist programme and its aim is to de-legitimize Israel as a Jewish state. This document is not going to end discrimination. It is counter-productive and will create the exact opposite effect—an extreme response from the Israeli right-wing.” See also Uzi Benziman: “These moves [the ‘Future Vision’ and Adalah's appeal to ‘UN organizations’] reflect a genuine radicalization of both Arab Israelis' demands and their representatives' modes of action, and they arouse the Jewish reflex of self-defense” (Uzi Benziman, “A la intifada comme a la intifada,” Ha'Aretz, 18 February 2007).


Adalah, “The New Israeli Land Reform August 2009,” Adalah's Newsletter 63 (August 2009).


See Hassan Jabareen, “Why Palestinians Can't Recognize a ‘Jewish State,’” Ha'Aretz, 2 September 2011.


See: Prime Minister Netanyahu, “Full Text of Netanyahu's Foreign Policy Speech at Bar Ilan,” Ha'Aretz, 14 June 2009; Ari Shavit, “Theater of the Absurd,” Ha'Aretz, 2 December 2009; and Yoav Kapshuk, “Why It's Time to Discuss the One-State Solution,” +972 Blog, 18 September 2012.


“Uprooted villages” and the classification of Palestinian-owned land as “absentee property,” are two examples which apply to Palestinian citizens of Israel. Israel's official position, including that of the Supreme Court, is that these confiscations are justified as a result of the 1948 war and its consequences, as well as for security reasons. For the relevance of IHL principles within the Green Line after the establishment of Israel, see Michael Kagan, “Destructive Ambiguity: Enemy Nationals and the Legal Enabling of Ethnic Conflict in the Middle East,” Columbia Human Rights Law Review, Vol. 38 (2007), pp. 263–319.


See, for example, Aeyal Gross, “The Constitution, Reconciliation, and Transitional Justice: Lessons from South Africa and Israel,” Stanford Journal of International Law 40 (2004), pp. 47–104.

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