Professor Novel

Fredi Winkler

Prior to the elections in Israel, Professor Novel, a nonpartisan citizen, posted a video online. In it, he posed the question that is actually the most important electoral decision for Israel’s citizens; namely, what kind of nation do we want to be in the future?

First, he stressed that 6.6 million Jews and 6.8 million Arabs live in the region between the Mediterranean and the Jordan River (that is, the historical land of Israel, including the West Bank, Gaza, and the Golan Heights). He then emphasized that the decision concerning what kind of country Israel will be in the future ultimately lies with the voters.

Should Israel become a Jewish-dominated nation, encompassing the entirety of historical Israel and governing an Arab majority, a large percentage of whom don’t have Israeli citizenship? This is what the extreme right in Israel is striving for.

Or, should a democratic state be formed from the entire region of historical Israel, in which Jews and Arabs have the same rights? This is what the extreme left and some Arabs are striving for. Given the aforementioned demographic ratio, the implications of this option should be obvious.

Or, should Israel be and remain a democratic Jewish state with a clear Jewish majority? According to Novel, that would mean that Israel will have to break with the dream of the “Complete Land of Israel.” It would be truly painful, but Israelis will have to make up their minds because it’s impossible, as the saying goes, to have their cake and eat it, too. Seen in this way, it’s irrelevant how the election turned out. In forming a government, the important question (and with it, the decision of what kind of state Israel will be in the future) persists.

However, Professor Novel said that there’s still the option of not deciding, and kicking the can even further down the road, as the previous administration did. But this would put Israel at risk of having others eventually make the decisions about the land. He added that these elections may be the most fateful in Israel’s history, because they’re ultimately deciding which path Israel will take in the future. In his video clip, he presented the three different options, and unambiguously pointed out the consequences of each choice.

He also made it clear that, assuming Palestinians will eventually emigrate and leave the country is a false hope. They will remain in the country, just as the Jews will. “We have to see the realities,” the professor said, “and make our decisions based on those realities.”

He noted ironically at the conclusion that, in spite of all of the difficulties he’d referenced, he was convinced that there is a way to overcome the problems. Namely, burying his head in the sand like an ostrich.

Despite the deadlocked situation, let’s hope and pray that a government will be able to come to terms regarding these upcoming urgent decisions.

In this optimistic hope, I send my warmest greetings with Shalom, because we know that He that keeps Israel neither slumbers nor sleeps.

News from Israel - 10/2019

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