Far-left group: Naturalize Jews in Palestine

Gush Shalom claims Arafat endorsed naturalizing Jews in Judea and Samaria as citizens of a Palestinian state.

Yonatan Roberts ,

Gush Shalom
Gush Shalom

In the wake of Binyamin Netanyahu's recent comments comparing Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas's insistence that Judea and Samaria be emptied of Jews to ethnic cleansing, a radical left-wing group has endorsed the proposal to grant Jews living over the Green Line citizenship in a future Palestinian state.

According to a spokesman for "Gush Shalom" (lit. The Peace Bloc), it is impossible to effect an evacuation in Judea and Samaria as was done in Gush Katif. While those communities contained roughly 9,000 residents, they noted, the Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria have more than 400,000. These Jews, the spokesman said, should be offered the same opportunity Israel extended to Arabs within the Green Line - citizenship.

He relates that in Israel, an Arab Is required to obey Israeli law. If he wants to purchase a weapon, he must first acquire a permit, and only then may he procure a weapon. If he does otherwise, he can expect to be arrested, questioned, tried and sentenced to time in an Israeli jail. He has a right to vote in Israeli elections, and indeed, the Arab Joint List is the third largest party in the Knesset. This, he said, should be the fate of Israelis who decide to stay in a newly created Arab state.

While drawing the comparison with Israeli Arabs, Gush Shalom did not address rampant anti-Semitic incitement within the Palestinian Authority, or regular attacks by local Arabs on Jews.

Despite their endorsement of the arrangement, Gush Shalom expects few would trade their Israeli citizenship for Palestinian citizenship.

"Most of them will be good Zionists and make Aliya," the spokesperson said, saying most Jews in Judea and Samaria would abandon their homes in the heart of the historic Jewish homeland and move across the Green Line if the area was ceded. He added that Yasser Arafat had endorsed such an arrangement during a meeting with the group.