Growing Integration and Prosperity for Israeli Arabs at Risk from Forces that Crave Victory over Jews

(The Times-UK) Melanie Phillips - Over the past few weeks there has been sustained rioting on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem. From the al-Aqsa mosque, Arabs hurled stones, iron bars and petrol bombs on to Jews worshipping below at the Western Wall. This forced the Israeli police to enter the compound to restore order. Israel's Arab citizens, who number around 1.9 million, 20% of the population, are different from Palestinian Arabs living in the disputed territories of the West Bank, eastern Jerusalem, or Gaza. Among Israel's own Arab citizens there has been signs of increasing prosperity and integration in recent years. The Arab Israeli middle class is growing and the share of Arab students at Israeli colleges and universities has nearly doubled over the last 12 years. In 2020, more than 1,000 volunteered to serve in the Israel Defense Forces (IDF), more than twice the number of previous years. Yet in May 2021, when Israeli forces were at war with Hamas in Gaza, Arab Israelis rioted in Jaffa, Lod, Acre, Ramle and Haifa, where they had lived peacefully alongside their Jewish neighbors for decades. The mobs burnt synagogues and schools, stoned Jews in more than 5,000 attacks, and set homes and cars on fire. So among Israel's Arabs, both assimilation and radicalization have been simultaneously accelerating.

2022-04-28 00:00:00

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