Avi Nofech
"democracy and free trade are the only way to peace"

Israel in Years 1948-1967 and Now

The founders of Israel wanted a real Jewish country. They wanted a country with a clear Jewish majority, the country where Jews will be doing all the work. They achieved it!

Israel in years 1948-1967 had an 80% Jewish majority. There was no Palestinian or imported labour then so Jews had to do all the work, with their own hands. Ben Gurion, Golda and other Zionist leaders understood that Israeli Arabs must have full equality before law, for Israel to be recognised as a fellow democracy by other democracies. This aim was achieved.

Soon after Independence, Israel bought from Britain the Meteors, the first Western jet fighter. As the time went on, Israel bought French Mirages, British Centurion tanks, American Hawk air defence and American Skyhawks. Israel was firmly with Western democracies, and enjoying the support of Western public opinion.

As I came to Israel in 1975, I saw the government buildings next to Israel Museum and the Givat Ram campus of the Hebrew University in Jerusalem being built. I was amazed to see a Caterpillar backhoe being operated by a Jewish Israeli technician, a sight not to be seen in the Diaspora.

Now everything changed. The Whole Land of Israel, comprising the Green Line Israel, plus East Jerusalem, plus Judea and Samaria, plus Gaza, now has an Arab majority. Judea and Samaria, including East Jerusalem, have 3 million Palestinians compared to 700 thousand Jews who live there. The majority speaks Arabic and “Judea and Samaria” is not how they would call their country.

As for work, agricultural work in Israel is done mostly by Thailand guest workers, and construction work is done mostly by Palestinians. Many Palestinians work in industrial parks next to Israeli settlements in Judea and Samaria. Jews who live in these settlements are their employers. The houses Jews live in the settlements were also built by Palestinian construction workers.

It seems today’s Jewish Israelis are giving up the values of Israeli Zionist pioneers in favor of traditional values of Jewish Diaspora. These values are: be the head, and not the tail. It means: be the business owner, not the rank and file worker. Study the Torah, rather than run under the weight of the ammunition loadout. Be the ruling minority and forget about being the majority.

Sadly and obviously, this reminds of Hamas saying: “Israel is not a real country. It is a Zionist minority regime in Palestine”.

What will happen to Israel? My post is expressing my fear that Israel is entering the historical stage that will bring Israeli Jews back into Diaspora.

About the Author
I was a lecturer in mathematics in Israel and in Canada and now teach part time at Grant MacEwan University.