CAMERA letter below corrects the faulty premise of an Op-Ed by George Bisharat. The letter was published in USA Today on June 17, 2010.
At the heart of commentary writer George Bisharat’s piece “Israeli raid ‘illegal,’ its acts ‘unconscionable’ ” is misleading propaganda. Bisharat slanders Israel as trying to “impose itself by force on an entire region that rejects its claims to ethnic supremacy” and as being “a state committed to privileging Jews, implanted … in a country with a majority Palestinian population” that “can only be sustained by violence” (USATODAY.com, June 4).
However, Israel was established on a sliver of British Mandatory Palestine. There was no pre-existing Palestinian Arab country. The mandate, confirmed by the League of Nations and reaffirmed by the United Nations, facilitated re-establishment of the Jewish people in their ancient homeland. Jewish immigration and economic development attracted Arab migration into what would become Israel. That migration and Arab massacres of Jews led Britain to bar further Jewish return. This accounted for the “Palestinian majority” in 1948.
The equality of Israeli Arabs and Jews from diverse ethnic backgrounds demonstrates that Israel claims no “ethnic supremacy.”
Rather than “privileging Jews,” Israel upholds rights of religious minorities, including Christians and Muslims — unlike Muslim countries, including Saudi Arabia and Iran.
As for being “sustained only by violence,” Israel has peace treaties with Egypt and Jordan. Its offers to the Palestinian leadership of a West Bank and Gaza Strip state in exchange for peace have been rejected, usually with violence.
Bisharat, a law professor, doesn’t make his case; he discredits it.
Eric Rozenman, Director
Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America