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Israel's shameful attack on Arabic must be stopped [View All]

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Violet_Crumble Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-15-11 08:25 PM
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Israel's shameful attack on Arabic must be stopped
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Why demonstrate lack of respect for Arab citizens at a time when the most important challenge facing Israel is to integrate its Arab citizens into Israeli society?

By Moshe Arens


The proposal by some members of the Knesset to strip the Arab language of its current status as one of the official languages of the State of Israel is a senseless move and, what's more, a sign of disrespect toward the more than one million citizens of Israel whose mother tongue is Arabic.

It is difficult to fathom what got into the heads of some legislators to propose this change. Why demonstrate such lack of respect for our Arab citizens at a time when the most important challenge facing Israel is to integrate its Arab citizens into Israeli society and to make them feel at home in Israel?

Adopting the language of a minority population as one of the official languages of a country is a common thing in this day and age. It is a demonstration by the majority population of sympathy, consideration and respect for the minority.

Members of Knesset who take the trouble to check the Google search engine on the Internet may be surprised to find that many countries in the world have recognized minority languages as official languages - in some cases, even the languages of very small minorities. For example, Finland, next door to its larger Swedish neighbor, recognizes Swedish as an official language.

The Arab citizens of Israel are not a small minority by any means. Why propose this change in the status of the Arab language in Israel after 63 years in which Arabic has shared an equal status with Hebrew as an official language of the country?

http://www.haaretz.com/print-edition/opinion/israel-s-shameful-attack-on-arabic-must-be-stopped-1.395617
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