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Abolish the JNF (Uri Avnery)

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Violet_Crumble Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-23-07 06:40 AM
Original message
Abolish the JNF (Uri Avnery)
What would we say if an American institution, holding a seventh of all the land in the United States, adopted statutes that allowed it to sell or rent land only to White Anglo-Saxon Protestants?

We would not believe it. And it is, indeed, impossible.

But that's the way things are in Israel. This us now the subject of a stormy public debate.

These are the facts: The Jewish National Fund (in Hebrew Keren Kayemet le-Israel - KKL) holds 13% of all the land in Israel. Its statutes explicitly prohibit the sale or rental of land to non-Jews. This means that every Jew in the world, living anywhere from Timbuktu to Kamchatka, can get land from the KKL, without even coming to Israel, while an Arab citizen of Israel, whose forefathers have lived here for hundreds - or even thousands - of years, cannot acquire a house or an apartment on its land.

The debate arose after a recent ruling of the Israeli Supreme Court which proscribed discrimination between citizens in the distribution of land. On the strength of this, the KKL has been sued. Now the Attorney General has decided that the Government cannot discriminate against Arab citizens, even while distributing land belonging to the KKL.

This is all very nice, but there is a "but". The best legal brains looked for a way out: How to keep the discrimination alive in spite of the court's decision? No Problem. The Attorney General simply proposes that for every dunam (1000 square meters, a Turkish measure still applied in Israel) that the KKL will have to distribute - God forbid - to Arabs, the government will compensate it with another dunam somewhere else. The alternative land will be in the "peripheral" areas, the Negev and the Galilee, where it is much more profitable. And for good measure, the government will guarantee that the annual revenues of the KKL will reach half a billion Shekels. Thus the cake will be divided but remain whole.


http://www.zmag.org/content/showarticle.cfm?SectionID=107&ItemID=12642
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Tom Joad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Apr-24-07 12:11 PM
Response to Original message
1. This should be getting lots of attention. Thanks for posting.
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UndertheOcean Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-26-07 01:24 AM
Response to Original message
2. Thanks for posting!
n/t
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oberliner Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-26-07 01:58 AM
Response to Original message
3. Does the Muslim Waqf own land in Israel that Jews are not permitted to buy or lease?
If so, should that institution be abolished as well?



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Violet_Crumble Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-26-07 02:20 AM
Response to Reply #3
4. No, they don't n/t
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oberliner Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-26-07 09:04 AM
Response to Reply #4
10. "In Israel, 5 percent of the land is owned by the Muslim Waqf
and they have a policy of not leasing or selling land to other than Muslims."
-JNF Executive Director Russell Robinson

http://www.thejewishweek.com/news/newscontent.php3?artid=11080

What evidence do you have that he is lying?
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Violet_Crumble Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-26-07 09:33 AM
Response to Reply #10
11. Since when have they been a govt or quasi-govt agency?
Well, the first hint that maybe you might want to check his claims is this: 'If you want to buy land in the Vatican, you have to be Catholic.' Seeing as the Vatican is a whopping 44 hectares with a permanent population of about 500, I'm doubtful there's been much in the way of land sales at the Vatican for hundreds of years. Though I guess they could subdivide St. Peter's Square (after all, it just lies around doing nothing much of the time) and get some Catholic-only high density housing developments happening ;)

When it comes to his claim about the Waqf owning 5% of Israel's land, I'm sceptical and not inclined to take his word for it just because he says so. Especially when I read stuff like this: 'For example, the state of Israel now holds the Islamic Waqf land under the control of the Prime Ministers office. This land is being sold and privatized. This property belongs to our community. Our community is not absent. This land is the physical infrastructure for the development of the Palestinian community in the future.'

http://www.arts.mcgill.ca/mepp/new_prrn/research/papers/ittijah.htm


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Shaktimaan Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-26-07 10:15 AM
Response to Reply #11
12. Since when has the waqf been a quasi-governmental organization?
It is exactly the same as the JNF. The Waqf in Jerusalem administrates the Haram-al-Sharif. That's about exactly as quasi-governmental as the JNF is. In fact...

waqf (Arabic: وقف, plural Arabic: اوقاف, awqāf; Turkish: vakıf) is an inalienable religious endowment in Islam, typically devoting a building or plot of land for Muslim religious or charitable purposes. It is conceptually similar to the common law trust.
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oberliner Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-26-07 10:18 AM
Response to Reply #11
13. In all seriousness
Edited on Thu Apr-26-07 10:18 AM by oberliner
I honestly am skeptical too and not inclined to take his for it just because he says so either.

I cannot find any information on the net in English that comes from the Waqf itself regarding exactly how they function in Israel.
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Violet_Crumble Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-28-07 04:40 AM
Response to Reply #13
16. Yeah, I couldn't find anything either...
Edited on Sat Apr-28-07 05:23 AM by Violet_Crumble
Mind you, I did get distracted by the Vatican thing :)
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Behind the Aegis Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-26-07 03:04 AM
Response to Reply #3
5. No, but...
This paragraph:

These are the facts: The Jewish National Fund (in Hebrew Keren Kayemet le-Israel - KKL) holds 13% of all the land in Israel. Its statutes explicitly prohibit the sale or rental of land to non-Jews. This means that every Jew in the world, living anywhere from Timbuktu to Kamchatka, can get land from the KKL, without even coming to Israel, while an Arab citizen of Israel, whose forefathers have lived here for hundreds - or even thousands - of years, cannot acquire a house or an apartment on its land.


is not quite true. Yes, the KKL does have restrictive policies, however, it has, at times, compromised those terms...

Special case of the Jewish National Fund (JNF) land
JNF land, even when managed by the Israeli government, is restricted by the formal charter of the JNF. The purpose of the JNF was to purchase land for the settlement of Jews, and this has been interpreted to mean that JNF land should not be leased, at least on a long-term basis, to non-Jews. The agreement that placed the JNF land under government administration incorporates the restriction.

In practice, however, JNF land has been leased to Arab citizens of Israel, both for short-term and long-term use such as leases on a yearly basis to Bedouins for use as pasture. In other cases, JNF land has been traded for other, unrestricted, land so it can be leased to Arabs.

source (emphasis added)



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Robson Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-28-07 06:53 PM
Response to Reply #5
21. Discrimination is discrimination and apartheid is apartheid
I have nothing against Israelis or Jews, but I oppose racism and favoritism. Israel has attempted to sidestep the issue that they are racist while they give preferential treatment to Jews (that they claim are either a religion or an ethnic group depending upon the issue) while discriminating against all others.

South Africa and Israel have more in common than nukes IMHO.
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Shaktimaan Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-26-07 03:26 AM
Response to Original message
6. Do you just believe anything?
This means that every Jew in the world, living anywhere from Timbuktu to Kamchatka, can get land from the KKL, without even coming to Israel, while an Arab citizen of Israel, whose forefathers have lived here for hundreds - or even thousands - of years, cannot acquire a house or an apartment on its land.

Do you honestly even need me to link this up to prove it is bullshit?

The best legal brains looked for a way out: How to keep the discrimination alive in spite of the court's decision?

The best legal minds in Israel all convened for this one sacred purpose... keeping discrimination alive! Yeah, that sounds plausible. Nice article V, you're scraping the barrel with this one.
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Violet_Crumble Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-26-07 03:40 AM
Response to Reply #6
7. Clearly not. After all, I showed the dishonesty of 'Honest'Reporting in another thread...
Edited on Thu Apr-26-07 03:40 AM by Violet_Crumble
And yes, you are going to have to come up with links from credible sources to support yr claim of bullshit...
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Shaktimaan Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-26-07 03:55 AM
Response to Reply #7
8. Credible like zmag you mean? Because that's pretty damn credible there.
pot. kettle. black.
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Violet_Crumble Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-26-07 04:12 AM
Response to Reply #8
9. I think Uri Avnery's pretty credible...
At the least he's a whole lot more credible than any poster in this forum. Instead of attacking zmag, how about you address Uri Avnery's article and explain in a civil manner using credible sources (ie not sources that have an agenda that is pro-Palestinian or pro-Israeli) why he's wrong?
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Shaktimaan Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-26-07 10:36 AM
Response to Reply #9
14. I'd be happy to refute it.
But to say that Uri Avnery does not have an agenda is ridiculous.
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Violet_Crumble Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-28-07 04:07 AM
Response to Reply #14
15. I didn't say he didn't have an agenda...
What I said was he is far more credible than any poster in this forum...

So, feel free to refute the article using credible sources...
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msmcghee Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-28-07 08:07 AM
Response to Reply #15
17. The credibility of any poster in this forum is . .
. . a separate matter from the credibility of Uri Avnery.

We are a discussion forum. Our credibility is not being judged. Avnery's is. Because of the "recent article from an approved source" format - our purpose is to discuss what people like Uri Avnery have to say - their ideas and assertions. Some will agree - some disagree.

From your standpoint there would be no point to this forum. We can read the article by Uri Avnery from its source. We would not need a forum like this to discuss it.

When you say that he is far more credible than any poster in this forum you are saying that because he is an "authority" that you respect - anyone who disagrees with him must be wrong. You are effectively saying that you don't respect people in this forum who disagree with him (or you).

The idea is to discuss and offer reasons why you disagree or agree. Saying that you believe he has more credibility and therefore others must be wrong is simply an argument to authority - embedded in an insult. In this case it's also a classic non sequiter.
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Violet_Crumble Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-28-07 08:37 AM
Response to Reply #17
18. Well, I wasn't making a huge issue of it...
..but when it comes down to it, he does have more credibility than posters in this forum. What I would like posters in this bit of the thread to try to do is to refute the article, seeing as the refutation was promised quite a few posts back and hasn't eventuated. So, maybe we can both sit here and wait patiently for the refuting to start? :)
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msmcghee Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-28-07 09:05 AM
Response to Reply #18
19. Sure. I understand.
Edited on Sat Apr-28-07 09:09 AM by msmcghee
I don't have a dog in this particular fight (two-states/Avnery/Sodom). I was just commenting - that to say that those here who disagree with Avnery on this issue - are not as credible as Avnery in your opinion - is a pretty lame argument for a forum like this (and a bit insulting as well). And also, I don't mean to make a huge issue out of it. Just a gentle reminder.
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Violet_Crumble Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-28-07 09:30 AM
Response to Reply #19
20. There's a few Avnery articles floating round the forum today...
The two-states/Avnery/Sodom one is another thread. This one's about the JNF. Anyway, I think you got me wrong. I didn't say that anyone who disagrees with Avnery on this issue (the JNF) isn't as credible as Avnery. I didn't even say anyone who disagrees with him isn't as credible as him. What I said was he had more credibility than any poster in this forum, and as a poster in this forum that obviously includes myself :)
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