Upset With Israel's 'Muslim-Christian' Look, Minister Aims to Make It More 'Jewish'

Housing and Construction Minister Yoav Galant is launching a project that would see Star of David-shaped decorations appearing in public spaces all over Israel

The Israeli flag flutters in front of the Dome of the Rock mosque and the city of Jerusalem, on December 1, 2017
THOMAS COEX/AFP

Housing and Construction Minister Yoav Galant is launching a project that would see Star of David-shaped decorations appearing in public spaces, in an attempt to counter what his ministry calls the country’s “Muslim-Christian look.”

“Along the country’s highways and footpaths, from the Golan Heights in the north to the Negev in the south, one can mainly see tall minarets which dominate the landscape, giving the country a Muslim-Christian look,” says an internal presentation prepared by the ministry, as reported on Thursday in Yedioth Ahronoth. “The landscape does not reflect the fact that the country is Israeli and Jewish,” it adds.

The proposed project will be discussed by the cabinet at its next meeting on Sunday.

The presentation features photos of the landscape today as well as images of what it will look like after the project is completed. The photos were taken in Jerusalem, Tel Aviv, along Highway 6 and in other locations. They show minarets surrounded by red circles, alongside which are prominent structures on which projected images of a Star of David are shown.

According to the new proposal, the administration charged with the 70th state anniversary celebrations will be responsible for placing the symbol at aerial and maritime entry points to Israel, at key points along the country’s lengthwise and transverse highways and in key locations in Jerusalem and other major cities.

“Even though the state’s Jewish character is a key element in its definition, standing at the base of its identity, as specified in the Declaration of Independence, this is not appropriately expressed in the state’s public spaces. In practice, anyone traveling the country’s roads will not encounter the symbols of a Jewish state which would emphasize its Jewish character” says the proposal which will be brought to the cabinet for approval.

Galant’s office would not comment on this report.