Mara’ana, Tell Them No

Odeh Bisharat
Odeh Bisharat
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Ibtisam Mara’ana-Menuhin.
Odeh Bisharat
Odeh Bisharat

After the Knesset passed the nation-state law, and after the Jewish judges on the High Court of Justice unanimously approved the law that determines that there are two types of citizens, the Labor Party decided to appoint MK Ibtisam Mara’ana as an alternate member on its behalf on the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee.

And I wonder, does this party lack defense experts, to the point that it is forced to use an Arab acquisition who only a moment earlier was officially declared a second-class citizen? And in general, what will Mara’ana do there, when the members of her people in Gaza and the West Bank are under occupation and siege, and when millions of refugees, a product of the ongoing Nakba are living under an existential threat in Arab countries?

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Will she be cast in the role of the compassionate face of the occupation, the sugar cubes in the cup of despair of the siege? Mara’ana must tell them, “I will not join you.” In general, I would expect every Arab citizen and progressive Jew to say that, but unfortunately it is actually our good Jewish friends who are jumping for joy at the sight of her disgraceful appointment, as though this were another step in the integration of the Arabs.

Well, maybe it’s integration, but it’s the kind whose participants are involved in the job of maintaining a building that is morally rotten, which a normal country would hasten to demolish to the foundations. A building in which they plan how to make the lives of millions miserable, in an attempt to push them beyond the border. So excuse me friends, we aren’t playing this game. If you want to occupy – occupy. If you want to send your sons to raid the rooms of Palestinian children in the middle of the night – send them. We won’t be involved in the betrayal.

After corrupting the souls of young Jews in the work of maintaining this sickening project, the diplomatic-security establishment is now working to corrupt the soul of the Arab, one reason being to ease the burden on its collective conscience. “Look,” the establishment wants to tell the world, “even a talented female Arab film director is a partner in the formulation of our justified security policy.” Ibtisam Mara’ana will not serve as a fig leaf for the closure and the belligerence against the Palestinian people.

Recently MK Yariv Levin of Likud, with a victors’ smile on his face, congratulated the MKs of the United Arab List on joining the Zionist movement, as he put it, because they are members of a government that approves the building of the settlement of Evyatar in the occupied territories. 

Clearly Levin’s intention was to embarrass the UAL, and still, and that’s the main thing, if Zionism has reached a situation in which it is in need of the native people of this land to adorn its acts and grant legitimacy to its practices – that means that it is in distress. On the one hand they pass the nation-state law that excludes the natives; on the other they are trying to pull the excluded ones into the circles of government so that they can serve as an alibi for the acts against their people.

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