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Palestinian Arabs, Aliyah--and Anusim

Reader comment on item: Ending the Palestinian "Right of Return"

Submitted by Martin H. Katchen (United States), Jan 19, 2012 at 18:24

It needs to be stressed that in limiting it's citizenship, Israel is only behaving in accordance with the "derech eretz", (the way of the land) of the Middle East. Many Mideast countries limit citizenship. Kuwait and Saudi Arabia and Bahrain are the prime examples. Kuwait and Bahrain limit citizenship to Sunnis and people who were born of stock that was in the country before a certain date. Saudi Arabia limits "citizenship" to the al Saudi Clan. And these are respected nations despite the "Arab Spring".

The so-called "peace (piece) process" has bought Israel 20 years to successfully increase it's birthrate and aliyah rate. Today, Israel is not in danger of being demographically overwhelmed if it grants all Arabs within the former British Mandate of Palestine Israeli citizenship. The real danger comes from a governing coalition of newly empowered Arabs and Leftist parties approving a Law of Return for so called Palestinians living outside of Israel. That is why this Supreme Court decision is welcome.

Israel can increase its Jewish population (or at least decrease it's percentage of hostile Muslims) by improved aliyah, though that is a subject that Prof. Pipes may want to address separately. Besides the Jews of France who are making aliyah rapidly, there is another, almost untapped source for Aliyah, the Anusim of Latin America and the United States.

They come from Jews who fled the Spanish and Portuguese Inquisition in the 16th and 17th Centuries and because they would not marry Indians and other Spaniards would not marry them, many of them are actually halakhically Jewish if someone can photograph Catholic parish records in the towns they live in to prove it. And they loathe Catholicism. They are no more distant from Judaism than many of the Russians who have been accepted for aliyah.

Unfortunately, the Jewish community has been remiss in outreach to this segment of the community, largely due to snobbery by Sephardim who practiced Judaism openly and did not succumb to the Inquisition. And Evangelical Christians and Messianic congregations have opportunistically converted many of them to their brand of "Messianic Judiasm".

But not all. And many of these people are in a precarious position, particularly in Mexico and Central America due to persecution by drug gangs and by militant Catholic-fascist groups like El Yunque. With outreach, they (at least those who haven't already become Messianic Christians) would qualify for aliyah, although re-conversion might be neccesary to satisfy all halakhic requirements. As would those who are in the US illegally, don't belong in the US but have no real home in their home countries to safely go back to. Outreach followed by legal conversion and aliyah would solve their problem and they would be as readily absorbed into Israel as the Russian aliyah.

There are probably several million Anusim who potentially could make aliyah. They are enough to tip the balance irrevocably against Muslims in Eretz Yisroel. With 3 million new Israelis, Israel could safely extend citizenship to Arabs living in Judea and Samaria. With 6 million new Israelis, Israel could even look at reabsorbing Jordan. And there are at least that many Anusim in Latin America.

The influx of Anusim would be bound to be controversial. Hezbollah is already in Mexico's 200,000 Mexicans of Lebanese extraction and terrorism might be likely. Any major influx of Anusim might well draw the disapproval of the United States Government, since it would threaten US policy. How far the US might go to stop such an aliyah, with it's post-9/11 powers is another question to be explored.

Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".


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Reader comments (57) on this item

Title Commenter Date Thread
A Unified Israel is a Strong Israel - United State of Israel [287 words]YJ DraimanAug 13, 2015 18:33224686
The Law of Return is for The Jews, the option to return to Greater Israel [188 words]YJ DraimanJul 13, 2015 16:48224182
1The biggest Fallacy [90 words]saraFeb 14, 2012 18:55193375
This poll cannot be correct. Full stop. [27 words]Israeli citizenFeb 8, 2012 15:18193213
Supreme Court's Landmark Decision [84 words]P. SchwartzFeb 8, 2012 00:11193189
5My Christian Bible says all of Israel belongs to the Jews. [32 words]Phil GreendJan 27, 2012 21:30192855
2Be Very Afraid [100 words]Barry BlackJan 26, 2012 20:23192840
typo? [12 words]
w/response from Daniel Pipes
roxanneJan 23, 2012 09:42192748
Not a typo, just too many suicide bombings in Israel to keep track of [62 words]saraJan 23, 2012 19:59192748
3Here's A Right To Return For Arabs/Muslims [19 words]Clifford IshiiJan 22, 2012 19:10192740
3Isn't this just the indigenous population returning? [70 words]BJJan 20, 2012 22:55192717
3Ah, yes- the 'Why Can't we all just Get Along' concept [144 words]saraJan 23, 2012 20:19192717
And what of the Israeli refugees? [56 words]stanley bJan 20, 2012 16:27192708
settlers living peacefully in the West Bank ?!! [42 words]evaJan 23, 2012 15:17192708
Yes, peaceful settlers [130 words]stanley bJan 23, 2012 20:06192708
1Palestinian Arabs, Aliyah--and Anusim [590 words]Martin H. KatchenJan 19, 2012 18:24192699
1The True Jews must and will return before it's all over [304 words]DEBORAH THE JUDGEFeb 2, 2012 10:04192699
Territorial blackmail must be stopped. [31 words]BenJan 19, 2012 11:35192690
1What about Settlers? [68 words]saraJan 20, 2012 16:41192690
answer to Sara [39 words]BenJan 23, 2012 07:22192690
State of Israel [252 words]Colette BahrJan 19, 2012 08:51192688
9Absurd [75 words]Matt Wordigan - LiverpoolJan 18, 2012 11:55192673
5Tit for tat must be the game [212 words]NuritGJan 18, 2012 00:49192664
3Good news, but not enough [51 words]steveJan 17, 2012 19:30192660
10Amazement [150 words]saraJan 17, 2012 19:27192659
Four towns, a Seat and a Smile [209 words]Jay1Jan 18, 2012 20:42192659
1Right of return [52 words]stanAug 15, 2013 15:47192659
Why the Right to Return is Not Exclusive [403 words]M. ToveyJan 17, 2012 16:48192656
Dear Mr. Tovey [104 words]Debanjan BanerjeeJan 29, 2012 21:54192656
1Poor Comparison [554 words]M. ToveyJan 30, 2012 19:26192656
5Debanjan Banerjee on 'pedagogy of the oppressed' [135 words]PrashantJan 31, 2012 02:33192656
To Mr. Banerjee [108 words]JeffJan 31, 2012 13:26192656
Dear Mr, Jeff [295 words]Debanjan BanerjeeFeb 1, 2012 22:36192656
3What happened to your claim of banned books? [448 words]JeffFeb 2, 2012 20:46192656
Dear Mr. Jeff [661 words]Debanjan BanerjeeFeb 3, 2012 21:56192656
6'Debanjee, a source of double standards per excellent [1116 words]Peter HallFeb 5, 2012 20:51192656
1Debanjan is not a true representative of Indian people [169 words]PrashantFeb 5, 2012 21:59192656
3Ignorance is bliss; Debanjan's a happy man. [372 words]JeffFeb 12, 2012 13:09192656
Dear Mr. Jeff [514 words]Debanjan BanerjeeFeb 13, 2012 06:13192656
5Debanjan, greetings from the real world [808 words]JeffFeb 14, 2012 13:24192656
4Debanjan will never understand what freedom of speech is and how America practices it [141 words]PrashantFeb 15, 2012 01:07192656
Two States - Greater Israel for the Jewish people and Jordan for the Arabs and 120,440 sq. km. formerly Jewish land in Arab Countries [130 words]YJ DraimanJul 13, 2015 17:19192656
2No Two States [82 words]M ToveyJul 16, 2015 11:34192656
Jews in the Land of Israel are: indigenous - aboriginal - native - home-grown - Jewish historical ancestral land undisputed [1063 words]YJ DraimanMay 22, 2016 02:42192656
The law of the land [155 words]Rebecca MouldsJan 17, 2012 12:12192649
Slip through is one thing [130 words]sandraJan 18, 2012 17:01192649
It's a scary thought [60 words]Rebecca MouldsJan 18, 2012 19:52192649
Too Ironic, isn't it? [132 words]sandraJan 19, 2012 17:01192649
Ending the Palestinian "Right of Return" [65 words]Balarabe AbbaJan 17, 2012 12:03192648
1Arab emigration from Israel to other countries should be encouraged. [47 words]Robby FeinsteinJan 18, 2012 01:42192648
3A nice dream, not a reality [154 words]saraJan 21, 2012 16:46192648
4Arab emigration [45 words]RexJan 22, 2012 14:21192648
7What do the Arab world have such double standards? [144 words]Peter HallJan 23, 2012 19:42192648
Dear Mr. Rex [50 words]Debanjan BanerjeeJan 29, 2012 21:51192648
12no discrimination [315 words]the Grand Infidel of KaffiristanJan 31, 2012 00:38192648
2No Comparison Between America and the 'Palestinian' Situation [297 words]M. ToveyJan 31, 2012 15:42192648
2Dear Debanjanjee Banerjee [15 words]RexJan 31, 2012 20:42192648

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Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

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