Thursday, May 24, 2012

Not All Israeli Citizens Are Equal

Yousef Munayyer is executive director of The Jerusalem Fund and its educational program, The Palestine Center, which is a member group of the US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation. This piece was published in The New York Times on May 23, 2012. 

I'm a Palestinian who was born in the Israeli town of Lod, and thus I am an Israeli citizen. My wife is not; she is a Palestinian from Nablus in the Israeli-occupied West Bank. Despite our towns being just 30 miles apart, we met almost 6,000 miles away in Massachusetts, where we attended neighboring colleges. 

A series of walls, checkpoints, settlements and soldiers fill the 30-mile gap between our hometowns, making it more likely for us to have met on the other side of the planet than in our own backyard. 

Never is this reality more profound than on our trips home from our current residence outside Washington.

Tel Aviv’s Ben-Gurion International Airport is on the outskirts of Lod (Lydda in Arabic), but because my wife has a Palestinian ID, she cannot fly there; she is relegated to flying to Amman, Jordan. If we plan a trip together — an enjoyable task for most couples — we must prepare for a logistical nightmare that reminds us of our profound inequality before the law at every turn.

Continue reading at The New York Times

Last week marked the 64th a
nniversary of the Nakba, a day when Palestinians commemorate the dispossession and ethnic cleansing of Palestine that resulted in more than 800,000 Palestinians becoming refugees. Yousef's story resonates with Palestinians across the world and exposes the apartheid policies of Israel towards Palestinians. 

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