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T-Space at The University of Toronto Libraries >
Indigenous Law Journal >
Fall 2007, Volume 6, No. 1 >

Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/17138

Title: Israeli Arabs: Between the Nation and the State
Authors: Saif-Alden Wattad, Mohammed
Issue Date: 1-Oct-2007
Publisher: Indigenous Law Journal
Abstract: The article addresses the case of Israeli Arabs as a touchstone case for national minorities who live in constitutional democracies. The author argues that Israeli Arabs may not identify themselves as Palestinians but rather as Israelis, for being Palestinian is a matter of citizenship, while Israeli Arabs are citizens only of the state of Israel. However, acknowledging the hybrid identity of Israeli Arabs, namely, being part of the Arab nation as well as legal citizens of the state of Israel, the author structures a conceptual distinction between nationhood and statehood. It is the author’s view that while nationhood reflects the notion of family-hood, statehood reflects the mere existence of a political entity. Following the logical theory underlying the above-mentioned distinction, the author inquires into its practicalities. He contends that while nationhood requires patriotism, statehood demands loyalty. It is his view that the national identity of Israeli Arabs does not and must not undermine their citizenship identity as Israelis. Furthermore, the author asserts that Israeli Arabs, as a national minority, should be entitled to collective group-based rights, which enable them to preserve their national identity. On the one hand, he acknowledges the inherent correlation between rights and duties, thus asserting that Israeli Arabs must express their loyalty through inter alia military service and symbols of the state. On the other hand, the author calls on the state of Israel to adapt its official symbols, such as the flag and the anthem, in a manner that expresses the Israeli features of the state rather than its Jewish characteristics.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/17138
ISSN: 1703-4566
Rights: Indigenous Law Journal
Appears in Collections:Fall 2007, Volume 6, No. 1

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