Troubling Statistics from Israel

According to the New Israel Fund, "in a survey about racist attitudes in Israel published last week by NIF grantee Center Against Racism and Defamation to mark International Anti-Racism Day: 41 percent of Israeli Jews feel that the State should encourage emigration of Arab citizens, while 40 percent of Israeli Jews would be happy if there were separate leisure and entertainment establishments for Arabs and Jews. The survey also found that 68 percent of Israeli Jews would refuse to live in the same apartment building as Arabs, while 46 percent of Jews would not let an Arab visit their home."

In my view and from my own limited experience in Israel, one reason why this type of attitude persists is because there is no common ground for Jews to learn more about Arabs as people and as friends.   I continue to work constructively to help build bridges between Jews and Arabs in Israel with the hope that these statisitcs will decline when the next such survey is completed.

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