Palestinian President Mahmud Abbas strongly rejected the notion there was anything such as an Israeli Jewish state. “A Jewish state, what is that supposed to mean? You can call yourselves as you like, but I don’t accept it and I say so publicly.” Abbas insisted the topic was extensively discussed at the Annapolis conference in 2007 and rejected by Palestinian representatives. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has demanded Palestinians accept the concept as part of an eventual peace deal. The Israel Foreign Ministry reacted to comments by Abbas by saying, “recognition of Israel as the sovereign state of the Jewish people is an essential and necessary step in the historic process of reconciliation between Israel and Palestinians.”
There are two issues inherent in using the expression, “a Jewish state.” One, certainly pertains to Arabs who live in Israel and constitute at least fifteen percent of the population. Where does such a statement leave them as citizens and as humans? Second, there is need to resolve issues relating to Palestinian refugees. The Netanyahu demand is merely a cover to create problems in resolving conflicts with Palestinians. Israel can call itself what it desires but it can not force its own citizens, let alone others, to abide by that concept.
Jews in the United States of America represent less than 2% of the population. We are pleased that Americans do not refer to the USA as a Christian nation.