Azmi Bishara

Rumors are spreading about the eminent resignation of Dr. Bishara from the Israeli Knesset. While I have noticed this since it came on As-Sinnara website 2 days ago, I thought it would be better to wait on it before I can say what I thought about the whole issue.
Dr. Bishara, is really one of the most prominent thinker in the Arab world. He is not only a writer. Bishara moved in 1996 from his position as a professor of philosophy and cultural studies at Birzeit University.
What impresses me with Dr. Bishara is the logic of his arguments. Although he identifies himself as part of the Arab-Islamic culture (That's the identification he uses despite being Christian), he has been fighting for equal Arab rights in Israel. He coined the famous phrase "a state for all its citizens" and made it the logo of his campaign for true democracy.
The phrase itself tells you a lot about Israel. It tells you that it does not act as a state for its Arabs, and that it is only and primarily a Jewish state. Any democracy in that context can only be seen as Jewish Democracy, just like you could say that Apartheid South Africa had whites democracy.
Bishara used his service in the Knessets 14-17, to raise attention to these issues which he saw as most important in terms of the relationship between the state and its citizens. I believe by focusing on the root of the problem rather than its symptoms (such as low employment rates, poverty etc...), while Israel is not acting in anyway to change this situation, and while the "national identity" field will continue to appear in the ID cards of all Israelis, and will continue to determine how the state treats this citizen, he has raised people's awareness on where the root of the problem lies.
He used the Knesset as a platform to discuss his ideas and vision. If he leaves, he will sure be thinking of another platform whether this be Al-Jazeera, a university teaching hall or, as many Israelis wish, a defendant seat in an Israeli court room.

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