Can Israel be both Jewish and Democratic?

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What does it mean to be Jewish, if this classifies you in law as a member of a collective that oppresses others?

Join us for an online panel with
Avraham Burg, Richard Silverstein,
Miri Weingarten & Adam Sutcliffe

Tuesday 9th March 2021  6.00-7.30pm GMT via Zoom

We will discuss

The Israeli Nation State Law, Jewish Identify & the Ongoing Struggle for Palestinian Rights

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For Avraham Burg, former Speaker of the Knesset and a prominent and distinctive voice in Israeli politics since the 1980s, it means that he can no longer accept membership of that group.

In response to Israel’s ‘Nation State Law’ of 2018, widely regarded as formalising the supremacy of Jews over the country’s non-Jewish citizens, Burg has petitioned through the Israeli courts to have his official designation as a Jew revoked. Burg’s arguments sharply highlight the contradictions between Israel’s discriminatory practices towards Palestinians and its international presentation as an outpost of liberal democracy.

This panel discussion, hosted by Independent Jewish Voices, will explore these issues, asking how the contestation of Jewish identity in Israel might resonate in Europe and North America, and how these arguments might productively strengthen campaigns in support of Palestinian dignity and rights.

Avraham Burg is one of Israel’s leading public intellectuals and political thinkers. He has published numerous books, including The Holocaust Is Over; We Must Rise From its Ashes (2008), Very Near To You: Human Readings of the Torah (2012), and In Days To Come: A New Hope for Israel (2018). He is a former Speaker of the Israeli Knesset and former head of the Jewish Agency.

Richard Silverstein is a journalist and blogger who reports on the Israeli national security state and Diaspora-Israel relations. His blog is Tikun Olam, and he publishes at Middle East Eye, Al Jazeera and Jacobin Magazine.

Miri Weingarten, for many years a campaigner for social justice and human rights in Israel/Palestine, is a London-based solicitor currently acting for victims of the Grenfell Tower fire. She is also active with the migrant rights group Haringey Welcome.

Adam Sutcliffe teaches History at King’s College London. His latest book is What Are Jews For?: History, Peoplehood, and Purpose (2020).

Founded in 2007, Independent Jewish Voices (www.ijv.org.uk) is a network of Jews in Britain who dissent from uncritical support for Israel. We have a shared commitment to human rights and a just and peaceful solution to the conflict in Israel/Palestine.

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