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B’nai B’rith International Executive Vice President Daniel S. Mariaschin sent the following letter to the Washington Post:

“An Israel Equal for All, Jewish or Not” (Sept. 28) presents a disjointed and unjust argument against Israel being a Jewish nation. The writer paints a misguided picture of Israel and misrepresents the historical imperative and religious identity of the Jewish people.

Patricia Marks Greenfield argues in the Washington Post that Israel should lose its Jewish identity and become a totally secular nation, presumably to save it and the region from turmoil.

This neatly mimics the Palestinian narrative that Israel is the cause of all troubles in the region.

Why does she single out Israel? According to a study by the Pew Research Center, 49 countries are majority Muslim.  Many of these nations are defined by their religions, where decisions about politics and social issues are first and foremost based on the foundation of religion.

When she writes of being in Israel during this summer’s rocket invasion from Gaza, Greenfield leaves out some important information: “I have a new understanding and respect for what Israelis go through in wartime.”  But she fails to note that such attacks on Israel occur every day, not just in “war time.”  The Hamas and Hezbollah terror groups, which vow to “wipe Israel from the map,” have consistently directed missiles into Israel.  

Israel is a democracy. It has a free press, independent courts, multiple political parties and offers equal rights for citizens. Under Israeli leadership, members of all religions can safely visit holy sites in Jerusalem—something Jews were denied when Jerusalem was divided.

By proposing “Gaza and the West Bank must inevitably become part of Israel,” she is suggesting a bi-national state. 

Her prescription is to take away its Jewish identity by having a single state. Of the 193 nations within the United Nations, isn’t there room for one in which the Jewish people are a majority?

                                                                                                    Daniel S. Mariaschin
                                                                                                    B’nai B’rith International Executive Vice President