Petition of Jews who immediately renounce the 1950 Israeli law of return

The following statement is released by Ned Curthoys and John Docker of the Committee for the Dismantling of Zionism:

We the undersigned submit that the 1950 Israeli Law of Return for Jews, which gives Jews alone the right to migrate to Israel and obtain citizenship, is a racist law and an affront to a just, democratic, and non-ethnically determined concept of citizenship.

There is little doubt that the Law of Return was and is a key instrument in the Zionist colonisation of what remains of historic Palestine, a law which worked in tandem with the Absentee Law of 1950 which allowed the Jewish state to expropriate the land of those Palestinians declared ”˜absentee’ but who were in fact forcibly prevented from returning to their original homes by the Israeli military. The Law of Return needs to be holistically interpreted as yet another modality of Zionist territorial nationalism and colonisation, similar in its function to the Jewish National Fund, which has reclamation of land for the Jewish people as its primary purpose and whose forestation policy aims to erase the traces of the Palestinian presence prior to 1948 and cover up the demolition of Palestinian villages. In this sense we do not regard the Right of Return as the law of a normal nation-state but as an aggressive weapon in the ongoing Zionist attempt to erase historic Palestine.

We submit that the notion of a ‘return’ by Jews who have lived in the diaspora for millennia is a dubious attempt to mystify a nationalist and colonialist endeavour that seeks to ensure a Jewish demographic majority in Israel and colonize the Palestinian West Bank with Zionist settlers. Not only is the Law of Return a devastating affront to all those Palestinians scattered throughout the world, many still in refugee camps, who are prevented from returning to their ancestral homes, as they are entitled to do under international law, but the Law of Return can only delegitimize the continuing presence of Palestinian Israelis, some 20% of Israel’s population, and fuel racist incitement against them, including the ominous possibility of the fulfillment of the Zionist dream of ”˜transferring’ the Palestinian population.

We diasporic Jews renounce the idea of living in a state which both formally and informally privileges one ethnicity, to the severe detriment of its sizeable minorities, the Palestinian and Bedouin minorities. A state that discriminates on the basis of race will never find true peace and security until it becomes a just society that respects international law and enters into dialogue with both its immediate region and the international community.

We renounce the right of return to Israel:

Ned Curthoys (Australia)

Mike Cushman (UK)

John Docker (Australia)

Rick Kuhn (Australia)

Steven Rose (UK)

Jonathan Rosenhead (UK)

Ron Witton (Australia)

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