Latest update: December 24th, 2013
A blog posting on The Nation website on Monday incorrectly quoted an 18-month-old poll to call Israel “racist” over the issue of how to deal with illegal African infiltrators.
“Here’s a shocking fact from a poll conducted by the Israel Democracy Institute…: fully one-third of Israelis say that unlawful, vigilante violence against non-Jewish African immigrants is fine with them,” wrote Bob Dreyfuss.
After correctly stating that the poll showed that a large majority of Likud and Shas party voters view the presence of the infiltrators as a “cancer,” he added that the report states there is a “national consensus” of an overwhelming majority of 83% of the Jews expressing support for demonstrations against the flood of illegal Africans seeking a higher standard of living. Most of them are not refugees.
Dreyfuss did not quote any source that Israelis “say that unlawful, vigilante violence against non-Jewish African immigrants is fine with them.” He apparently equated “demonstrations” with violence.”
The Jewish Press checked the poll. It was dated May 2012, and the reference to violence concerned violent protests in south Tel Aviv at a time when many illegal African infiltrators were involved in rapes, murders and daily thefts.
“Very surprisingly, considering that most people do not tend to openly report sympathy for acts that are broadly condemned by society, 33.5% of the Jews said they could identify with the use of violence (62% could not),” the Israel Democracy Report’s “Peace Index” poll stated.
It continued, “A segmentation by Knesset voting for the Jewish sample indicated that the only party for which a majority of voters identified with the violent acts was Shas. A segmentation by religiosity revealed that only a minority in all groups identified with the violence.”
The blogger had to dig out an 18-month-old poll, which was taken when tensions were high because of rape, murder and daily theft by many illegal infiltrators, in order to bring out the “shocking fact,” which is fiction, that most Israelis think “violence is fine.”
Dreyfuss’ case was so weak that he had to quote Haaretz’s Gideon Levy, one of the most anti-religious and anti-Zionist journalists in Israel.
The blogger quoted Levy as having written – apparently more than year ago since Levy refers to a Knesset Member who no longer is in the legislature – that “it’s Israel that made the African migrants a problem” because of “incitement” by those against keeping the infiltrators in the country.
Levy was quoted by Dreyfuss as suggesting that “the state should allow those already here to work, to rebuild their lives, and offer them the prospect of becoming citizens through a gradual, careful process. That’s how it’s done in normal countries. Israel is too small, too weak to do this? Nonsense, merely too racist.”
Would Levy say the same thing about the United States?
Results this week from a new Rasmussen poll stated that 60 percent of Americans said the federal government is not aggressive enough in deporting immigrants living illegally in the United States. Only 29 percent of the respondents said the United States should stop deporting immigrants until Congress comes up with a new immigration reform policy.
Only 19 percent said that illegal immigrants should be granted immediate legal status.
Is the United States “too small, too weak to offer them the prospect of becoming citizens through a gradual, careful process. to do this?” Or is this “nonsense, [and] merely too racist.”?
About the Author: Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu is a graduate in journalism and economics from The George Washington University. He has worked as a cub reporter in rural Virginia and as senior copy editor for major Canadian metropolitan dailies. Tzvi wrote for Arutz Sheva for several years before joining the Jewish Press.
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