The Shmooze

Arabic Letters Flooding Into Knesset, Members Unhappy

By Nathan Jeffay

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It has to be one of the most common comments on the Middle East conflict. “If only everyone would resort to dialogue instead of turning to violence.” But when Knesset members start receiving emails from Arabs on the conflict, some seem to be unimpressed.

Ynet reports that lawmakers have started to receive “large numbers” of emails in Arabic, which according to Likud’s Yariv Levin who is quoted, contain “information about the Palestinian issue.”

He has concluded that the emails come from Palestinians who “seek to flood MKs’ mailboxes, apparently in order to disrupt their work.” But here’s a thought. What if they just result from a letter-writing campaign in Palestinian circles – like those commonly run across the free world - by people who want to influence things through the democratic process?

Yisrael Beiteinu lawmaker Faina Kirschenbaum seems to be offended by the emails just because they are in Arabic: she tells Ynet that anyone who wants Knesset members to read his message should write in Hebrew. Hmm, since the establishment of Israel in 1948, Hebrew and Arabic have been its sole official languages, but lawmakers receive dozens of emails in English every day and none complain about that.


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