On the double-sided phenomenon of Mansour Abbas
After its fourth and most recent elections, a precedent was set in the Jewish state; his symbol, the Arab member of the Knesset Mansour Abbas. This assessment is valid regardless of whether Benjamin Netanyahu manages to form a new government or whether the Israelis are heading for a fifth round of elections.
Abbas has expressed his willingness to provide support and cover for a new right-wing Zionist government led by the Likud leader. The Financial Times did not hesitate to call him a “kingmaker” in Israel. In the Arab world, reactions ranged between bewilderment and condemnation.
For reasons different from those usually advanced, man does not deserve sympathy. However, condemning him the old-fashioned way (traitor, etc.) does not convince those who understand what is happening among Israeli Arabs. Indeed, the position of four deputies whose parliamentary bloc is led by Abbas cannot be reduced to insults and accusations of treason. It is, again, an old tool for understanding a new and complex situation.
Abbas was born in 1974, so he does not belong to the generations that endured the Nasser era and the Palestinian resistance that excited the Palestinians of 1948. Of course, he did not live in the era that did. preceded, when the trade union cadres revolved around Marxism and communist organizations. He woke up to public life with the Madrid Conference of 1991 and the Oslo Accords of 1993, when it seemed, albeit in principle, that peace was possible between the State of Israel, a fifth of its inhabitants, Arabs and Palestinians and Arabs. outside. The dissolution of this perspective, with the assassination of Yitzhak Rabin and then the Second Intifada, did not have a positive effect on the lives of the Arabs of 1948.
These developments have been accompanied by a global change that has seen the segment prevail over the compression and fragmentation of chosen struggles rather than unifying them. This change has also placed emphasis on the identities of groups, religious and ethnic, as well as on the search for their rights as members of these groups.
The other deputies were born between 1956, Mazen Ghnaim, and 1972, Said al-Harumi, and in the middle is Walid Taha, 1968. The average age is therefore 53.5 years. Abbas studied dentistry. Harumi studied physics. Taha studied political science. All three are graduates, needless to say, from Israeli universities.
Unlike the movements of political Islam in much of the Arab world, whose positions on the conflict with Israel have become increasingly radical, an inclusive tendency, facilitated by the cheap pragmatism that political Islam allows, s is seized by Mansour Abbas and his supporters. This was perhaps reinforced by the fact that Israeli Arabs knew nothing about Arabs hostile to Israel, other than their estrangement. Without a doubt, Abbas knows that the Hamas movement in Gaza, before being established as such, cooperated with the Israelis, going against the PLO, and the Mujama al-Islamy (Islamic Center) founded by Sheikh Ahmad Yassin is one of the fruits of this cooperation. As for the Palestinian Authority in Ramallah, it cannot ignore security coordination with Israeli security. If this is permissible for those whom Israel occupies in one way or another, why should it not be the same for Israeli citizens?
Mansour Abbas and his companions separated from the Muslim Brotherhood in 1995 due to differences over the Oslo accords, then the Islamic movement in Israel split into a “ northern ” wing opposed to the agreement under the leadership of Sheikh Raed Salah and a “ southern ” wing led by Sheikh Abdullah Nimer Darwish, who supported the agreement. The former refused to work in Israeli political institutions, which included refraining from running for Knesset seats, while the latter, the group to which Abbas belongs, has been running for office since 1996.
The search for integration is therefore nothing new in this milieu, which considers that the policies of recalcitrance and isolation have not led to anything in the past and that they will not bear fruit in the future either. . As for what they hope to achieve from integration, is an increase in the provision of services to Arab towns and villages, as well as a larger, more serious and less cynical role for the state in combating the spread of crime ravaging Arab society. “We,” as Abbas said in a recent speech, “don’t want to be on the sidelines, and we won’t agree to be outside the circle. Either we are full citizens with all rights, whether national, religious or civil, or other options are put on the table. ”
Moreover, integration in this sense is not the problem, especially since we are de facto halfway there. As for the other half that is hoped for, it is equality and Arab citizens who receive the rights they have been deprived of. This is, if we ignore the outdated rhetoric, a major gain.
On the other hand, the problem is that the call for integration is accompanied by an increasing Israeli shift to the right and an increased reluctance to grant Arabs their rights. The 2018 “ Jewish Nation-State Law ” talks about it. The last four elections and the distribution of votes confirm this.
For these reasons, it seems that skepticism towards Abbas seeking to integrate himself into the Israeli far right first is justified, especially with the religious faction who share similar views with him on women. , homosexuals and traditions. We know that the shift in political morality and political morality has long occupied Islamists and opportunists, especially when politics and morality both seem to be hampered. For this reason, the angst over Abbas’s form of integration is perhaps no less severe than that arising from the isolationism of the nihilists. So let’s watch carefully, no matter what, with keen eyes!