Progressive politicians and the left-wing media are using three terms interchangeably regarding Arab residents of Jewish Israeli-owned homes in the Sheikh Jarrah section of Jerusalem. Doing so is not only inaccurate but inflammatory.
Here is a primer to understand the difference of the terms:
- Eviction is the act of removing a single entity (person/ family) from a single location.
- Expulsion is the act of removing a single entity from an entire region.
- Ethnic Cleansing is the act of removing an entire ethnic/ religious group from an entire region.
The situation in Sheikh Jarrah is an eviction. It pertains to Arab squatters who have not paid rent to their landlords for several years. These tenants are not being forced from the neighborhood and are free to move into adjacent apartment buildings inside of Jerusalem. The Israeli courts, which have jurisdiction on the matter whether someone believes that the eastern section of Jerusalem is Israel or believes Israel is responsible as the “Occupying Force,” ruled that the evictions are legal.
This case is discrete. Israel is not involved in a massive expulsion of Arab residents from Jerusalem. As proof, from 1980, the year Israel formalized Jerusalem as its eternal undivided capital in its Basic Laws, until 2019, the Arab population in Jerusalem grew 3.4 times, dwarfing the Jewish population growth rate which was only 1.9 times over that period. The number of households (homes/ apartments) for Arabs rose 188% since 1990 compared to just 64% for Jews. Further, all Arab residents can apply for Israeli citizenship and these past few years have seen a spike in Arabs becoming Israelis.
In sharp contrast, an example of ethnic cleansing can be seen by what the Jordanian Arabs did to Jews in Jerusalem from 1948 to 1954. First they invaded Israel and killed or expelled all of the Jews from the “West Bank” region they illegally seized. They destroyed 58 synagogues in the Old City of Jerusalem and barred any Jews from even visiting their holiest location during their duration of illegal rule. And they annexed the entire area including eastern Jerusalem, passed a law making it illegal to sell land to Jews and granted citizenship to anyone “not being Jewish.“
That’s actual ethnic cleansing, which is a very different dynamic than Arab residents of Jerusalem have experienced under Israeli rule.
But the alt-left is doing its utmost to paint Israel as racist:
- Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) said that Israel “is practicing ethnic cleansing.“
- Ilhan Omar (D-MN) said “This [Jerusalem] deputy mayor is describing ethnic cleansing here, yet everyone is [sic] the West is pretending that’s not what’s happening to Palestinians.“
- Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez spoke about “the expulsions of Palestinians.“
- The New York Times wrote about “the plight of six Palestinian families facing expulsion from their homes.“
These lies have inflamed the passions of radical jihadists. Hundreds of people have died and millions of dollars of damage has been done in large part because of the incitement.
Progressive politicians and the far left media have a direct hand in the deaths and injuries of hundreds of Arabs and Jews in and around Israel over the past weeks. While their lies and smears caused horrific damage thousands of miles away, it is a price the alt-left is willing to pay to boost their bona fides with anti-Zionist extremists who support them and keep them in positions of influence.
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