[151. Racism of Israel

At a ceremony in which Cardinal O'Connor received the America's Democratic Legacy Award, Catholic New York of April 24 reported that the Cardinal "urged Jews to be proud and supportive of their spiritual homeland." The key word in this quotation, in my opinion, is "spiritual."

As an Arab Christian who is united in solidarity with the Palestinians, a great number of whom were expelled from their homeland, I can only applaud the Cardinal for pointing out that this homeland is a spiritual homeland.

Cardinal O'Connor "has denounced the evils of racism and anti-Semitism." But racism is still officially practiced in Israel. B'Tzelem, an Israeli human rights organization, reported that in the past 30 years some 38,500 housing units were built on land expropriated from Arabs and taken over by Jews. These housing unit were built for Jews, and only Jews. Non-Jews, even if they are Israeli citizens, need not apply.

This kind of racism should also be denounced.]

April 29, 1997