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Israel's treatment of Arab minority

February 25, 2007

Re "Arabs say Israel is not just for Jews," Feb. 22

Your article describes Israel's discriminatory policies against its Arab citizens, which profoundly affect every aspect of their lives from health and education to employment and housing.

There are many countries that have large minorities that have managed to live in an equitable relationship. Israel has certainly not done this.

It is increasingly recognized that Israel's democracy is not reconcilable with being "a state of the Jews." But this recognition is slow to come in Israel and is not significantly quicker in the United States.

It is encouraging when newspapers of the importance of The Times carry articles setting out the problem.

MIRIAM M. REIK

New York

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How come Arabs see no problem in having more than a dozen Arab states, yet one Jewish state is a problem? One should put one's own house in order before throwing stones at another's.

PAUL D. BLUMSTEIN

Rancho Palos Verdes

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From the headline on, the front-page article about the Palestinian minority living inside Israel refers to them consistently -- using the official Israeli terminology -- as "Arabs" or "Israeli Arabs," even though they refer to themselves as "Palestinians," because that is what they are.

Israel gains from referring to Palestinians as generic Arabs because it has long tried to deny the existence of the Palestinian people.

What does The Times gain from parroting Israel's official racist ideology?

SAREE MAKDISI

Los Angeles

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