Israelis typically cite the right of Arab Israelis to vote and hold office to rebuff their enemies’ accusations of apartheid. Never has the argument...

Israelis typically cite the right of Arab Israelis to vote and hold office to rebuff their enemies’ accusations of apartheid. Never has the argument been more striking than it is in the aftermath of the second national election in less than six months. With the final tally not complete at press-time, it appears that the Joint List, a coalition of political parties comprised of Arab Israelis, will emerge as the third-largest bloc. Even more stunning is the possibility that if the top two vote getters decide to enter a unity government, an Arab citizen will assume the role of head of opposition in the Israeli parliament. What compelled The Media Line to admonish its readership weeks ago that one of the lead stories that would emerge from the election is the Arab sector’s influence and position is a series of incidents including indications that Jewish Israelis on the left were considering a vote for the Joint List as a gesture of support for that population sector.

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