For the Palestinians, Israel is a democracy for its Jewish citizens alone. For its Palestinian citizens (some 20 per cent) it is an ethnocracy. Israel is defined in law and in practice not as a state of all its citizens (as other modern industrialised nations are – at least formally) but as a state of all the Jews of the world.
This means that Jews from London, New York or Yemen with no family ties or history in the land, still have more rights to the land of Palestine that the native inhabitants of that land – the Palestinian people. This is the reality of Zionism.
We’ve lived so long under the spell of hierarchy—from god-kings to feudal lords to party bosses—that only recently have we awakened to see not only that “regular” citizens have the capacity for self-governance, but that without their engagement our huge global crises cannot be addressed. The changes needed for human society simply to survive, let alone thrive, are so profound that the only way we will move toward them is if we ourselves, regular citizens, feel meaningful ownership of solutions through direct engagement. Our problems are too big, interrelated, and pervasive to yield to directives from on high.
—Frances Moore Lappé, excerpt from Time for Progressives to Grow Up