The proposal by the Netanyahu government to enshrine Israel’s status legally as “the nation-state of the Jewish people” has met with much controversy. Placing the proposed legislation in its philosophical and historical context, Yehudah Mirsky argues that nationalism and the nation-state do much more good than is often assumed, and are preferable to universalism:
Why Should Israel Be a Nation-State at All?
Israeli Sovereignty Would Free Residents of the West Bank from Ottoman Law
To its opponents, the change in the legal status of certain areas of Judea and Samaria is “annexation;” to its proponents, it is the “extension of sovereignty” or the “application of Israeli law.” Naomi Khan argues that the last term best captures the practical implications of the measures in question. Since the Six-Day War, the Jewish state has continued to uphold the Ottoman legal system in areas of the West Bank under its jurisdiction—despite the fact that the Ottoman empire ceased to exist in 1922; “annexation” would end this situation. Setting aside the usual questions of foreign policy, security, and the possibility of Palestinian statehood, Khan argues that this change would be the one most felt by those who live there: