Exploring Extremist Israeli Policy; Banning the flying of the Palestinian Flag



Palestine supporting protesters gathering in the street of Berlin Germany to protest the Israeli governments aggression in the Gaza Strip

Matthias Jaylen Sandoval, Opinion Editor

Just three weeks after assuming power, the extreme right wing Israeli Minister of Defense Itimar Ben-Gvir unveiled a new policy in early January that promotes the ethnic and cultural erasure of the Palestinian people that can be considered a form of modern-day colonization.

Ben-Gvir has instructed all police and Israeli Defense Force (IDF) soldiers to remove Palestinian flags from all public spaces. This policy comes just weeks after a law was put in place that makes all the Israeli police direct subordinates of Israel’s minister of defense. The prohibition of the public flying of the Palestinian flag is currently in effect in Israel and Israel-occupied Palestine. 

Israel has no lawful right to occupy or have jurisdiction over Palestine, according to a recent study by the United Nations (UN) which calls Israel’s occupation of Palestinian territory, “unlawful under international law. However, with little to deter Israel from moving further into Palestinian territory and enforcing its law banning the display of Palestine’s flag even within Palestine’s own borders, this policy and its enforcement could agitate an already intense situation leading to more attacks from both sides.

This policy is not surprising considering Itimar Ben-Gvir’s background. Ben-Gvir is a well documented racist anti-Arab and a convicted criminal in Israel. In 2007, he was convicted for inciting racism and supporting terrorist organizations and is known for his racist chants like, “Death to the Arabs” and holding up signs saying, “Expel the Arab enemy.” In 2022, Ben-Gvir even gave a speech in honor of Rabbi Meir Kahane, founder of a known terrorist organization, the Kach Political Party. He gave this speech eight years after the Kach Political Party was classified as a terrorist group by both Israel and the United States after one of its followers, Baruch Goldstein, massacred 29 innocent Palestinians worshiping in a mosque in Hebron and the party came out in support of Goldstein’s heinous actions. If one still has doubts about Ben-Gvir’s views of the Arab community, Ben-Gvir even had a portrait of the mass murderer, Baruch Goldstein, in his living room.

The continued anti-Arab policies of the current Netanyahu administration is another step in the wrong direction when trying to find and maintain peace between the Palestinian and Israeli people. By taking away a flag that symbolizes the struggle for independence and statehood, the Israeli government is also attacking the Palestinian people’s freedom, identity, and freedom of speech. This, in my opinion, is the coup de grâce, the last straw. Due to this, the potential hope for peace has been diminished and will only escalate ongoing conflict.

A two-state solution is the most ideal and obvious solution for these countries, which are constantly in conflict due to many factors, including Israel’s constant colonization and aggression against Palestinians and laws such as the ban on the Palestinian flag that diminish the Palestinian presence and culture. 

A two-state solution is the most ideal and obvious solution for these countries

Naturally, Jewish people deserve their own promised land that is a safe haven for them, but so do Palestinians. Palestine deserves the same basic rights, freedom, and liberty that the free world has.

No one country is more entitled than the other to be safe from fear, retaliation, illegal occupation, displacement, violence, and instituting laws that are illegally enforced and sow the seed for continued war and bloodshed.

A two-state solution could eliminate all of this unnecessary aggression and violence, resulting in peace for all parties involved, if these agreements were maintained and adhered to by both countries. Banning the public flying of the Palestinian flag, especially in land that is legally Palestinian, is just the latest example of the Netanyahu government’s continued aggression against Palestine and its people. The current Anti-Arab and far-right policies make that peace and stability through a two-state solution impossible to achieve.

 In 2013 Barack Obama was quoted saying, “It is not fair that a Palestinian child cannot grow up in a state of her own, and lives with the presence of a foreign army that controls the movements of her parents every single day. It is not just when settler violence against Palestinians goes unpunished. It is not right to prevent Palestinians from farming their lands; to restrict a student’s ability to move around the West Bank; or to displace Palestinian families from their home.” 

Though former President Obama clearly supported the Palestinian people, neither his administration nor any other future administrations have come out to recognize Palestine as its own independent state.  The United States should follow suit with the United Nations and 139 other countries in order to support Palestine and its people and truly work to create a viable two-state solution. This could potentially be the catalyst to brokering long-term peace in the region. 

Write to your local officials, spread awareness of these issues, protest all the Israeli government’s anti-Arab policies, and make your voice heard. Let us all come together and stop this erasure of the Palestinian people and promote the possibility of peace between these two countries. 

Someday, may Palestine find liberty and freedom within their own borders.


Public Domain