Finally, a member of the Israeli Arab minority has been approved for a place in the cabinet. Ghaleb Majadle, who was reelected to his Knesset seat in the 19th rank on the Labor Party’s list at the election last March, was confirmed by his new colleagues to a post of minister without portfolio.
Surprise, surprise, Avigdor Lieberman was the one cabinet minister to vote against the appointment.
“I have no problem with an Arab minister…I have a problem with the way it has been done,” said Lieberman. “His appointment is a blatantly political move to help [Labor Party Chairman Amir] Peretz with the primaries.”
Peretz said that Lieberman’s vote exposed “the truth about Lieberman’s racist views.”
(Yes, of course, the motivation in politics is quite often political, and yes, Lieberman is a racist.)
Arab parties also spoke out against the appointment. For instance:
“The [appointment] gives a seal of approval to the policy of racial discrimination against Arabs,” said a statement released by the Balad Party.