'Otherness' as the Underlying Principle in Israel's Asylum Regime
Israel Law Review, Vol. 42, No. 3, pp. 603-627, 2010
26 Pages Posted: 31 Jan 2010
Date Written: January 31, 2010
This Article aims to provide the first thorough description of the developing asylum system in the State of Israel. It argues that despite the inherent moral and doctrinal differences between asylum and immigration regimes, the Israeli asylum system is essentially an extension of Israel’s immigration and citizenship regime, which excludes the non-Jewish refugees and frames the refugee as the “other,” with the Palestinians and other enemy nationals facing maximum exclusion. While this phenomenon is not uncommon in today’s world, which suffers from “compassion fatigue,” diluted protection, and adherence to national self-interest, the Israeli example is exceptional for a number of reasons: 1) it came into being only decades after the rest of the democratic developed countries developed their asylum systems; 2) it is rooted in challenging - albeit not exceptional - geo-political conditions; and 3) it works against the background of a very unique immigration law.
Keywords: Otherness, Israel, Asylum Regime, Immigration, Citizenship, Compassion Fatigue, Immigration Law
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