From Riman Barakat in 972mag:
As an East Jerusalem resident, I am struck by a recent trend: many of my friends and acquaintances who hold Jerusalem identification cards – documents of permanent residency rather than Israeli citizenship – are quietly applying for and obtaining Israeli passports.
It’s not immediately clear why. Current residents of East Jerusalem – numbering over 350,000, or 38% of the city’s total population – already go about their daily lives, shop at Israeli malls, use Israeli services, frequent Israeli restaurants and bars, send their children to study at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, and receive Israeli social and health benefits. What does “upgrading their status” from East Jerusalem residents to citizens of Israel add? Why did East Jerusalem residents refuse the Israeli offer of citizenship in 1967, and why are they actively seeking to obtain it now, especially given that citizenship requires them to pledge the controversial oath of allegiance to the Israeli state?Of course! If Palestinian Arabs voluntarily choose to become Israeli citizens, it has to be a nefarious Jewish plot!
I believe the trend is the result of a well-planned and consistently applied Israeli strategy to pressure the Palestinian population of East Jerusalem.
It cannot possibly be that they see the Palestinian Authority is a corrupt dictatorship with ever-increasing totalitarian tendencies and they believe that their lives, and the lives of their families, would be infinitely better under Israeli sovereignty. No, that's crazy talk. It must be that Israel, by asking them to prove their residency status periodically, is really pressuring them to become Israeli citizens against their will.
Because, of course, as 972mag nutcases know all too well, those evil Jewish Zionists naturally want to pressure the hated Arabs of "East Jerusalem" to become Israeli citizens and increase the number of Arab citizens in the Jewish state. This must be another form of "ethnic cleansing."
(Here is also another way that Arab leaders infantilize their own people, not giving them credit for doing what they want to do and instead finding ways to blame Israel for Arabs acting in ways that don't adhere to their cherished - and often false - narrative.)
Barakat's agenda becomes a bit clearer later in this nonsensical piece:
As the PA turns a blind eye to the phenomenon of East Jerusalemites becoming Israelis, I wonder: does the PA still adhere to the vision of East Jerusalem as the future capital of Palestine? If not, the PA should start discussing the possibility of an Open City immediately, both internally and publicly.
Here we see the truth. To Barakat, Jerusalem being a Palestinian Arab capital is not the most important goal - the goal is to ensure that it is not Jewish!
You know how important it is for Jerusalem to be an Arab city, as we are constantly reminded? Well, it isn't really that important. Better it be under UN control than allowing Jews to have a say in how their capital is run.
This is entirely consistent with the Arab attitude towards Jerusalem in 1949, when all Arab countries (except for Jordan) pushed the UN to make Jerusalem an international city. Nothing then about the eternal importance of Jerusalem to Muslims, no cheer that the Old City was under Muslim control - no, to them, it was more important that all of Jerusalem - including the western side - be taken away from the Jews. And this is what Barakat is saying here.
Barakat, a Palestinian Arab who is now Co-Director of the Israel-Palestine Center for Research and Information - as liberal an organization as any Arab is likely to join - shows that even for her, the true goal is reducing the amount of land ruled by Jews, and not "Palestinian statehood." A Palestinian Arab state is just the means to that other goal, not the goal itself.
(h/t Arnold Roth)