The Canaanist Platform translated by James S. Diamond

The Canaanist Platform

translated by

James S. Diamond

The symbol of the Canaanist movement was
the first letter of the Hebrew alphabet, Alef.


Homeland or Holy Land?: The "Canaanite" Critique of Israel

Indiana University Press
pages 65-67
originally published in Hebrew as
"Platform of the Center for Young Hebrews"
in Alef, no. 11 (November 1951)

The Table of Contents can be found at the end of this
document and also by clicking the section and paragraph headings.

The Center for Young Hebrews calls for:


1. the promotion of self-definition of all the inhabitants of the State of Israel, regardless of religion, faith-community, or origin, and the recognition of the differentiation from Judaism of the nation that resides in the State of Israel

2. a policy founded on the recognition of the similarity of fate of the State of Israel and its neighbors, and of the role of Israel and of the other constructive forces in the region (known as "the Fertile Crescent") as vanguard in the struggle for the revival, liberation, and development of the entire region

3. the removal of religious and communal barriers which incite animosity and Israel and its neighbors, dependence on foreign powers and [a state of] continuous material and spiritual crisis

4. the separation of religion from state, liberation from all manifestations of theocracy, a secular way of life, and the institution of a completely secular authority in all areas of life

5. official granting of full political, civil, and social rights and obligations to all citizens of the state, regardless of religion, faith-community, or origin, on the basis of a recognition of the fundamental freedoms and civil rights of all residents of the land


6. a foreign policy founded on the integration of the interests of the countries of the Middle East and on the similarity of the emerging tendencies in each toward independence: tendencies toward national...revival and against faith-communities, toward the formation of a secular, territorial [consciousness], toward liberation from dependence on foreign powers and forces, toward development, modernization, and redemption of the masses from feudal-colonial manipulation and social oppression

7. integration and accommodation of the efforts of Hebrew liberation with parallel forces of secular national liberation in all the countries of the Middle East, such as those in Turkey, Egypt, and Iran

8. cooperation with all the elements which oppose Pan-Arabism in Lebanon, Syria, the Jordanian kingdom, and Iraq; and providing a unitied expression to the struggle of these emerging forces in Israel and in those countries

9. a federated unity of Israel, Lebanon, and the mountain Druse, a unity that will put an end to the general economic asphyxiation, will remove the continuous military threat, will spur the initiation and organization of other constructive forces of revival in the entire region, and will serve as the nucleus for a general unity

10. the full integration of "minority troops" into the state's armed forces and the development of the unique military-political potential of elements of this type


11. the liberation of the State of Israel from subservience in its domestic and foreign policies to overseas Jewish appeals and freeing the economy and development policy from the orientation of these philanthropies

12. the denial of any official and recognized status to the World Zionist Organization in the State of {srael and the transfer of all its possessions and monetary assets, especially the Jewish National Fund, to a local authority and developmental administration

13. an Israeli policy of absorption and development in accordance with the state's interests alone, [one] based on the productive use of the manpower and capital of the immigrants, with no religious or communal discrimination

14. the fostering of self-sufficiency in basic foodstuffs through directing appropriate manpower into extensive agriculture and applying the full potential of production [capacity], encouragment of assistance programs and agricultural industry, and the establishment of a network of federally sponsored model enterprises

15. the reduction in the cost of living through the abolition of customs duties on imported food staples, raw materials, and machinery essential for production

16. a taxation policy designed to stimulate production, abolition of the income tax as part of a larger effort to spur [the] labor [effort], and full use of productive and export capabilities through the assistance of federal guidance offices


17. the integration of the non-Jewish economy into the framework of the total development and the placing of every professional organization on a nonsectarian basis

18. the development of local and regional governmental agencies and an expansion of their authority along with the apoliticization of the bureaucracies that manage the economy, settlement, agriculture, the cooperative enterprises, and the trade organizations

19. an apolitical bureaucracy for the government, the army, and the police, and the removal of the influence of political parties from the schools and their students

20. the institution of a citizenship law that would make the conferral of citizenship conditional upon permanent residency in the country, knowledge of its language, and observance of its laws, and that would restrict the right to vote in the general elections to citizens of the state alone

21. the obligation for every immigrant to learn at no charge the Hebrew language and the stipulation that every authorization to deal with the public in Israel is conditional upon [attaining] a minimal knowledge of the language


22. a secular-national reform of the educational system in accordance with the principles of territorial self-definition and the Hebrew revival

23. an obligatory secular, nonsectarian public school education within a single framework and content

24. a stimulation of the culture of the homeland based on the national Hebrew revival, drawing on the values intrinsic to this land, and transmitting it to all its inhabitants.

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Table of Contents and Paragraph Index



1 &; 2 &; 3 &; 4 &; 5


6 &; 7 &; 8 &; 9 &; 10


11 &; 12 &; 13 &; 14 &; 15 &; 16


17 &; 18 &; 19 &; 20 &; 21


22 &; 23 &; 24

Further Reading on Hebrew Canaanism

Two Brief Introductions to Hebrew Canaanism by Ron Kuzar

"Canaanism:" Solutions and Problems by Boas Evron

The Vision of the New Hebrew Nation and its Enemies by Yaacov Shavit

This document is discussed directly by Yaacov Shavit in the section of The Vision of the New Hebrew Nation and its Enemies entitled "The Instrument of the Hebrew Revolution: The Redeeming Sword."

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