The problem isn’t loyalty, but citizenship

My take on the Ben Zygier/Prisoner X affair is in Crikey today. It appears to not be behind the paywall, so you can go and read it there, but let me know if you have trouble and I might post a couple of extracts here.

Reading it again, the thing that maybe doesn’t come through enough is that loyalty is a personal thing; we all have conflicting loyalties of various sorts, and we learn to manage them. There’s nothing special in that respect about national identity, and certainly nothing special about the Jews.

The problem in this case, and potentially in many others, is the way the state demands a certain sort of loyalty – “allegiance” – of its citizens. My view is that it’s a feudal concept, unsuited for the modern world. But as long as it’s still with us, people who have two different citizenships have a few things to worry about.


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