L'espressione è vista come un mezzo per esprimere l'ostilità nei confronti di Israele, e un rifiuto di riconoscerne l'esistenza o di negare il suo diritto all'esistenza. È stata descritta come un'espressione che riflette dell'odio razziale.
Prima del 1967, il termine era il termine più diffuso tra gli arabi per riferirsi ad Israele, ed era particolarmente popolare in trasmissioni ufficiali di Egitto, Siria e Giordania, tra il 1960 ed il 70.
Il termine è stato utilizzato, tra gli altri, dall'Autorità Nazionale Palestinese, l'Organizzazione per la Liberazione della Palestina, l'Iran, il regime di Saddam Hussein, Hamas e anche "dagli ambasciatori di Siria e Iraq presso il Consiglio di Sicurezza delle Nazioni Unite nei mesi di febbraio e marzo 2003, che hanno preceduto l'invasione dell'Iraq."
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- ^ a b c Jeane Kirkpatrick, Legitimacy and Force: Natural and International Dimensions, Transaction Publishers, 1988, p. 7, ISBN 0-88738-647-4.
- «In this Arab world where faith and politics are linked, traditionalists and radicals, Saudis and Libyans, can unite in hostility against the state of Israel - whose right to exist they deny, whose very existence they refuse to acknowledge, whose name they refuse to utter, calling Israel instead 'the Zionist entity' or 'the deformed Zionist entity'.».
- ^ a b Cohen, Getzel M. (2006). The Hellenistic Settlements in Syria, the Red Sea Basin, and North Africa. University of California Press, 420 (footnote 44). ISBN 0520241487. "Many Arab and Palestinian spokespeople have stopped calling the State of Israel by its name and have reverted to the expression 'the Zionist entity'. This can be understood as a return to questioning the very legitimacy of the existence of the state Israel."
- ^ Karsh, Efraim (2000). Fabricating Israeli History: The "New Historians". Routledge, 11. ISBN 0714650110. "...echoing not only the long-standing Arab castigation of Israel as 'the Zionist entity'..."
- ^ a b Selbourne, David. Losing Battle with Islam, Prometheus Books, 2005, ISBN 9781591023623, p. 202. "...the Israelis have suffered from repeated invasion, subjection to suicide-attacks, and the view that Israel was not a state like others. The various non-state names given to Israel in the Muslim world have been tokens of it. Of these the commonest—used by Iran, the Saddam Hussein regime, by Hamas, by the Lebanese Shi'ite movement, and many others—has been the term 'Zionist entity', or non-state. In 1991, during the Gulf War, the Iraqi army newspaper described Israel — avoiding its very name — as the 'bastard entity of the Zionists', to which it vowed 'complete annihilation'. The same term, 'Zionist entity', was used by both the Syrian and Iraqi ambassadors to the United Nations in the Security Council debates in February and March 2003, which preceded the invasion of Iraq."
- ^ Lassner, Jacob and Troen, S. Ilan. Jews and Muslims in the Arab World: Haunted by Pasts Real and Imagined, Rowman & Littlefield, 2007, 129. ISBN 0742558428. "Does their approach to the Zionist entity, the pejorative euphemism by which they refer to Israel, differ from mainstream Palestinian nationalists..."
- ^ Karsh, Efraim. Arafat's Grand Strategy, Middle East Forum, Volume XI, Number 2, Spring 2004. "This pervasive denigration of Jews has been accompanied by a systematic denial of the Jewish state's legitimacy by both the PA and the PLO. Israel is often referred to by the pejorative phrase, 'the Zionist entity.' Israel is glaringly absent from Palestinian maps, which portray its territory as part of a 'Greater Palestine,' from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean."
- ^ Randal Marlin, Propaganda and the Ethics of Persuasion, Broadview Press, 2002, p. 161, ISBN 1-55111-376-7.
- «Nations can be ignored by not recognizing their existence. Some Arabs would prefer not to speak of 'Israel', but of the 'Zionist entity'.».
- ^ Bengio, Ofra. Saddam's Word: Political Discourse in Iraq, Oxford University Press US, 2002, ISBN 9780195151855, pp. 134-135. "...we find a much greater variety of derogatory terms employed to deny the legitimacy of Israel's existence and to express contempt—mixed with fear—for Zionism... The most frequent way of denying Israel's statehood is al-kiyan al-Sahyuni (the Zionist entity)..."
- ^ Sank, Diane & Caplan, David I. (1991). To Be a Victim: Encounters with Crime and Injustice. Plenum Press, ISBN 030643962X, p. 289. "The very phrase 'Zionist entity' reveals the ultimate intention of those who use it. The State of Israel cannot be dignified by being called by its proper name. To refer to it as 'Israel' is to acknowledge its existence as a legal entity."
- ^ a b Virginia Q. Tilley, The One-state Solution, University of Michigan Press, 2005, p. 198, ISBN 0-472-11513-8.
- «Nevertheless, no special Jewish sensitivity is required to glean racial hatred from Palestinian suicide bombings of Jewish civilians, bombings and defacings of synagogues in Europe, hostile rhetoric about 'the Jews' from such Islamic groups as Hezbollah and Hamas, and decades of Arab-state rhetoric about 'the Jews' and the 'Zionist entity'.».
- ^ Mitchell, Thomas G. Native Vs. Settler: Ethnic Conflict in Israel/Palestine, Northern Ireland, and South Africa, Greenwood Publishing Group, 2000, ISBN 9780313313578, p. 48. "Before 1967 it was standard for Arabs to refer to the "Zionist entity" rather than to Israel by name."
- ^ Amos Oz, Under this Blazing Light, Cambridge University Press, 1996, p. 4, ISBN 0-521-57622-9.
- «...the transmissions of Jordan, Syria, and Egypt. Whenever they referred to Israel, they used the term 'the Zionist entity'. The announcer would say, 'the so-called government of the so-called state', but would stop short of pronouncing the word Israel, as if it were a four letter word.».