BA - technically, would an Arab (non-Jordanian/Egyptian) passport holder be allowed into Israel? Obviously this doesn't happen much, but in theory, do Israelis have a reciprocal rule barring Arab passports?
Technically yes, however, if an Arab citizen entering an Arab country is found to have an Israeli stamp, they will be jailed.
This was actually a very big problem during the Israeli occupation of Southern Lebanon.
When Israel was occupying southern Lebanon, Lebanese citizens living in the south had to go down to Tel Aviv whenever they wanted to leave the country and thus, had Israeli stamps in their Lebanese passports.
When Israel finally pulled out in 2000, it took many years for the Lebanese government to clear the many Lebanese citizens who resided in the Israeli occupation zone.
My sister has a friend who had to go through Tel Aviv a few times because she lived in the south in the occupation zone.
They had to go to court in Lebanon and eventually they were "cleared."
The Lebanese government had to do a lot of background checks to make sure that those who cooperated or spied with Israel were prosecuted, while those who didn't and simply traveled into Israeli territory for travel purposes were cleared.
It was a hectic and annoying process, but all Lebanese citizens who were in the occupation zone in the south have now been cleared I believe.
Similarly, what would happen to say, a Lebanese with an Israeli stamp (say the Lebanese guy wanted to go to Palestine). Would Beirut airport still charge him $2000 USD? Would a Lebanese passport holder still encounter trouble from his Israeli stamp?
He would be jailed, unless it is for the situation I described above. If you lived in the occupation zone in the south and thus had to travel through Israel whenever you wanted to leave.
However, say I for example decide to go visit Israel and then later on visit Lebanon and they find an Israeli stamp in my Lebanese passport, I will go to jail.
The $2000USD is only imposed on foreign nationals with Israeli stamps and the $200USD is actually a penalty fee imposed on the airline
for not checking the passports properly, not the passenger. The passenger has to pay for the return ticket and this is of course arranged by the airline.
Interesting that the Israeli's let you in with Arab stamps, but not vica-versa.
I think one of the reasons is they worry about Israeli spies.
Lebanon has jailed a few people with Israeli stamps who were entering Lebanon who were found to have suspicious documents. In the past, Lebanese authorities have caught Israeli spies, most of whom were Arab (Palestinians) who had been hired by the Mossad to do spy work.
However, Israeli spies still come in. They come in with passports of other nationalities and even well-made fake passports.
There was recently an issue about Israeli mossad agents trying to acquire New Zealand passports illegally and New Zealand got furiated and pulled their ambassador from Israel.
"Generosity is giving more than you can, and pride is taking less than you need." - Khalil Gibran