Israel Apartheid week is coming to Toronto’s University of Toronto and the campuses of four other Canadian cities as well as two British campuses (guess which?!) and one NYC campus!

Yahoooo!

You know how it goes:

The aim of Israeli Apartheid Week is to raise awareness about Israel as an apartheid state and how apartheid affects the different aspects of Palestinian life. According to the keynote speaker of the week, Palestinian member of the Israeli Knesset (Parliament) Dr. Jamal Zahalka, “Israel is implementing apartheid policies in Palestine by building the apartheid separation wall, bypass roads for Jews only in the West Bank, restrictions on movement of Palestinians, hundreds of checkpoints, in addition to the siege and daily violation of basic human rights of Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza.” He adds, “Even Palestinian citizens of Israel are in fact second degree citizens that suffer systematic discrimination in all aspects of their lives.”

Hmmmm, allow me to quote the quote from the “Filasteen” press release: “the KEYNOTE SPEAKER IS A PALESTINIAN MEMBER OF THE ISRAELI KNESSET.”

Bwahahaahahahahahaha!! Apartheid, my ass.

About the author

themiddle

63 Comments

  • I raised an eyebrow at exactly the same point. That, and the fact that so many of the speakers appear to be Israeli, makes it all seem a bit pointless, really…

  • i’ve never been to israel to see any of these things for myself so i am not sure what to believe… is there any basis to all the rumours of things like only jews are allowed to own land in israel, there are roads that only jews are allowed to use, and non-jews have to have different coloured license plates for there cars?

  • 1) Nobody owns most of the land in Israel except the government. Citizens can lease land for up to 99 years from the government, including Jews, Arabs, Druze and all of Israel’s other ethno-religious groups. Obviously Arabs are allowed to “own” (i.e. lease, like everyone else) land in Israel – dozens of towns and cities in Israel, especially in the north, are majority-Arab. In addition, some of the largest private landowners in Israel are the various Christian churches, who are, as you may be aware, not Jews.

    2) There are roads in the West Bank that only Israeli citizens are allowed to use. They are not Jew-only, they are Israeli-only. This policy was enacted as a result of numerous kidnappings and murders of Israelis along roads in the West Bank.

    3) Israeli citizens, no matter what their religion or ethnicity, have yellow license plates, while Palestinians in the Palestinian territories have green license plates.

  • Differentiated identification papers! Checkpoints at borders! My goodness! It is almost as if Israel is like every other country in the world in controlling its borders. The horror!

    But I think Jessica’s post should be somewhat eye-opening, just for the level of misinformation that exists about the nature of the State of Israel. Most people associate it as a theocratic state, and are shocked to learn that it is a liberal democracy, that most residents are secularized, or that Arabic is an official language, etc…

  • The organizers are their own worst enemies in employing such hysterical rhetoric. The ‘A’ word didn’t work out too well for Jimmy Carter, did it?

    Time to torch that Canadian passport, Middle.

  • Worst of all, perhaps, it truly demeans the experiences of those who actually lived under the oppressive rule of South African apartheid.

  • Out side of the fact that the “A” word is now a bad word again, it is scaring the living daylights out of Jews in North America and Europe. While in Israel, there are those who just say, “Yupper, if we keep going this way…”

    there was something in Ha’aretz a few month back. I don’t feel like looking it up, but it was there.

    And to answer Candy: Palestine is where those folks who believe it to be. Israel exists because the US believes it to be and Israelis have created a state. Palestine exists because Arabs believe it to be and so do many activists and those in Power.

    Palestine should exist as a state next to Israel.

  • But that said, the hypocrisy is soooo good!

    I kinda want to go and ask if he has conversations with the other minorities in other democratic assemblies in the middle east… oh wait never mind!

  • POLJ,

    That there are those in Israel who claim there is apartheid, especially on the Left, is true. That still doesn’t address the fact that 1. there is no apartheid inside the Green Line, and 2. even if you use tortured logic to shout “Apartheid” in the Territory in which Israel still has its people and army, the problem is that you’re doing so to the exclusion of the serious security issues which exist. Whether it’s checkpoints or the security barrier, or even the Israeli/Palestinian-only roads, they’ve all been invented thanks to the security situation.

    Security NOT Apartheid is our new motto.

    However, you bring up an interesting question by suggesting that “Palestine” is wherever folks believe it to be. That is actually false. Palestine is not an imaginary term as used in this context, it refers to a particular place. Most Palestinians refer to “Palestine” as being Israel and the Territories. Some, I would think not too many, think of it as the Territories. Some who have a longer historical perspective may view Jordan as part of “Palestine.” With that being said, there is no such place precisely because the Palestinians have refused to create a state. Israel, unlike “Palestine” exists not because people “believe it to exist” any more than the US is the US because people “believe it to exist.”

    Israel exists because it had received international permission to exist, took the steps necessary to declare itself a state despite having to compromise heavily on its objectives, set itself up as a state, fought a war to ensure that it remained alive and viable, and has since fought more wars to ensure its ongoing existence.

    The Palestinians, by contrast, refused the same offer the Jews accepted, did not compromise or seek to compromise their dreams, did not establish a state, did not establish the infrastructure of a state although they have that today, have never established their state, have fought in wars all of which they launched but have lost them all, and continue to fight instead of compromising. That’s why there is no “Palestine.” For them to receive a Palestine next to Israel, they will actually need to stop their wars and compromise. Until then, I guess they can have lots of “apartheid” conferences where they blame their woes on the evil Israelis even as they continue to buy arms and attempt to harm Israel.

  • Thanks to everyone who left a comment at my site.

    The Palestine/Israel conflict cannot be summarized in a few words, a few “flippant” sentences, even less in hateful rhetoric. It is my custom whenever challenged – as indeed I must (I have no problem with that) – on particular issue regarding that conflict to provide what I believe are thoughtful responses from scholars or activists who have worked in that area or on that particular conflict far longer than I have.

    So here are links to documents that deal with the subject of the “Israeli Apartheid”:

    This Road is for Jews Only – Yes, There is Apartheid in Israel

    Beacon of Hope – Apartheid Israel

    Showdown at The Hague – Israel’s Apartheid Wall on Trial

    Kind regards and wishing peace to everyone!

    P.S. You also might want to view some of the videos that are listed at my site, in the Must Watch section, many featuring young Israelis.

    Cross-posted @ Filasteen

  • FurGaia, I usually don’t bother with Counterpunch because of the gross and wilfull ignorance displayed by those that post there. However, just for you I checked the last article you linked to. I have never read a more moronic ‘article’ before. Hamas, et al are not “domestic terrorists”, they are people who live outside Israel who act with the specified intent of destroying Israel with their main tactic being the murder of innocents. Counterpunch should be renamed to WasteOfBandwidth.

  • FurGaia,

    How about you spend some time worrying about the fact that Palestinians are not allowed citizenship in Lebanon and Kuwait before you spend your time claiming “apartheid” in a country that offers all people full protection under the law, voting rights and civil rights. Maybe have a conversation with Justice Salim Joubran, an Israeli-Arab member of the Supreme Court, and asking him if apartheid exists in Israel. Or better yet, travel to Israel and freely practice any brand of Islam (Shia, Sunni, Sufi, etc…) or any other religion of your choosing with full protection of the law.

    Want to talk apartheid? Here is the definition: “A policy or practice of separating or segregating groups.” Perhaps you should ask yourself whether Jews will ever be allowed to live in a Palestinian state? Or if they are allowed to live in Saudi Arabia?

  • As an aside, in this is something that is rarely discussed…those who “support” the Palestinian cause do nothing but damage the legitimate rights of Palestinians to self-determination. The point is, perhaps if “activists” spent less time throwing rocks at the IDF and calling for the destruction of Israel, that maybe, just maybe, they could spend a little time helping to build an equitable and functioning infrastructure that has been financially pilfered by corrupt Palestinian officials for years and years and years. The moment that irrational, hate-filled, inaccurate and counter-factual claims are made are the moments when Zionists who believe in a two-state solution throw up their hands and give up.

  • Security NOT Apartheid is our new motto.

    themiddle-

    While I agree with you on the Apartheid issues for the most part, perception is reality.

    If people say Israel doesn’t exist, it doesn’t for those people. For those who say Palestine is from Iraq to the MedSea, then it is for those people.

    Mindset is a reality. The UN gave Israel the right to exist. That was the last time the rightwing and center Jewish community thought the UN was a good idea.

    Now to your new slogan. Why are you using the term Apartheid? If you want to combat an issue politically, then don’t ever accept any aspect of the premises of your enemy. Apartheid is not a word to be used to fight the idea of Apartheid. By simply saying “apartheid” you accept it is in the context. Once again we get to the war or ideas which can’t be won.

    Perhaps: Two States. Two People. One Security.

  • FurGaia, thanks for the links but they are far from convincing. I strongly encourage you to stop with the attempt to blur the line between racism and behavior that stems from the effects of 100 years of war, ongoing incitement and ongoing attacks. There is a difference and it is profound. Every time you ignore the security concerns of Israel and every time you ignore its right to exist as a Jewish state – just as you wish to define “Palestine” as a Palestinian state, you harm your cause. First of all, you harm it because your claims are untrue. Simply put, you are bringing out a non-Jewish Arab politician (whom you call Palestinian) member of Knesset to speak to your group. This alone makes your premise a falsehood. However, second, you also lead to the perpetuation of the conflict. Contrary to your belief that Israel should simply be Palestine, you cannot will it away. It exists and will continue to exist. It is also becoming better established and more entrenched. As an example, over 65% of Israeli Jews are now native to Israel despite decades of immigration of Jews from around the world. By contrast, only about 5% of the Palestinians (outside of Israel, since unlike you we call Arabs in Israel Israeli-Arabs) can claim that Mandatory or pre-mandatory Palestine was their birthplace. The fact is that compromise was the right solution in 1947, 1937 and 2000 and remains so now. People who actually care about the fate of the Palestinian people would do well to focus on compromise and a two state solution instead of continuing to incite and attempt to deligitimize Israel.

    POLJ, I was kidding about the slogan, I have no interest in promoting the false issue of apartheid. However, I will say that it’s time we took the fight to these people by using the very same tools they use. They can have these events all over campus? Well, perhaps instead of having pro-Israel events, supporters of Israel should begin to hold anti-Arab policies events. Surely there are egregious issues going on in Arab states and there is no reason that we should not speak out against them instead of constantly justifying ourselves.

  • Point is, under the South African apartheid system, there were no Black members of the South African parliament. That is what Middle means by hypocrisy.

  • Xisnotx, I happen to agree with most of that editorial. However, even the vaunted Ha’aretz can be wrong. They can be very wrong sometimes: Aluf Benn, Amira Hass, Yoel Marcus, Gideon Levy et al often have views that are rejected by most Israelis and others who observe the situation in Israel.

    Even so, in this editorial, they are focusing on the territories, which these folks with the Apartheid Week events are not. Second, they are speaking about “apartheid” in a context that is absolutely incongruous with the racist ideology of apartheid. The Arab-Israeli conflict is a long and ongoing war. The Palestinians and Israelis are in a war over land, over faith, and over culture. This is a 100 year old war and the Israelis have taken measures to protect themselves. Those who call this “apartheid” should be far more concerned about the reasons for Israel’s security measures, namely, the strategic decision made by the Palestinians over the course of decades to focus their war efforts against Israeli civilians.

    I happen to disagree with the settlement movement and believe that many settlements have transgressed Israeli law with the tacit agreement of the Israeli government. However, that is not apartheid and it is also not apartheid when Israel takes steps to protect both these citizens or those who live inside the Green line. It’s not as if Palestinians’ livelihoods have been affected by racism. They have been affected because every time Israel opened a crossing to allow Palestinian workers into Israel where they earned a per capita income higher than virtually all other Arabs in the Middle East (this was true until the mid to late ’90s anyway, although ongoing terror attacks brought this number down over time), Palestinian terrorists would attempt or succeed in coming into Israel. The same goes for roadblocks and eventually the separate roads. Take a look at the stats. In 2002, prior to Israel re-entering Areas A and while the roads were becoming separate, there were thousands of sniper and rock attacks predominantly upon Israeli civilians. The stats now, even with the state of belligerence against Israel as strong as ever, has diminished to a very small number. This is not apartheid, this is basic security.

  • It is comforting to know that jews in the diaspora are involved in defending Israel,
    while the foreign ministry is criminally neglective…

  • security, or an apartheid-like system under the guise of security?

    This is former Israeli Attorney General Michael Ben Yair, writing in Ha’aretz, March 3rd, 2002.

    “The Six-Day War was forced upon us; however, the war’s seventh day, which began on June 12, 1967 and has continued to this day, is the product of our choice. We enthusiastically chose to become a colonial society, ignoring international treaties, expropriating lands, transferring settlers from Israel to the occupied territories, engaging in theft and finding justification for all these activities. Passionately desiring to keep the occupied territories, we developed two judicial systems: one – progressive, liberal – in Israel; and the other – cruel, injurious – in the occupied territories. In effect, we established an apartheid regime in the occupied territories immediately following their capture.

    “That oppressive regime exists to this day.”

  • themiddle-

    You plan that meeting and see what would happen. I will come and we can talk about the treatment of Jews in Arab countries. I did that during my time at university, and you know what? No one showed up.

    Jews tend to play by different rules.

  • There should never be a Palestinian country because there has never been a such a country or Palestinian people (until several decades ago). Israel and America actually exist like the apartheid that exists in Arab countries like Saudi Aabia. Where’s your anger at them?

  • Jews do tend to play by different rules which are civilized unlike the Arabs who don’t the definition of the word.

  • Xisnotx, I know the Left loves quoting Ben Yair, but it still doesn’t change the fact that this is about security.

    No terror attacks? No roadblocks, check points, targeted killings, separate roads or security barrier. The very same issues raised by the camp shouting racism are clearly a result of violence directed at Israelis and predominantly Israeli civilians.

    Having said that, if I were running things, I’d prefer Israel leave the Palestinians to themselves: evacuate the Jewish civilian population of the West Bank right back West of the security barrier, seal the barrier, let the IDF continue to prevent the Lebanonization of Judea and Samaria by maintaining a presence there, and then waiting until the day a generation of Palestinians comes along that recognizes Israel and is willing to compromise over land. They can settle on something along the lines of the offers made by Barak at Taba and Camp David and live happily ever after.

    I’m not running things and it’s still not apartheid.

  • Tal, everybody in Israel in a position of power is too busy playing politics in their career to take care of speaking up for Israel, or to take care of much else for that matter.

  • you’re right, TM, what does a former Israeli attorney general know? let’s dismiss what he says, because the left loves to quote him — oh yeah, and it was in Ha’aretz, where all those other untrustworthy sources write. what ben-yair has to say certainly has no weight when confronted with your incontrovertable “facts.”

  • Right Xinotx, have you interviewed the current attorney general, or the one preceding him, or the prior one? Do they support Ben Yair’s position? No.

    Have you checked Ma’ariv’s editorials, Yediot’s or Jerusalem Post’s recently? Do they agree with the apartheid charge in that Ha’aretz editorial? No. Do writers for Ha’aretz such as Burston or Rosner agree? No. So why are you focused on that particular editorial?

    Your method of debate has consistently been to provide some op-eds from people who support your clear enmity to Israel and its policies. Wonderful. Well, here are some facts: an Israeli Arab Knesset member is traveling to Montreal to give a talk against Israel in an openly and libelous anti-Israel forum. He will return to Israel unmolested, unarrested, and proceed to sit in on the next Knesset session and collect his Israeli-government paycheck on time.

    He might decide to go in and deride the current Arab minister who sits in Olmert’s Cabinet for being an Uncle Tom, or perhaps the Arab Supreme Court justice for selling out to The Man. Not enough? He might then go to Syria and encourage Hizbullah to attack Israel and send a message to the Palestinians to continue with their violent “struggle” against Israel. He will, of course, bring up that they should never ever ever accept the offer of a state provided by Israel in 2000 in exchange for a lasting peace. And then he’ll come back and eat hummus with the other dozen or so Arab Knesset members.

    Right? After all, apartheid nations like to give the minorities they oppress a state that might be a source of endangerment and that might link up to other states with a majority population of their brethern (West Bank to Jordan for those who felt this was too oblique). Apartheid states enjoy closing themselves off in a little prison with only the sea as their way out. Yup, apartheid states have robust courts, movements and dialogue that ensure the equality in the eyes of the law, media and international community of every little action the state or its people take. Apartheid states enjoy having members of parliament from these minorities who exhort their followers to civil disobedience and destruction of the very state for which they work instead of using the system to better the lives of their voters.

    I had friends (lost over time to distance, I’m afraid) who had family members arrested in South Africa for speaking out or actively working to defeat apartheid. I’m not talking about ones who supported terror or violence, I’m speaking about ones who sought to speak out against the injustice and horror of apartheid. Does that sound like Israel to you, xisnotx? You wouldn’t be quoting Ha’aretz if it were.

    You’re no different than our friend above from Filasteen who can only provide links from Counterpunch to make his case. Open your eyes and see that there are plenty of other perspectives than whatever Noam Chomsky dribbled forth yesterday. At the end of the day, what exists in Israel is a Jewish majority that founded a Jewish state seeking to find a balance between its identity and the rights of its citizens; between its security needs and the rights of those minorities who have to live under the state’s military control – through their own fault I might add. It is far from perfect and quite a challenging situation. However, it is also war and security driven and has nothing to do with apartheid.

  • Just in case you’re actually interested, TM, the first link Furgaia provided above (did you actually read it?) is to an article that originally ran in Yediot Aharonot, then translated before it ran in Counterpunch — and in that execreble and untrustworthy rag, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution:

    http://www.ajc.com/opinion/content/opinion/stories/2007/01/24/0124edisrael.html

    it’s by former MK and cabinet minister Shulamit Aloni, who fought in the war of independence. I know, I know, she’s a leftist, so let’s just ignore what she says:

    “On one occasion I witnessed such an encounter between a driver and a soldier who was taking down the details before confiscating the vehicle and sending its owner away. “Why?” I asked the soldier. “It’s an order–this is a Jews-only road”, he replied. I inquired as to where was the sign indicating this fact and instructing [other] drivers not to use it. His answer was nothing short of amazing. “It is his responsibility to know it, and besides, what do you want us to do, put up a sign here and let some antisemitic reporter or journalist take a photo so he that can show the world that Apartheid exists here?”

    Since you invoke S. Africa, let’s see what the Intelligence Minister, Ronnie Kasrils, (who is Jewish, not that matters) and the former head of the ANC’s armed wing has to say:

    http://www.safecom.org.au/israel-apart.htm
    “Apartheid was an extension of the colonial project to dispossess people of their land,” said the Jewish South African cabinet minister and former ANC guerrilla, Ronnie Kasrils, on a visit to Jerusalem. “That is exactly what has happened in Israel and the occupied territories; the use of force and the law to take the land. That is what apartheid and Israel have in common.”

    I know — someone with Kasrils’ background clearly has nothing to offer, he’s just mouthing Chomskyite drivel.

  • Oh xisnotx – So because Shulamit Aloni and a random unnamed soldier claim Israel is an Apartheid state, then it must be true. Kasril goes on a little visit to Jerusalem and now that makes him an expert – allowing him to spout standard un-nuanced phrases straight out of radical chic 1970s era textbook propaganda, with quite an impressive measure of authority!

    Why don’t you address the substance of TM’s critiques of your position? Didn’t the UN overturn their Zionism is Racism resolution? Did South Africa have black parliamentarians? Is the Apartheid comparison valid or is it just a simplistic red herring used by Israel’s detractors? Are you really that narrow minded??

    And for the record, I am definitely on the left of the political spectrum. Spare me your smug self righteousness and debate these issues in a substantive manner.

  • Okay, xisnotx, you wanna play your way instead of addressing my comments above? I’m sorry to say that this is typical of your debating style, but I know how to play your way as well:

    S. African Minister: Israel is Not Apartheid – Yossi Melman

    South Africa’s minister for home affairs, Chief Mangosuthu Buthelezi, rejects calling the Israeli treatment of Palestinians “apartheid.” “The Israeli regime is not apartheid. It is a unique case of democracy,” he said in an interview Monday. If the Palestinians asked him, he would advise them to avoid violence and to prefer negotiations. (Ha’aretz)

    You think he knows something that a white man like Kasrils doesn’t? I know, I know, a black man and Zulu leader quoted in Ha’aretz of all places, must know less about the reality of apartheid than the white, former filmmaker, Jewish Kasrils.

    But wait!

    You want a Jewish, white South African who was an apartheid opponent to speak out as well? Okay!

    Here is Benjamin Pogrund:

    Nearly three years ago I underwent an operation in a Jerusalem hospital. The surgeon was Jewish, the anaesthetist was Arab. The doctors and nurses who looked after me were Jews and Arabs. I lay in bed for a month and watched as they gave the same skilled care to other patients – half of whom were Arabs and half of whom were Jewish – all sharing the same wards, operating theatres and bathrooms.

    After that experience I have difficulty understanding anyone who equates Israel with apartheid South Africa. What I saw in the Hadassah Mt Scopus hospital was inconceivable in the South Africa where I spent most of my life, growing up and then working as a journalist who specialised in exposing apartheid. It didn’t happen and it couldn’t happen. Blacks and whites were strictly separated and blacks got the least and the worst. And this is only one slice of life. Buses, post offices, park benches, cinemas, everything, were segregated by law. No equation is possible.

    He also says:

    Apartheid is dead in South Africa but the word is alive in the world, especially as an epithet of abuse for Israel. Israel is accused by some of being “the new apartheid” state. If true, it would be a grave charge, justifying international condemnation and sanctions. But it isn’t true. Anyone who knows what apartheid was, and who knows Israel today, is aware of that. Use of the apartheid label is at best ignorant and naïve and at worst cynical and manipulative.

    I could continue, but surely by now you’re convinced since I’ve quoted two individuals who know better than Shulamit Aloni and at least one of whom knows better than Kasrils what is apartheid.

  • IMHO, the apartheid analogy is useful because there’s de facto two systems for two peoples between the river and the sea, favoring one group over another. Palestinians in the territories don’t have a vote in the system which determines vital aspects of their lives. The court system, which TM argues is “robust”, has sanctioned the colonization of the territories; as Kasrils points out, that’s similar to apartheid in separating native inhabitants from their lands. Inside the Green Line, the HCJ struck down the government’s policy of directing funds to “National priorty areas” as being racist:

    http://www.williambowles.info/isrl-pal/2006/0306/israel_land_grab.html
    The status has been used to award the communities substantial economic benefits since it was first established nearly a decade ago. Such a result “is contaminated by one of the most suspect distinctions, which is distinction based on race and nationality,” wrote Supreme Court chief Aharon Barak. “This is a result that Israeli democracy cannot tolerate.”

    Yet in the WB, policies favoring Jews over Palestinians are not racist and discriminatory? When Palestinians’ lands get cut off by the barrier, and they go to Israeli courts to seek redress, they’re doing so in the court system of a country in which they cannot vote.

    According to this report from B’Tselem and BIMKOM, the route of the barrier is being used for settlement expansion, w/security concerns as a pretext:

    http://www.btselem.org/english/Publications/Summaries/200512_Under_the_Guise_of_Security.asp

    as for TM’s point “Apartheid states enjoy closing themselves off in a little prison with only the sea as their way out.”

    The barrier does not affect Israel’s “way out.” Highways that run thru the barrier connect Israel to Jordan. Palestinians are the ones who are being enclosed in little prisons:

    http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?cid=1167467790412&pagename=JPost%2FJPArticle%2FShowFull
    Some 250,000 Palestinians will be trapped in enclaves either on the “Israeli” side of the security barrier or almost completely surrounded by concrete walls or fences inside the West Bank, according to a study released Monday by the human rights organization Bimkom.

    In aparthied S. Africa, such enclaves were called Bantustans. Sharon considered Bantustans a model for the territories, according to Akiva Eldar: http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/pages/ShArt.jhtml?itemNo=292536

    Former Shin Bet head Ami Ayalon, in 2000:

    http://www.dispatch.co.za/2000/12/05/foreign/IISRAEL.HTM
    “Israel must decide quickly what sort of environment it wants to live in because the current model, which has some apartheid characteristics, is not compatible with Jewish principles,” Ami Ayalon said.

    I’m sure you remember the interview w/four former Shabak heads in 2003:

    http://www.zeek.net/feature_0312.shtml
    “The result,” says Shalom, “is that the fence achieves the exact opposite of what was intended. Instead of creating a reality of separation and maintaining a window of opportunity for ‘two states for two peoples,’ a situation has been created where this window of opportunity is gradually closing. The Palestinians are arguing: You wanted two states, and instead you are closing us up in a South African reality. Therefore, the more we support the fence, they lose their dream and hope for an independent Palestinian state.”

  • So, in other words, the security situation that prevents Palestinians from having their own state also creates situations where they are unable to conduct themselves like Israeli citizens? Correct. They are not citizens and they live under a weird combination of their own government, the PA and Israel’s control over aspects of their lives. To remind you, this was not so in 2002 but became so because of…the security situation. The Palestinians attacked Israeli civilians so efficiently and ruthlessly that Israel had no choice but to resend their troops into those areas that had been exclusively under PA control.

    That isn’t apartheid.

    Since then, the Palestinians have been tremendously effective at keeping the war going, sending out 1500 Qassem rockets from Gaza, for example, even after the Israelis evacuated the territory. By keeping the war going, and then by electing a government sworn to Israel’s destruction, the Palestinians have also been in breach of previous agreements and have prevented any negotiations over resolution of these issues. This became so bad that the Israeli public voted into office a government promising them unilateral separation from the Palestinians.

    Of course, the unilateral separation could not take place considering the war from Lebanon and the attacks from Gaza. Security dominates again, even though the Palestinian public suffers – though they suffer and then continue to support the very leaders who got them into this mess in the first place.

    Without diplomatic options – despite previous offers by the Israelis that were not reciprocated – and with ongoing security challenges, the Israelis have no choice but to impose the very issues that so disturb you and cause you to bring us the word “apartheid.” In fact, however, as you noted, the Palestinians have recourse to Israel’s high court, they have a Palestinian Authority which serves as a government, they have managed to change the course of the security barrier through the use of the Israeli judicial system to minimize harm to their villages and livelihood whenever they can show that security is not a factor, and they always have the opportunity to ask their leaders to negotiate for peace.

    As for the issue of “bantustans,” I’m afraid that the security barrier actually prevents them. It will, if Kadima’s plan is ever implemented – and if it isn’t you can blame that on Hizbullah, Assad, Hamas and the Qassem launching idiots in Gaza – bring out and ethnically cleanse all of the Jews living east of the fence and move them west of the fence. The Palestinians will continue to live on both sides but the vast majority will live east of the fence with a direct link to Jordan which is over 60% Palestinian in its population makeup. There are no plans for dissecting roads, although it is now clear that Israel will have to maintain some sort of military presence – something that wasn’t the case before Hizbullah and Hamas kidnapped soldiers and maintained wars with the IDF. Barak’s Taba plan also did not have any bisecting roads. And just to remind you, Barak offered the Palestinians a state. A state with resources, with a connection between its two key parts, and with open links to its neighboring Arab countries. The Palestinians didn’t change their demands that would destroy Israel as a Jewish state at all. And they were already at war with Israel. Apartheid?

    Again, I repeat, stop using the false claim of “apartheid” where it does not exist. Apartheid was a racist system and what is happening here is a war where both sides are taking steps to fight but one has the upper hand. That isn’t apartheid, and you would do well to read the second link by Pogrund.

  • I’m familiar w/Pogrund’s piece. Here’s a rejoinder to Pogrund from Angela Godfrey, another Israeli South African, who also opposed apartheid:

    http://tania.blythe-systems.com/pipermail/nytr/Week-of-Mon-20060213/032374.html

    “Benjamin Pogrund, a friend whom I respect, takes comfort in knowing that
    hospital care in Israel is – unlike the hospitals of South Africa – not
    racist. Go tell it to residents of Abu Dis, 60,000 people who no longer have
    a hospital at all because the Wall has cut them out of Jerusalem and
    literally split families. Go tell it to scores of women who lost babies at
    checkpoints. Go tell it to volunteers of Physicians for Human Rights, who
    refuse to be enemies and go to the Occupied Territories every Saturday, to
    confirm their Hippocratic Oath. Go tell it to my late father, a white doctor
    in black hospitals in Durban and East London in S. Africa during apartheid
    days (“It didn’t happen and it couldn’t happen”? Oh yes it did!).”

    Tony Karon, an editor at Time Magazine, is, like Pogrund, a Jewish South African journalist who worked against apartheid there:

    http://tonykaron.com/2006/12/22/israel-and-apartheid-in-defense-of-jimmy-carter/

    “But the comparison with the essence of apartheid remains valid — in South Africa, black people lived under the control of a state over which they had no control even as they participated in a shared economy, on the West Bank and Gaza Palestinians live under a state over which they have no control which seeks to keep them out of a shared economy. But in both cases, they found themselves ruled by a state that denied them the rights of a sovereign people. Even now, after it has ostensibly withdrawn from Gaza, Israel still tightly controls Palestinian life there, determining whether the lights work and whether salaries are paid, who may enter and who may leave, and much of the time who will live and who will die. Sure, the Palestinians have an elected government (which the Israelis together with the U.S. are doing their best to subvert), but it isn’t allowed to govern — post-pullout Gaza, in fact, looks rather a lot like what the apartheid regime had in mind in its original Bantustan policy: A separate geographic state within which Africans could “exercise their political rights” while still remaining under effective sovereign control of the Pretoria regime. In the West Bank, Israel is the effective political authority, and there it creates restrictions on the movement of Palestinians every bit as odious — if not even more so — than those imposed on black people under apartheid. That’s because on the West Bank, Israel is not only maintaining overall sovereign control, as in Gaza, but is also trying to “cleanse” of Palestinians vast swathes of the best land illegally settled since 1967, and the networks of roads that connect them.”
    —-

    Also, Pogrund says: “White South Africans invented the Bantustans to pen blacks into defined areas that served as reservoirs of labour; blacks were allowed to leave only when needed to work in white South Africa’s factories, farms, offices and homes. The Israeli aim is the exact opposite: it is to keep Palestinians out, having as little to do with them as possible, and letting in as few as possible to work.”

    He’s ignoring that Israel wants to set up industrial zones in the “seam zone”, the minimum 8% of the West Bank between the barrier and the Green Line, in which Palestinians will work for Israeli companies on what used to be their lands. Meron Rapaport wrote about this in Le Monde Diplomatique: http://mondediplo.com/2004/06/05thewall

    “Israel’s plan of attack is to close off the Gaza Strip before withdrawing to concentrate on expansionist policies in the West Bank. Ariel Sharon hopes this will annihilate the Palestinians politically, condemning them to work for poverty wages in industrial estates along the security wall.”

    You say: “As for the issue of “bantustans,” I’m afraid that the security barrier actually prevents them. ”

    What do you understand a Bantustan to be? here’s wikipedia:

    “The term was first used in the late 1940s, and was coined from ‘Bantu’ (meaning ‘people’ in the Bantu languages) and ‘-stan’ (meaning ‘land of’ in the Persian language, equivalent to the Latin ending -ia and the Germanic -land). It was regarded as a disparaging term by some critics of the apartheid-era government’s ‘homelands’ (from Afrikaans tuisland). The word ‘bantustan’, today, is often used in a pejorative sense when describing a country or region that lacks any real legitimacy or power, and that sometimes emerges from national or international gerrymandering.”

    As the BIMKOM report states, 250,000 Palestinians will be surrounded in enclaves by the barrier. How are those different from Bantustans?

    “there are no plans for dissecting roads,”

    Again, BIMKOM:

    “The internal enclaves are on the West Bank side of the barrier. However, the barrier curves around them to protect Jewish settlements or roads and in doing so, all but cuts them off from the rest of the Palestinian territory. One example is the Bir Naballa enclave north of Jerusalem, which is completely surrounded by concrete walls or fences.

    “The only access to the rest of the West Bank is via a limited number of underpasses beneath the fence.”

    You say:

    “Without diplomatic options – despite previous offers by the Israelis that were not reciprocated – and with ongoing security challenges, the Israelis have no choice but to impose the very issues that so disturb you and cause you to bring us the word “apartheid.””

    No choice? this is from the New York Times today:

    http://www.kibush.co.il/show_file.asp?num=19264
    “This amounts to a vigorous case for immobility. Behind it, of course, lies a strategic calculation. In Israel, policy is often war by other means. Put bluntly, the calculation is that there is no existential threat to Israel from the Palestinians. And so Israel can lay down the terms of its coexistence with, or domination of, its neighbors.

    “`Since 2000, there has been no real interest on the Israeli side in settling with anyone,` said Fred Lazin, a professor of politics at Ben Gurion University of the Negev. `Iran and perhaps Syria are seen as serious threats, but not the Palestinians.`”

    RE: Buthelezi, you’ll see further on in Melmen’s article it notes:

    “Buthelezi, a Zulu prince, abandoned the movement and in 1975 founded the Inkhata Freedom Party which he presides over to this day. ANC leaders accused him of splitting the black consensus in South Africa and tried to persuade him to rejoin them and support the use of political violence, but he remained firm. Later they branded him as a traitor and collaborator with apartheid.”

    Also,
    http://www.blacksandjews.com/Brenner.on.Foxman.html
    “For propagandistic reasons, Israel had to make it look like it was against apartheid and supported responsible opposition to it.
    So it openly patronized Mangosuthu Gatsha Buthelezi, head of the Inkatha Freedom Party and its death squads. When he toured here in 1992, Israel got the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations to host him at their New York office.. They knew that, according to the June 12, 1992 DNB, “many observers….say the violence among blacks reflects collusion
    between the South African security forces and Inkatha aimed at disabling the ANC.” Yet, according to Kenneth Jacobson, the ADL’s director of international affairs, there was “nothing for us to feel guilty about. He’s a man with a point of view, and that should be heard.” The Mr. Nice Guy of South African politics declared himself a free-market freedom-fightin’ kind of fella and “not friend of Gadhafi or Yasir Arafat. All these are friends of the ANC.” [52]

    Buthelezi told Jacobsen he was “not a friend of Arafat”. Yet in the Melman article, he claimed that “He says he knows Yasser Arafat well and if he were on an official visit he would be keen to meet him.”

    A more credible Black South African authority is Archbishop Desmond Tutu:

    http://www.thenation.com/doc/20020715/tutu

    “Yesterday’s South African township dwellers can tell you about today’s life in the occupied territories. To travel only blocks in his own homeland, a grandfather waits on the whim of a teenage soldier. More than an emergency is needed to get to a hospital; less than a crime earns a trip to jail. The lucky ones have a permit to leave their squalor to work in Israel’s cities, but their luck runs out when security closes all checkpoints, paralyzing an entire people. The indignities, dependence and anger are all too familiar.

    “Many South Africans are beginning to recognize the parallels to what we went through. Ronnie Kasrils and Max Ozinsky, two Jewish heroes of the antiapartheid struggle, recently published a letter titled “Not in My Name.” Signed by several hundred other prominent Jewish South Africans, the letter drew an explicit analogy between apartheid and current Israeli policies. Mark Mathabane and Nelson Mandela have also pointed out the relevance of the South African experience.”

    And despite your claims about the courts and the barrier route, changes have been minimal, according to B’tselem:

    http://www.btselem.org/english/separation_barrier/20060709_Hague_2nd_anniversary.asp
    On 30 April 2006,

    ” the government of Israel approved a revised route that was supposed to reduce the harm to the Palestinians’ fabric of life. However, the changes have a marginal overall effect.”

    Lastly, read South African law professor and UN Special Rapporteur John Dugard’s AJC article, “Israelis adopt what South Africa dropped:”

    http://www.ajc.com/search/content/opinion/stories/2006/11/29/1129edcarter.html
    “Restrictions on freedom of movement imposed by a rigid permit system enforced by some 520 checkpoints and roadblocks resemble, but in severity go well beyond, apartheid`s `pass system.` And the security apparatus is reminiscent of that of apartheid, with more than 10,000 Palestinians in Israeli prisons and frequent allegations of torture and cruel treatment.

    “Many aspects of Israel`s occupation surpass those of the apartheid regime. Israel`s large-scale destruction of Palestinian homes, leveling of agricultural lands, military incursions and targeted assassinations of Palestinians far exceed any similar practices in apartheid South Africa. No wall was ever built to separate blacks and whites.

    “Following the worldwide anti-apartheid movement, one might expect a similarly concerted international effort united in opposition to Israel`s abhorrent treatment of the Palestinians. Instead one finds an international community divided between the West and the rest of the world. The Security Council is prevented from taking action because of the U.S. veto and European Union abstinence. And the United States and the European Union, acting in collusion with the United Nations and the Russian Federation, have in effect imposed economic sanctions on the Palestinian people for having, by democratic means, elected a government deemed unacceptable to Israel and the West. Forgotten is the commitment to putting an end to occupation, colonization and apartheid. “

  • “I’m sorry to say that this is typical of your debating style, but I know how to play your way as well:”

    I was hoping you would do that, TM, and you didn’t disappoint. Good job. However, I doubt it even goes into one ear, let alone being processed on the way to the other.

  • “IMHO, the apartheid analogy is useful because there’s de facto two systems for two peoples between the river and the sea, favoring one group over another. ” Well, actually xisnotx, it’s “useful” to you in your effort to seize the moral highground and prove your superior moral worth– at least to yourself.

    Don’t you see how enervating this sort of debate is– from YOUR point of view? Instead of doing something practical to help the Palestinians, you prefer a semantic exercise with no benefit, apart, perhaps, from making you feel good about your own nobility.

    On Israel-Palestine, as on so many issues, the hard Left prefers a ghetto of choir-preaching and self-aggrandizement to the vexing, nuanced world of genuine politics.

  • You know, I can’t get into Canada without having to go through a checkpoint and present proper documentation. Down with Canadian apartheid!

  • I cant understand why arguing that the apartheid analogy is useful in terms of this situation is an effort to seize the moral highground on my part. Roger Cohen did the same thing in the New York Times on Feb 7. — was that also an effort to seize the moral highground?

    http://www.miftah.org/display.cfm?DocId=12652&CategoryId=5

    “That said, Carter is not wrong to see analogies with aspects of apartheid. Anyone visiting the West Bank, with its garrison-like Jewish settlements on hilltops connected by modern highways barred or inaccessible to donkey-riding Palestinians, can only be struck by how humiliation is now built into the very terrain.

    “The West Bank has been fragmented into three areas – north (Jenin and Nablus), center (Ramallah) and south (Hebron) – which increasingly resemble the Bantustans of South Africa,” John Dugard, a South African law professor who has examined conditions there for the United Nations Human Rights Council, wrote recently.”

  • Oh crap, I just wrote a very lengthy response and the automatic updating of the site erased it.

    It doesn’t matter. Basically I took every one of your examples and showed its bias or how it is security related.

    At the end of the day, a non-Jewish Arab Knesset member refutes everything you’ve pointed out so effectively that you’ve stopped talking about Israel and are focusing on the territory still in its hands and kind of touching on the territory no longer in its hands because you have no choice. The Palestinians have leaders, have a government, have the ability to negotiate for peace with many of the outlines for compromise already in place. And you know what? The barrier, the checkpoints, the miserable absence of freedom of movement, etc. will be resolved very soon after the Palestinians accept compromise and peace. It’s that simple.

    You should stop standing in their way.

  • When I fly to the US I have to go through a US checkpoint IN CANADA and provide unique identification to be allowed into the US. Down with American occupation and apartheid!

  • I dont talk about Israeel because I have no choice — it’s because the apartheid-like system is in the territories, I’ve said so all along.

    so who were you gonna refute — B’tselem and BIMKOM: http://www.btselem.org/english/Press_Releases/20050915.asp
    The report shows that not only were security-related reasons of secondary importance in certain locations, in cases when they conflicted with settlement expansion, the planners opted for expansion, even at the expense of compromised security.

    well? can you prove why that’s not true?

    you say:
    “The barrier, the checkpoints, the miserable absence of freedom of movement, etc. will be resolved very soon after the Palestinians accept compromise and peace.

    now, who should I believe, you or today’s New York Times, which says Israel’s the stumbling block, quoting an Israeli professor:

    http://select.nytimes.com/iht/2007/02/14/world/IHT-14globalist.html
    “This amounts to a vigorous case for immobility. Behind it, of course, lies a strategic calculation. In Israel, policy is often war by other means. Put bluntly, the calculation is that there is no existential threat to Israel from the Palestinians. And so Israel can lay down the terms of its coexistence with, or domination of, its neighbors.

    `Since 2000, there has been no real interest on the Israeli side in settling with anyone,` said Fred Lazin, a professor of politics at Ben Gurion University of the Negev. `Iran and perhaps Syria are seen as serious threats, but not the Palestinians.`

    “You should stop standing in their way.”
    it’s those that deny reality that are standing in their way.

  • Uh oh Lisa…I can see the Canadian terrorists skating towards the borders already! Only they are armed with good manners and Tim Horton’s.

  • xisnotx, you are selective in your quoting. Cohen also said this in the article you quote in #43:

    Carter has defended his choice of words, saying it’s meant to convey the forced separation and domination of Palestinians rather than Israeli racism. He has insisted that using “apartheid” to describe Israeli West Bank policies “should give no aid or comfort to any of those who have attempted to equate racism with Zionism.”

    Nice try, Jimmy. Trying to take race out of the word “apartheid” is as far- fetched as trying to take Jew out of the word “Zionism.” It doesn’t work.

    And in the same article he forgives Carter easily for lies, obfuscations and omissions that have come up in his book and public talks and talks about Carter’s supposed bravery, but the fact is that Carter wrote an entire book and essentially referred to apartheid only in the title and a couple of places inside of it. He then used his high profile to go on TV and indicate that behind-the-scenes manipulation prevents Americans from seeing the true face of the situation in this conflict, even as he himself was asked to do dozens of talk shows and even though as I’ve shown you in a previous conversation, there is far more coverage of Palestinians than of Israelis in the US media.

    I don’t have access to TimesSelect and cannot read the other Cohen article.
    —————–

    That woman Tania Blythe actually uses the term original sin when referring to Israel’s creation. Forgive me if I peg her as a loony far-Lefty but that’s what she is. Anyway, she complains about lack of access to a hospital and compares this to the SA apartheid regime. Just for you, I looked up the following data (easier to read at the link):

    EDUCATION

    On June 6, 1967, there were 987 educational institutions (6,148 classes) in the areas, and not a single university or institution of higher learning, apart from a number of small teacher training colleges on the West Bank. Today, there are over 1,730 educational institutions (15,575 classes). Under the auspices of the Civil Adminstration, five universities and several other institutions of higher learning have been established. A partial list includes:

    Year
    Institution opened Type of studies

    Islamic University 1971 Religious studies,
    of Hebron sciences, and humanities.

    Bir Zeit University 1972 Humanities, economics,
    sciences, and engineering.

    Bethlehem University 1973 Sciences, the humanities,
    business adminstration,
    nursing, etc.

    An Najah University 1977 Humanities, sciences.
    (Nablus)

    Al-Ahzar University 1978 Religious studies,
    (Gaza) humanities, education,
    economics, etc.

    Beit Hanina 1978 Religious studies, Arabic
    Religious College language.

    Hebron Polytechnic 1978 Civil engineering,
    Institute construction, electrical
    mechanics.

    Shari’a Institute 1978 Religious studies
    (Kalkilya)

    Al-Bireh Nursing 1979 Nursing, public health,
    College laboratory technicians.

    Abu Dis College of 1981 Sciences, mathematics,
    Science applied technology.

    Years of schooling – Gaza (percent)

    0 1-6 7-8 9-12 13+
    M F M F M F M F M F

    1970 34.2 65.3 24.6 10.3 9.1 5.6 31.5 18.4 0.6 0.4
    1991 11.4 28 21.4 17.8 7 7.9 48.2 41.1 12 5.2

    Years of schooling – Judea-Samaria (percent)

    1970 27.8 65.1 34.8 18.9 14.7 6.7 21.3 8.8 1.4 0.5
    1991 11.4 30.8 21.9 22.6 14.3 11.5 40.5 28.5 11.9 6.6

    In addition, there are today 26 government-sponsored vocational training centers, which did not exist before June 1967, graduating approximately 4,500 trainees a year.

    II. HEALTH AND SANITATION

    1970 1990

    Judea/Samaria

    General clinics 105 168

    Mother and Child
    Health Centers 25 141

    Village Health Rooms 0 49

    High Risk
    Pregnancy Clinics 0 7

    Specialized Clinics NA (1975 – 7) 13

    Mobile Clinics 0 2

    Gaza Strip

    Community Clinics 3 28

    Each of the Community Clinics in the Gaza Strip offers mother and child health services, family care units, and pharmacies. Several of the centers offer 24-hour a day delivery units and emergency services, and minor x-ray units.

    Major renovations and/or additions have been made to almost every hospital in Judea, Samaria, and Gaza since 1967. Thus, for example, Rafidiah Hospital in Nablus received a radiology center in 1987 and an out-patient department in 1988. Wattani Hospital in Nablus received an intensive care unit in 1987. Ramallah Hospital received a diagnostic radiology center in 1987 and a neo-natal and premature intensive care unit 1986. Beit Jala Hospital received a radiology center in 1987. Hebron Hospital received an outpatient and laboratory wing in 1988. The Bethlehem Mental Hospital received a chronic care department for male patients in 1986. The dialysis department at Shifa Hospital in Gaza City was completely renovated in 1989. Khan Yunis Hospital’s surgical suite was refurbished in 1987. The Opthalmic Hospital in Gaza City was renovated and re-equipped in 1989.

    Infant mortality in Gaza has declined from approximately 85 deaths per 1,000 live births in 1968 to 26.1 in 1990. In Judea and Samaria, infant mortality has declined from approximately 35 deaths per 1,000 live births in 1968, to 18.1 in 1991. Following is a table showing comparisons with other countries in the region for 1991. The numbers are deaths per 1,000 live births.

    Libya 62
    Egypt 82
    Turkey 54
    Iraq 66
    Syria 37
    Tunisia 38
    Jordan 38
    Lebanon 50
    Saudi Arabia 69

    Together with the decline in infant mortality, great progress has been made in controlling and eliminating major childhood diseases, due mainly to immunization programs instituted since 1967.

    Rates (per 100,000 residents) 1970 1990 Judea/Samaria Diphtheria 0.3 0 Pertussis 8.0 0 Tetanus 53.3 0.1 Polio 4.7 0 Measles 164.0 19.0 Gaza Strip Diphtheria 0 0 Pertussis 30.1 0 Tetanus 13.6 1.0 Polio 14.3 0 Measles 605.3 18.8

    Twelve nursing schools, two of which offer BA degree programs have been opened since 1971. The numbers of both doctors and nurses have more than doubled since 1967.

    Voluntary health insurance plans unavailable before 1967 were first offered in Judea and Samaria in 1973, and in Gaza in 1976. In 1978, a new comprehensive plan was introduced; it was automatically applied to Civil Administration workers and to areas’ residents working in Israel and was offered to all other areas’ residents on a voluntary basis.

    Israel has greatly improved and expanded sewage treatment facilities in the areas. Before 1967, there were no sewage treatment plants in Judea and Samaria. Since 1967, modern installations have been built in Jenin (1971), Tulkarem (1972), Ramallah (1979), and Kalkilya (1986). The first stage of the Hebron sewage treatment plant was completed in 1991. In Gaza, sewage was managed through local septic tanks. Since 1967, treatment facilities have been improved and/or constructed in Gaza City, Khan Yunis, Jabalya, Rafiah, and the Shati refugee camp. Routine testing of sewage for various enteric bacteria was begun in 1981.

    Judea and Samaria were recognized as malaria-free areas in 1971.

    Proportion of households with:

    Running water Toilet Bathroom
    in dwelling and toilet

    1974 1992 1974 1992 1974 1992

    Gaza 13.9% 93.0% 79.0% 99.5% 18.3% 42.2%

    Judea/
    Samaria 23.5% 79.4% 78.8% 98.4% 23.7% 28.2%

    III. STANDARD OF LIVING

    The standard of living of the majority of areas’ inhabitants has improved since 1967.

    Proportion of all households with:

    Judea and Samaria Gaza Strip

    1974 1992 1974 1992

    24-hour 45.8% 75.3% 34.5% 97.6%
    electricity

    1967 1992 1967 1992

    Solar boiler 28% 57.1% 41% 81.3%
    Electric boiler 2.5% 9.7% 0.3% 12.6%
    Refrigerator 5% 81.2% 3% 91%
    Washing machine 5% 55.3% 3% 91%
    Radio 58% 81.7% 50% 94.8%
    Private Car 2% 15.9% 3% 16.8%
    Cooking range 5% 93.7% 3% 94.8%

    1981 1992 1981 1992

    Color TV set 3.4% 34.3% 0.7% 32.5%
    Telephone 5.6% 7.8% 8.0% 10.3%

    Israel has invested considerable amounts over the years in improving telecommunications services and facilities in Judea, Samaria, and Gaza. In June 1967, there were only four manually-operated telephone exchanges and 1,000 lines in the entire Gaza Strip. During the 1970s and 1980s, the Civil Administration oversaw the construction and installation of modern, automated exchanges, and the distribution of thousands of new lines throughout the Strip. A 7,000-line automatic exchange was opened in Gaza City in 1979. Lines were added to Jabalya in 1975, and Beit Lahiya in 1976. Exchanges in Deir al-Balah and Khan Yunis were expanded in 1975. In 1980, the Deir al-Balah and Khan Yunis exchanges were expanded again, as were the exchanges in Jabalya and Beit Lahiya. Today, there are six modern exchanges and over 16,000 lines. The Judea and Samaria towns of Ramallah, Nablus, Hebron, Bethlehem, and Jericho now enjoy direct international dialing services. The Civil Administration has replaced manual switchboards with automatic ones in Ramallah, Nablus, Hebron, Bethlehem, Jericho, Kalkilya, Tulkarem, and Jenin. Many previously isolated villages have been connected to the telecommunications system.

    .

    How’s that for apartheid? We’re talking about territories from 1967 to 1994 when the PA took over and began receiving vast sums of money from the international community even beyond what they had already been receiving from UNWRA and charitable organizations. Care to guess how much of that PA money went to develop health and education facilities for the Palestinians? Right, it didn’t but Suha makes $20 million a year.

    (to be cont.)

  • I thought it would be prudent at this time to look at South Africa’s size. According to the CIA Factbook:

    1,219,912 sq km

    Israel’s size:

    20,770 sq km

    Now, when SA created bantustans, I believe there was a very different approach to how space was perceived. There certainly wasn’t the need to separate a hostile side from the other side because it was simple to push people far away. Israel doesn’t do that because it cannot – it’s simply too small. South Africa had no defensive needs to speak of and did not have to endure a century of war against its neighbors. Israel has had to deal with that all of its years. South Africa’s creation was not the result of a life and death struggle between two nations, Israel’s has been between itself and several other nations comprised of the Arab nation. When SA restricted travel, it did so out of racism and malice; a desire to cut off part of its population. When Israel restricts travel, while most of the time it seems unnecessary, the fact is that it is directly linked to security and those times when that restriction safeguards Israeli civilians. When SA restricted travel, it did so without the attendant fear that a bomber or attack might be living just a few miles away and certainly no farther than a few tens of miles away. For Israel this is the daily reality. SA did not seek to separate itself entirely from the blacks but rather saw them as separate but useful. Israel seeks to separate itself entirely from the Palestinians.

  • I’m going to merely point out that this is absurd – some Leftist anti-Israel fantasy:

    “Israel’s plan of attack is to close off the Gaza Strip before withdrawing to concentrate on expansionist policies in the West Bank. Ariel Sharon hopes this will annihilate the Palestinians politically, condemning them to work for poverty wages in industrial estates along the security wall.”

    ———-

    Okay, finally read the second Roger Cohen article. Guess what, his premise is entirely wrong. Claiming that Israel doesn’t feel an existential threat coming from the Palestinians is flat out wrong. It is true they don’t feel threatened militarily, even if they do feel threatened by terror. However, the reason Sharon ended up converting to acceptance of building a security barrier and leaving Gaza was entirely due to this reason. The feeling is that demographically, the bunny-like Palestinians are reproducing at a rate that creates a time-bomb for Israel if they don’t extricate themselves from the territories.

    The reason Israel has not been talking to the Palestinians is precisely because of the reason he glosses over early in his article: there is nobody to talk to. Hamas is the leader of the Palestinians and they do not accept Israel or Oslo. Abbas is too weak to do anything and if there were doubts about that, the agreement in Mecca has put those doubts to rest.

    ————–

    I actually am quite sorry for having clicked on your blackandjews link. You consider this a reasonable source? The home page mentions than no Muslims were involved in 9/11 but Bush and the US government are implicated, while the page to which you linked has the author calling the ADL the Jew Klux Klan. Enough said. Just to remind you, the reason you quoted this conspiracy-minded loony website was to attempt to besmirch a black victim of apartheid who said there is no apartheid in Israel.

    —————

    I then went back to look at your B’Tselem -Bimkom link to which you refer above. It is from 2005 and as you should know, since then the Supreme Court has stepped in numerous times regarding the security barrier and has moved it when they felt it violated the rights of Palestinians and kept it in place or modified it slightly in areas where they felt the balance of security versus harm to Palestinians was a fair one. Clearly, an apartheid system wouldn’t have its judiciary rule in such a way.

    ———–

    Ultimately, despite all of your links and selective quotations, all you can show is an attempt to make a linkage even when it completely breaks down. Nobody says the Palestinians have it easy, they don’t. However, they are victims of their own leadership and the war they launched in 2000 and have continued to fight since. While this causes situations which are grave and even human rights violations, this is still not even close to the systematic and systemic racism of apartheid and remains, as I’ve pointed out in this discussion over and over, a function of the security situation in which Israel finds itself.

    I’m glad, by the way, that you acknowledged that within Israel there is no apartheid because as you know, this was the premise of this post.

  • Response to ‘middle’: First I did not participate in the discussion as xisnotx was doing such a superb job. He/She has all the facts and all the argumentation just right. I would not have been able to be so “surgical”.

    In his essay Time and Being, following a very hard and intense critique of Zionism, Gilad Atzmon writes:

    “The above explains why political Jews (both Zionists and anti-Zionists) will never be able to grasp what the Palestinian cause and the discourse of liberation are all about.”

    I read through your answers to xisnotx in the hope of finding something that would make me question Atzmon’s terrible conclusion above. I did not.

    And so what’s the point of debating? Events will follow their course. You will do what you have to do and we will do what we have to do.

    At a 1969 press conference in London, Golda Meir uttered a terrible prophecy. “When peace comes,” she said, “we will perhaps in time be able to forgive the Arabs for killing our sons, but it will be harder for us to forgive them for having forced us to kill their sons.”

    I shall rephrase this for you this way and while you may never understand the Palestinians, hopefully you may come to understand why we who are not Palestinians feel the way we do and why we have (at least I have) endorsed their fight: “Whether peace comes or not, I don’t think that we will ever forgive Israel for having forced us to be a party to the atrocities that it has perpetrated and is still perpetrating in the Occupied Territories.”

  • I’d almost take you seriously FurGaia, but then I’ve been to your blog where, amongst other things, you feed into the sensationalism surrounding the otherwise benign repairing of the Mugrabi Gate walkway. So spare me your pleas for understanding. The only understanding you want to know about is a Palestine Judenrein!

    But whenever you’re ready to dispense with the irrational hatred and really dumb rhetoric, let us know… we’ll be here waiting.

  • I feel ashamed to be a Canadian when I hear about these things. THank G-d for our Prime Minister.

  • FurGaia, it hurts when I laugh too hard.

    How about this: the situation for the Palestinians has become worse, not better, every time they’ve persisted with the very war on Israel that you support. It is not just a function of the immorality of targeting civilians instead of fighting soldiers, and it is not just the unjustness of fighting a war over what you believe you lost because of yet another war that you launched earlier. Rather, it is simply the stupid impracticality of it all. The Palestinians could already have had their state, with its capital in east Jerusalem and sovereignty over their section of the Temple Mount. This is a fact. Instead, they launched a war – completely unjustified, I might add – that has forced the Israelis to take the very steps about which you scream in your “apartheid” attacks. That includes the security barrier which would never have come into place without the constant suicide bombings. And that barrier, though it may be temprorary, leaves 7.5% of the West Bank to its west – including all of Jerusalem – instead of the 2.5% the Israelis would have kept according to the Clinton plan which Barak accepted in 2000. And so it goes…compromise or keep walking backwards.

    Glad to be of service. I’m sure you’ll take what I wrote to heart.

  • 1) Israelis and Jews run around the Territories etc enjoying the scenery
    2) they need sunglasses, hats, newspapers, sodas and souvenirs
    3) Arab businesses spring up to supply same
    4) Money flows into pockets of working-class Arabs
    5) Working-class Arabs are no longer completely dependent on local leadership. They have their own resources now.
    6) Local leadership doesn’t like this.
    7) Local leadership orders up an Intifada.
    8) Customers are scared away
    9) Also, little shops are forced at gunpoint to close for politcal days of rage. no profits.
    10) Working-class Arabs go back to their dependency on local leadership because they are out of business.
    11) Local leadership states that it is NICE to be in charge, and may it have some tea? Be quick about it. Don’t try that independence stuff again, if you know what’s good for you.

    What does FUrgaia say to that? I know what Marx would say. Opressor class! he would say. And he wouldn’t mean the Israeli customers. The departed customers.

  • Hi Guys!

    I’m a little busy right now and shall get back to you later on the above.

    Right now, I would simply take issue quickly with CK’s remark: “But whenever you’re ready to dispense with the irrational hatred and really dumb rhetoric, let us know… we’ll be here waiting.”

    1) What “irrational hatred”? I do not “hate” anybody. If you mean “hatred of what people do to each other”, then yes you are right. But is that hatred irrational? That’s another issue.

    2) “really dumb rhetoric”: Don’t you know that, anthropologically speaking, there never is “dumb rhetoric”. You must listen to people and try to understand where they are coming from. I thought that I had explained why I support the Palestinian struggle.

    And ‘middle’, why do I have the feeling that you are not laughing that hard when all is said and done? As they say, thou doth protest too much. I think that, like me, you have not had a night of peaceful sleep for a long time. I’ll really try to get back to you on your comment above. I don’t know why but – you may laugh – I have that strong feeling that we may not be that different you and I.

    I have to go! See you later, I hope.

  • Okay, I was only laughing a bit. But just so you know, it was about the remark where you said “…xisnotx was doing such a superb job. He/She has all the facts and all the argumentation just right.” I believe otherwise. I mean, Electronic Intifada talking points do not make a case and neither do articles from websites calling the ADL “Jew Klux Klan.”

    Still, if what you want is peace, we’re on the same side. My version of peace is simple: a Jewish state next to a Palestinian state. The terms of the agreement along the lines of what Barak proposed at Taba on the basis of Clinton’s recommendations. The Palestinian state agrees to stay demilitarized and signs off on “end of conflict.”

  • Furgaia, nobody was disrespecting you. You write beautiful English and obviously just want a good world. You are correct that we are just like you in that way; we also want a good world.

    But you are just dealing in emotions. You have not answered one single intellectual challenge. Please don’t do that.

    You just cannot bear that G-d gave us a country without allowing us to remain the peaceful people we were through two un-armed millenia. Well, we have tried to be nice about it but you can’t have a country and be nice about it. Not even we can do that.

    Please try to remember that there is plenty of Arab and Islamic sovereignty in the world, in very large swathes of geography, all across North Africa, extending to the Far East.

    It is perfectly all right for us to want to have a patch of oil-free sand the size of New Jersey. In peace. No one has injured the full functioning of the Jerusalem mosque either. There are services there every week.

    This apartheid word cracked Middle up because of the utter falseness of it.

    Oh, and Jimmy Carter just MUST be wearing blue-tinted contacts. At his age everybody needs glasses. He is so handsome and earnest looking.

  • It is a matter of public record that very significant sums supporting Jimmy Carter’s Center come from Saudi sources. That’s not all of his funding but the sums are still large. That is too convenient.

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