Jul 17 2013
‘Al Quds al Arabi’ Arabic newspaper in the UK publishes Israel’s ‘Haaretz’ op-ed explaining why Israel is NOT an apartheid state.
Elder of Ziyon Credit where credit is due: the pan-Arab, British based Arabic newspaper Al Quds al-Arabi published a Haaretz op-ed by Shuki Friedman that proves that Israel is not an apartheid state.
In recent months, the State of Israel has been repeatedly denounced in this very newspaper as an apartheid state. The analogy of Israel to an apartheid state – namely to late 20th-century South Africa – has been seeping into the public discourse, and politicians and spokespeople have been turning it into a familiar idiom that is gaining in popularity.
An answer to these claims was provided by the Pet Shop Boys, which, in response to calls in Britain not to appear in “Israel, the apartheid state,” sent protesters to do their history homework. Well, here is that history lesson, and it shows that the British band was right. The description of the inequality between groups in Israel as apartheid is a travesty of reality and history.
…The difference between the apartheid regime in South Africa and the situation in Israel and the occupied territories is so clear that there is no point in even stating all its nuances. Even if, on the margins, there are cases in Israel that are reminiscent of phenomena in apartheid South Africa, I suppose that even the most radical critics do not consider these cases as institutionalized, calculated, ideological racial segregation.
Neither does the Israeli situation comply with the definition of the crime of apartheid as it appears in the Rome Statute. The statute states that the crime of apartheid is seen to be committed when there is an institutionalized goal and action taken to discriminate and oppress another people. This is not the case in Israel, nor is it the case in Judea and Samaria.
The comparison of Israel to an apartheid state began in academic papers from the late 1980s. It then became popularized following the breakdown of the Oslo Accords. The approval of the international war crimes tribunal treaty – which stated that apartheid is a crime against humanity – brought a surge of calls to prosecute the State of Israel at the court in The Hague.
Finally, since 2005, Apartheid Week has been observed around the world, with Israel’s most extreme critics preaching the gospel of Israel as an apartheid state. The success of this campaign is so great that many of the critics of Israel and its policies have adopted the analogy. The idea has seeped in so deeply that the second result when Googling the word “apartheid” is “Israel and apartheid.” When the situation on the ground is complex, and facts can be manipulated, even serious people are tempted to believe this narrative.
Having been branded with the “apartheid” label, the facts have become almost irrelevant to the Israeli situation. Every phenomenon, every law, every statement by a politician or a public figure having to do with Jewish-Arab relations is immediately tagged as another layer in the apartheid regime supposedly at work here. Now, how can you disprove a fabrication?