February 15, 2007
This week has been declared "Apartheid week" on campuses throughout North America. Spurred on by Carter's book, Arabs and liberal leftists throughout the world are celebrating international recognition of South Africa in the Middle East.
Many op-ed pieces and articles are attacking the apartheid label. But I think they're wrong. In this case I'm in agreement with many who are 'on the other side.' Of course, though, we are viewing different realities, and seeing an entirely dissimilar picture. But they are correct. Israel practices apartheid, and another of their favorite phrases, 'ethnic cleansing.' So sad, but true it is.
Yesterday three prominent Israeli authors, Amos Oz, A.B. Yehoshua, and David Grossman, all outspoken and on the extreme left of the political spectrum, published a letter calling on the government to stop neglecting the Gush Katif expellees, many of whom are still living in horrible conditions, and are still unemployed.
On the face of it such a plea should be acclaimed. It isn't every day that such extreme left wingers show any sympathy for, and publicly advocate in favor of any of us associated with the 'extreme right.' But, unfortunately, in all actuality, they don't give a damn about the 10,000 Jews expelled from Gush Katif and the northern Shomron. Their plea has nothing to do with humanity. The reason behind their unusual demand it totally political, sickening so. As published in HaAretz newspaper [http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/825958.html] "the current neglect of the evacuees from Gush Katif [Gaza's main settlement bloc] is likely to erode the state's legitimacy should it decide to carry out a similar process in the future."
In other words, 'if we [they] don't take good care of these evictees, we won't be able to do it again – we will not be able to expel another 200,000 Jews from their homes and communities.' Clearly, once Yesha has been totally ethnically cleansed, these three men surely will not speak about their former residents' plights, for another expulsion will not be necessary. The 'legitimacy,' as quoted above, will no longer be a problem.
In the words of Grossman, Yehoshua, and Oz, the Gush Katif refugees are not people, not Israelis, deserving of a home, a school, a job, rather they are pawns to be taken advantage of, utilized to plan and legitimize the next transport.
Yesterday the Arutz 7 Hebrew site posted an article dealing with the 'ministerial committee' set up by Olmert and Co. to investigate law enforcement against Jews in Hebron. During a meeting of the Knesset Legislation and Law Committee, the IDF prosecutor, Col Avichai Mandelblat told the lawmakers that the number of 'incidents' by Jews in Hebron against Arabs has tremendously decreased and that of late, almost no incidents have been reported at all. MK Uri Ariel asked him why the cabinet had established the special ministerial committee and was told that the issue had not even been of the cabinet's agenda. These facts were backed up the Shai Nitzan, assistant attorney general for special affairs. In Ariel's words, the ministerial committee was not established for legal reasons, rather for political considerations alone.
This, of course, must be place in the correct context. Back in the days of the Rabin-Peres oppression, while Oslo was being shoved down Israel's collective throat, then Attorney General Michael Ben Yair, established 'secret' special administrative rules to deal with Jews living in all of Yesha, but most particularly , with Hebron's Jewish population. These special rules and regulations were admitted to by Ben Yair's successor, Eliyakim Rubenstein, who was ordered to void them immediately, an act which has yet to be fully implemented. (See: http://www.hebron.com/english/article.php?id=301)
In the past few weeks there have been at least ten serious security 'incidents,' perpetrated against Hebron's Jewish population: There have been FOUR attempts by Arabs to infiltrate into Jewish neighborhoods – three times Arabs have successfully, illegally, (and dangerously) entered the Avraham Avinu neighborhood, under the 'watchful eyes' of the IDF. Yesterday two Arabs were discovered by an Israeli woman trying to get into the Tel Rumeida neighborhood.
In addition, Arabs attempted to kidnap a teenage girl between Hebron and Kiryat Arba, hurled a bomb at a van carrying Hebron children, and have thrown a number of pipe bombs into the "Israeli-controlled' side of Hebron. Hebron children have also been attacked by Arab youth, usually while walking to their Tel Rumeida homes.
Thank G-d, these infiltrations and attacks did not lead to injuries or loss of life. However, we have yet to see a 'special governmental ministerial committee' being established to investigate attempts to murder Jews in Hebron.
The present government, led by Olmert, Peretz and Livni, has announced time and time again that their goal is to rid Judea and Samaria of it's Jewish population, abandoning this part of Eretz Yisrael to our enemies, as was done in Gush Katif. It is clear that in order to ethnically cleanse this part of Israel, they will have no choice but to segregate those of us living in Yehuda and Shomron, separating us from the 'general Israeli public,' delegitimizing us, thereby proving to Jews throughout Israel and the world 'how dangerous we are,' and how we are THE threat to peace in the Middle East, and in the entire world. In order to accomplish such a feat, they will use all tools at their disposal, including the police, the courts and the entire justice system.
What better a way to begin then in Hebron, creating kangaroo courts, which refuse to allow Jews to live in their homes, prevent them from building, and in essence, retract any rights we still might have. After all, a year ago the Israeli government signed an agreement with Hebron's leadership. This agreement promised that following a voluntary exit of nine families and a Torah study hall from the Mitzpe Shalhevet neighborhood (the old Arab market), the community would receive permission to 'legally' move back into these apartments within a relatively short period of time.
Following our self-imposed expulsion, present attorney general Menachem Mazuz was quick to deny that any 'deal' had been signed. He later retracted this statement, admitted that an agreement had been reached, but invalidated it, saying that the general representing the state as not authorized to ok it. A year later, and we still haven't been granted the permission we were guaranteed by the commander of forces in Judea and Samaria to move back into Mitzpe Shalhevet.
Apartheid is defined at dictionary.com as "any system or practice that separates people according to race, caste, etc. In our case, the 'etc' relates to where people live, and what they believe. Religious Jews who believe in the right to live in a city such as Hebron or elsewhere in Judea and Samaria, and have the audacity to actually live there are, in the eyes of Olmert et al, a force to be reckoned with, to be set aside, to be segregated, to be delegitimized, all prerequisites of Israeli ethnic cleansing number three. (Don't forget Yamit.) In other words, apartheid at its worst. Jew against Jew. The Israeli government is starting in Hebron. Others are sure to follow. Be warned: the writing's on the wall.
And don't forget to celebrate: Happy Apartheid Week!