Thursday, May 24, 2007

Is Israel an Apartheid State?


W Dean said...

Whereas the defining principle of apartheid in South Africa was 'White' versus 'Non-White', the defining principle of apartheid in Israel was, and remains, 'Jew' versus 'Non-Jew'.
Racism is not apartheid and apartheid is not racism. Apartheid is racism enforced by Acts of Parliament. In my view it is wrong to single out the State of Israel on the grounds that racism in Israel is significantly more rife than in many other member states of the UN. It is, however, right, correct and necessary to single out the State of Israel, alone or otherwise, on the grounds that after the demise of apartheid in the Republic of South Africa it remains the only, or near only, member state of the UN that regulates racism through Acts of Parliament (Knesset) and applies the force of the law to compel its citizens to make racial choices, first and foremost in all matters pertaining to access to land, housing and freedom of residence, correlatively criminalising humanitarian choices.

The list below represents the strategic legislative scaffold on which Israeli apartheid hangs:

1950 - Absentees Property Law; Law of Return; Development Authority Law;

1952 - World Zionist Organization -- Jewish Agency Status Law;

1953 - Keren Kayemeth Leisrael (Jewish National Fund) Law; Land Acquisition (Validations of Acts and Compensation) Law;

1954 - Covenant between the Government of Israel and the Zionist Executive, also known as the Executive of the Jewish Agency for the Land of Israel;

1958 - Prescription Law;

1960 - Basic Law: Israel Lands; Israel Lands Law; Israel Lands Administration Law;

1961 - Covenant Between the Government of Israel and the Jewish National Fund

In all matters pertaining to the question of settlement, cultivation and land development, Israeli apartheid is significantly more extreme than the now defunct South African apartheid. Whereas in apartheid South Africa 87 per cent of the territory of the republic was reserved by law for settlement, cultivation and development of 'Whites only', in the State of Israel, the combined result of the laws listed above is that 93 per cent of the territory of the State of Israel ('Israel proper', so- called, excluding the post-1967 occupied territories) is reserved by law for 'Jews only'.

NoolaBeulah said...

That is not true, though it accurately reflects a myth put about by the usual suspects for the usual reasons.

1. 80% of the land is state-owned and may not be sold to anyone, Jew or non-Jew. However, it can be, and is leased to both Jew and non-Jew.

2. 13.5% of the land belongs to the Jewish National Fund, founded in 1901 with the express purpose of buying land for Jewish settlement. This was interpreted to mean that land might not be leased to non-Jews, a stricture circumvented in practice and recently found in violation of Israeli anti-discrimination laws.

3. 6.5% of the land is privately owned, by Jews and non-Jews.

It would be interesting to know what the position is in the PA and Jordan and in other nearby countries.

W Dean said...

Still regurgitating half truths I see.

You point out that that 80% of the land is stated owned and leased to non-jews but ...

1. You fail to mention that quite a lot of that land was confiscated from the 'Israeli' Arabs.


2. You also fail to mention that before you can get to the ILA to lease land you have to get through various organisations that do discrimate.

Furthermore, the JNF and ILA work quite closely together and even exchange directors so it's quite easy to see that they have the same aim.

As for that law you mentioned, it was only passed a couple of years a go. The JNF weaseled out of it by getting a guarantee that for each donum of land they sold to a non jew they do be compensated with a donum of state land.

W Dean said...

correction: 80% of the land is stated owned and can be leased to jews and non-jews.

NoolaBeulah said...

Well, at least we have declined from 'apatheid' to 'discrimination'. One implies that the state itself is delegitimised by its action. The other, though by no means to be recommended, is hardly surprising given the context. It is to Israel's credit that at least it legislates against it.

Discrimination against Israeli Arabs should be criticised because we should apply to Israel the standards we apply to ourselves. The problem is that those standards are so rarely applied to the states (and 'bodies') that surround Israel and seek its destruction.

The land that the state holds, by the way, was that inherited from the British Mandate, which was in turn land owned by the Ottoman state. It merely passed from one administration to the other.