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Jewish Apartheid - Still Apartheid

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  • ummyakoub
    Jewish Apartheid - Still Apartheid by Joh Domingo (re: Uri Avnery on Apartheid) http://world.mediamonitors.net/content/view/full/4299/?
    Message 1 of 1 , Feb 3, 2004
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      Jewish Apartheid - Still Apartheid
      by Joh Domingo

      (re: Uri Avnery on Apartheid)

      http://world.mediamonitors.net/content/view/full/4299/?
      PHPSESSID=1fae7f2af45a3a451ff1918755c5dadf

      Uri Avnery is a good guy, but his thinking
      is completely corrupted. His new article on Apartheid has to be
      silliest
      I have read for a long time. Basically he says that just because
      Apartheid SEEMS similar to Zionism, it does not mean that they are
      the same. Nothing wrong with that; they are not the same, just
      similar. He then goes on to explain the differences, and how
      important they are, and here he goes completely wonky. He thinks
      people just draw similarities between Apartheid and Zionism in the
      hope that public opinion will put pressure on the Israeli Government,
      like it did on Apartheid. That is it? That is why the similarities
      are drawn? We should stop this because. he does not say. Never
      mind that the similarities are striking, he goes out of his way to
      explain
      the differences, it is somehow important.

      It is the detail of his listed differences that a whiff of an agenda
      surfaces. This is not just idle comment. Israel IS different because:

      Number one on his list is the concept of `Apartheid'. It
      means many things beyond the simple concept its translation implies.
      It
      literally means `separation', but this was a benign term used
      by the regime to pretend, `separate but equal". They pretended that
      it was a good thing to allow blacks to develop their own culture,
      away from
      other races. The fact that they pretended meant that knew what they
      intended was wrong. That it would be unacceptable to public opinion
      at large and that it would upset the natives if they were more
      direct. `Separateness' was not confined to Bantustans, it
      applied at every level in South Africa, social, political, rural and
      metropolitan. Blacks were to be separated from whites wherever they
      might co-exist. Uri Avnery suggests that we might find a similarity
      between the Bantustans and the Territories, but to extend this
      similarity `ad absurdum' is a mistake. Is he suggesting that
      this where the `separate' similarity ends? I don't know, it is
      a strange piece, Israel is very similar in the way it develops its
      suburbs,
      and
      the way it inhibits natural growth of existing Non-Jewish towns and
      villages. It is similar in the way it restricts land from being
      purchased by non-Jewish natives. It is similar in the way Arabs
      surreptitiously acquire lodgings in Jewish areas of Jerusalem. It is
      the SAME. There are few to no differences that I can think of. Yes,
      there is one difference, the non-White residents of old and well-
      established areas in South Africa were systematically relocated to
      outlying areas of metropolitan districts. Palestinians in Jerusalem
      are cleansed without any regard as to where they are expected to go.

      But he says that the differences are more important than the
      similarities. So we continue on our search for these differences.
      Israelis are 60% of the population, the whites were barely 10% in
      Apartheid South Africa. As an aside he erroneously posits that Ghandi
      fought his first battles for the rights of Indians and Blacks.
      Mahatma did not fight for the rights of Blacks. Sorry Mr. Avnery I
      know it is nice story, but the Mahatma was implacably opposed to any
      rights for Black people. He thought they were Savages. He might have
      changed his opinions, but while he was in South Africa, he fought to
      distinguish the Indians from the Africans and regularly wrote letters
      to the Indian Gazette in which he referred to them as indolent
      Kaffirs.

      Still Uri Avnery is right; Jews are a Majority in Israel while white
      people were a minority in South Africa. I fail to see what difference
      this distinction creates, except to demonstrate that groups of people
      can be subjugated when they are a minority just as well as when they
      are a majority. Oppressors can do it with a few men, and with many
      men.

      He hits the jackpot when he draws attention to the fact that South
      Africa was reliant on its cheap labor, while Israel can import the
      labor it needs. It explains why Israel can survive industrial action.
      In fact it undertakes industrial action of its own and bans workers
      from reaching their jobs. This difference is evident when you compare
      Israel to virtually any industrialized country. It is different from
      the Netherlands, France, America, and England. But the economy is the
      economy. It is the same everywhere; and when the social conditions
      are unsettled; it underperforms. Israel is in a deep recession
      because of its social unrest. It may take a longer for this perpetual
      recession to bite, but eventually it wears the toughest ones out.
      Economic factors in South Africa caused by the unrest, and the
      international sanctions regime had a tremendous effect. But the
      economic consequences of unrest bites where it matters most, with
      investment flows, and ultimately with ordinary Israeli's. No one
      issue in the anti-Zionist campaign can be expected to produce the
      goods. A combination of pressure is required.

      But Avnery toddles on and reaches shaky shaky ground when he suggests
      that there is a huge difference between the Palestinians and Black
      South
      African
      attitudes toward the State. Disenfranchised people don't care
      about the State until they become enfranchised. The vast majority of
      Palestinians are disenfranchised. They have no stake in the State, so
      their attitude mirrors the attitude of Black South Africans during
      the Apartheid years. They want it to burn. Black South Africans
      literally burnt everything they could that belonged to the State.
      Schools, Shebeens, Police Stations, Policemen's homes, and people
      that represented the State, even in a peripheral way like informing
      on their comrades. Black people felt alienated, unwanted and hated
      much like Palestinians do, today.

      What is even more similar, are the attitudes of White South Africans
      then, and Jewish Israelis today. They both felt that they were chosen
      to rule over the land. They both had a culture of Supremacy, and they
      both looked down on the native inhabitants. They both saw themselves
      as historical victims of genocide and extermination camps. White
      South Africans attempted, and Israelis attempt, to alter the
      demographic composition of the land by creating separate political
      and geographic entities for the unwanted native population.

      A point of difference is that while Black South African's took
      several generations to develop a positive mental image of themselves
      and break the chains of oppression in their minds; Palestinians have
      always had a strong self-consciousness. They have never accepted a
      servile self-image of themselves, even as they are brutally punished
      for asserting a defiant resistance. Mr. Avnery forgets that had Black
      South Africans not demonstrated a strong resistance to Apartheid and
      separation, much of the Western World would have accepted the State
      of Affairs, while pretending an `outrage'. They would have
      gone along. Sending in armed interventionist forces to overthrow the
      regime was never a consideration. If South Africa could have somehow
      contained the resistance by using unrestrained force of the kind
      utilized by Israel as a matter of course, Apartheid would still be
      around. Every anti-Apartheid effort helped in the end, but it began
      as Black resistance to Apartheid that was the bedrock of the anti-
      Apartheid struggle.. Without it, all the rest would have fallen on
      deaf ears. It is no different in Palestine, the end of the Apartheid
      Zionist regime begins and rests on the resistance of the Palestinians.

      Another similarity is the process of co-opting collaborationist in an
      effort to lend credibility to Apartheid. Many liberal White anti-
      Apartheid politicians were in favor of a negotiated settlement in the
      name of `peace'. Some of the Black collaborationist had a
      sizeable following. Chief Gatsha Buthelezi for instance was no
      lightweight,
      and lent his imprimatur to the concept of appeasement and was a
      strong proponent of the Bantustan concept. So much so that Inkatha
      and the liberation forces of the ANC and UDF engaged in a lengthy and
      bloody low-level civil war that claimed thousands of lives.

      The White Nationalist `Freedom Party' were also allied with
      Lucas Mongope, Bhaputaswana's Prime Minister in an attempt to head off
      a government of unification led by the ANC. They projected an image of
      armed invincibility and claimed the support of the Army. The public
      service revolt in Bhaputaswana and the subsequent wounding, and
      public execution (on TV) of two `armed militia' from the
      Freedom party put paid to the idea that white people were militarily
      invincible. The "Two-State solution' has an echo in the
      reality of the political situation in South Africa then.. The PLO has
      marginalized themselves by persisting in its endeavor to partition
      the land. If anything, Sharon is right when he asserts that Arafat is
      irrelevant. But so is any alternative that even attempts to reach a
      compromise based on partition.

      But for Uri Avnery, it all boils down to the `World's
      attitude'. The world was also opposed to the bombing campaigns of the
      ANC.
      The ANC
      was on the USA's list of `terrorist organizations'. It
      matters little if the attitude of the world is negative or positive
      towards
      the
      Palestinians. What is important is that the `World' be
      convinced that Israel cannot contain the situation. If they cannot
      contain
      it, then
      the `World' has to do something. They have to make a stand
      one way or the other. There is no imperative for them to do this
      without the
      Intifada, or the bombing campaigns. Without them, Israel can drag it
      out forever, and present many knotty solutions and arguments; it will
      be business as usual.

      Faced with this reality, Black South Africans; paid scant attention
      to world opinion. They never considered if America was for their
      liberation or not. They were focussed on making the country
      ungovernable, by any means possible, and disrupting the designs and
      plans of the regime. If their supporters around the world had called
      for them to abandon the struggle, and violence, they would have paid
      absolutely no heed and would hardly have noticed. Numerous highly
      credentialed people shuttled back and forth bearing countless
      solutions. Nobody in South Africa cared. They hardly noticed. As far
      as they were concerned, those people were doing what they did only
      for themselves, and it made little difference to the activities of
      resistance on the ground. This is how it is on the other side.
      No `outside influence' or `World Opinion' is going to
      change that reality.

      He is wrong if he believes that it is up to the Israeli people. He is
      wrong if he believe that `ending the occupation' will cut it.
      He is wrong if he believes "two States for two people' will fly. He
      may be able to find a Mangope's, or Buthelezi, but ultimately he will
      have to deal with the challenge of the Intifada, which he has not even
      begun to do.

      JohD

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