What Is Apartheid?
The Security Fence is not an Apartheid Wall
Apart·heid noun \ə-ˈpär-ˌtāt, -ˌtīt\
1: racial segregation; specifically: a former policy of segregation and political and economic discrimination against non-European groups in the Republic of South Africa.
| Goal of Separation |
| The explicit goal of bantustans was the elimination of rights of the majority South African black population, to ensure white hegemony. |
| The explicit goal of the security fence is preventing surreptitious terrorist entry to Israel, which has caused the murder of hundreds of Israeli citizens. |
| Citizenship || A central goal of official apartheid "separate development" was to strip black South Africans of their citizenship. |
| West Bank Palestinians were never citizens of Israel. (Arabs, meanwhile, constitute 15% of the Israeli citizenry.) |
| Forced Transfer |
| Between 1950 and 1986, about 1.5 million Africans were forcibly removed from "white" cities to rural reservations. |
|The security fence causes no transfer of population. |
| Permanence || South African bantustans were an effort to force a permanent international status on lands, and the black population living there. |
|The security fence is a temporary defensive measure, not a border; inconveniences caused by the fence are reversible. |
The fence has already been shown to save lives:
- The accusation that Israel is an apartheid state is factually and morally incorrect. Those making this claim seek only to isolate and demonize Israel from the family of nations and undermine the right of the Jewish people, like all other peoples, to national independence in their homeland.
- Apartheid-era South Africa was a state-sanctioned system of racial separation and discrimination which dominated nearly every aspect of daily life between 1948 and 1994. This is not even remotely the case in Israel, where there is one law for all citizens and minorities have full political rights. These rights are enshrined in Israel’s legal system, including its founding document – the Declaration of Independence.
- Israel, like every other liberal democracy, faces challenges in ensuring fair and equitable treatment of its minority citizens. Nevertheless, Israel’s track record compares favorably with other pluralistic democracies, especially when considering how precarious and vulnerable the state was for much of its existence. Freedoms we all cherish, such as freedom of press, speech and religion, are centerpieces of Israeli law.
- Israeli citizens, regardless of race, religion, or nationality, have the ability to challenge their government’s actions which Americans do not possess. A petition may be brought before the Supreme Court’s High Court of Justice, which has previously allowed citizens to successfully challenge government actions and policies, including IDF operations.
- The North American Jewish community understands the difficulties facing minority populations in Israel and is fully committed to advancing civic equality so both Israeli Jews and Arabs can contribute, participate and benefit as full citizens.
- Those making the Apartheid accusation are less concerned with resolving the conflict than undermining the idea that the Jewish people, like all others, have a right to national independence in their homeland.
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