There is no Apartheid in Israel / DR.Rivka Shpak Lissak

Former President James.E.Carter published a book on December 2006,on the Israeli - Palestinian conflict,titled,"Palestine:Peace not Apartheid", in which he called Israel an apartheid regime. Carter , thus joined the European left and right,the Arabic- Palestinian propaganda, some Israeli post-Zionists and international organization for human right.

Is there any justification for such accusation?


Apartheid is the South African term for racial segregation. The term used in the United States is racial segregation.Both terms represent racial regimes in which people are deprived of their political, social and economic rights because of the color of their skin. Apartheid represent political, social and economical separation between white and black citizens of the same state.


All southern states passed racial segregation laws following the end of the period of reconstruction(1865 - 1877)- the policy ordered by the American Congress at the end of the Civil War(1861- 1865).

Education- the education system was separated from nursery school to university. In schools for blacks only blacks could attend and teach, and black- only schools suffered from terrible discrimination with regard to funding and an abysmally low standard of education.

Public services - govenment services, restaurants, hospitals, prisons and even telephone booths were entirely segregated. There were separate entrances, separate bathrooms, and separate services for blacks by blacks.White people did notwork in black facilities.Needless to say the quality of the services for blacks was a lot lower than whites.

Industry - there was total separation in the areas where people worked, in showers, bathrooms, cafeterias and all other facilities.The AFL, the Federation of American Labor,did not allow blacks to join its workers'unions.In 1935, sections of the AFL resigned and formed the CIO , the Committe for Industrial Organization, which accepted black members, but in separate unionsin which they were discriminated in wages, employment and social conditions. Thus it was until the 1960s.

Transportation- completely segregated waiting rooms, ticket offices,bathrooms, and cafeterias. Trains had separate carriages for blacks;and in buses, blacks could only enter trough the back door and occupy the rear seats. If a white person told a black person to give up his or her seat, the later person had to obey.

Pro- equality propaganda - it was forbidden to speak or write on the subject of racial inequality.It was illegal to publish printed or tyewritten material. The punishment was a 500% fine or 6 months in jail , or both.Inter-racial marriage was completely forbdden and offenders were heavily punished.

Legal system - a black person could not serve on a jury, and the police and judicial system was all white, and incluses members or supporters of the Ku Klux Klan, an organization whose raison d'etre was to ensure the supremacy of the white race and prevent blacks from achieving the civil equality granted them by the American Congress in 3 constitutional amendments passed after the end of the Civil Wae in 1865.

In case of white people being accused of murdering blacks- and there were many such cases- threats, terror, beating and lynching, to prevent blacks from receiving a fair trail.T he local police was involved in these activities or turned a blind eye. From 1882- 1930, there were 400 cases of blacks being lynched. There are no records regarding the number of lynching before 1882 and the records after are incomplete. The number was much higher.

Denial of political rights - blacks had the right to vote and to be elected under the American federal law, so it was not possible to deprive blacks of these rights through legislation so southern states' legislatures found sophisticated ways to bypass federal low.

Under federal low, all voters had to be registered on the electoral list. This meant that anyone with a right to cove who did not register could not vote.T legilatures in the south instituted reading and writing tests which most blacks were unable to pass because they were illiterate.Tests would also be failed arbitrarily. In addition, there was a fee for registering as a voter, which most blacks could't pay because they were poor.The KKK also prevented blacks from registeribg by standing at the door to the registration offices and physically stoping blacks from entering. The KKK also operated a system of threats and terror and the black community had no representation at all.

This situation remauned undisturbed by the federal government from the 1870s to 1950s.In 1950s the Civil Rights Movement, founded by Martin Luther King, began its political and public struggle against racial segregation. In the 1960s, a series of laws was passed by the American Congress designed to stamp out racial segregation.


Apartheid or racial segregation is not related at all to the situation in Israel. The condition of blacks under the segregation laws in the American south or in South Africa is not silmiliar at all to the conditio of Israeli-Arab citizens.No one denies that Israeli- Arabs suffer of discrimination socially and economically, but not politically. The distance between the situation of Israeli- Arabs and apartheid is tremendous.


Those who accuse Israel for being an apartheid regime are not concerned with the situation of Israeli- Arabs. They maintain that Israel applied apartheid rule to the Palestinians in the occupied territories, and they attack the security fence built by Israel to separate itself from the Palestinian Authority as a symbol of apartheid.

This accusation is ill-grounded because the Palestinians are not Israeli citizens and the occupied terrotories were never annexed to Israel.Therefore, the use of the term apartheid is not only irrelevant but an attempt to twist reality. Israel is in a state of conflict with the Palestinians, but what we have here is a conflict between 2 national movements over the area between the Mediterranean sea and the Jordan river.

The Western Bank and Gaza Strip were conquered in 1967 from the kingdoms of Jordan and Egyept in respond to a military attack on Israel. Today, the Western Bank (Israel withdrew its settlers and army from the Gaza Strip) is divided into areas under Palestinian rule and areas under Israeli rule. Administering on occupied territory does not come under the category of apartheid. This is an occupied area which will mostly be evacuated by Israel when the Palestinian sign a peace agreement with Israel.Israeli military measures in the Western Bank are defensive actions designed only to prevent palestinian terror from penetrating into Israel and kill civilians. These actions will stop when Palestinian terror stops.


T fence built by Israel is intended to prevent Palestinian terror from penetrating Israel and murdering innocent citizens. Many states built fences, including Arab states to protect their citizens from hostile penetration.Israel declared that the fence will be moved according to the peace agreement terms. But, Israel is the only state in the world under attack because of building a fence. There can be a dispute on the outline of the fence,and Israel's Supreme Court deals with such cases, and the fence had already been moved on certain points as a result. There is no justification to call the fence an apartheid fence or blame Israel for erecting it.Also, the fence is not a permanent border and can be moved under the terms of a peace agreement.

Israel is the victim of 2 factors:the campaign for de- legitimatio of the very existance of Israel as a Jewish state conducted by Arab- Palestinian - Muslim propaganda, and anti- Israelism campaign condufted by a combinatuin of right and left wings in the Western world, which in most cases is nothing more than a camouflage for anti-Semitism and anti-Judaism. There is a fundamental difference between criticizing Israel's policy and denying the Jews the right for self-determination or denying their historical connection to Israel, their homeland.

The real issue behind the accusations against Israel as an apartheid regime and human rights denial, is the refusal of both, the Arab-Muslim World and the New Western Anti- Semitism, to recognize the historical link between the Jewish people and the land of Israel, and the right of the Jewish people for self-determination.

The difference between the Old anti-Semitism and the New anti-Semitism, as defined by professor Irwin Cotler, an expert in international law and advocate of human rights,is that the old was directed against the Jews as individuals and the new is directed against the Jews as a nation.The Jewish nation is the only nation in the world whose right of self-determination is denied.

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