Sunday, December 22, 2013

'A Fierce Opponent of Apartheid'

Just look at this rubbish from yesterday's Sydney Morning Herald:

"Ironically, as the Abbott government prepares to soften the laws against racially offensive speech, the O'Farrell government in NSW seems headed down a different path. This week, it announced the appointment of Jewish Board of Deputies head Vic Alhadeff as new chairman of the state Community Relations Commission. Alhadeff, a former South African newsman, was a fierce opponent of apartheid who lost grandparents in the Holocaust. He is a staunch defender of anti-discrimination laws, particularly those aimed at racism." (Inside job draws fire, Deborah Snow, 21/12/13)

A fierce opponent of apartheid?

Says who? Where's the proof?

And as for the uber, ongoing Israeli variety, Alhadeff doesn't even recognise it. This is as far as he's prepared to go:

"It is axiomatic that Israeli society is a work in progress and that Arab Israelis suffer disadvantage in various spheres.... It is also a given that the condition of the Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza is a serious issue, albeit inextricably bound up with the root cause of the conflict, which is the fundamental refusal to accept Israel's existence." (Israel: it's not black & white, The Australian, 1/3/12)

So 'Arab Israelis' suffer disadvantage in Israel (im)proper, and Palestinians under Israeli occupation (a word which Alhadeff cannot even bring himself to use) in the West Bank and Gaza have only themselves to blame for not crying uncle.

Just how fierce can "a fierce opponent of apartheid" be?

OK, enough already, you want the real thing, and Jewish to boot? Here he is. His name is Ronnie Kasrils:

"I am from a background which afforded me privileges in white South Africa, but I grew up with a social conscience and could not tolerate the cruelty and oppression against my black compatriots. After the Sharpeville massacre of March 1961... I took the decision to become an activist and joined the ANC. I was involved in demonstrations and soon came to understand that armed actions were required to reinforce the mass political struggle. I consequently responded to Nelson Mandela's call for volunteers to join the movement's military wing Umkhonto we Sizwe (MK). I was subsequently on the run from the police, left the country for military training in the former Soviet Union, and worked throughout Africa in our military camps and on the front line. I became chief of military intelligence for MK." (Anti-apartheid: An interview with Ronnie Kasrils,, 27/9/12)

And here is Kasrils on apartheid Israel:

"What is taking place in Palestine reminds us, South African freedom fighters, of what we suffered from... Palestine is an example of people who were dispossessed of land and birthright just like the indigenous people of South Africa. As a Jew, I abhor the fact that the Zionist rulers of Israel/Palestine claim they are acting in the name of Jews everywhere. I am one of many Jews internationally, and in Israel itself, who declare 'Not in my name'... In the Israeli case, it is quite clear that non-Jews do not receive equal rights and treatment as Jews, but the Zionists are embarrassed to admit this. Consequently, they attempt to conceal the fact that Israel is not a democracy for all its citizens, but they have various laws to ensure that Jews receive preferential treatment. It is apartheid by another name. I refer here to the situation in Israel itself where over 40 laws give Jews privileges and rights over non-Jews. In the Occupied Palestinian Territories, it is quite a different matter where open and strict apartheid laws allow for the segregation and control of the Palestinian people whilst the illegal Jewish settlements receive State protection and privileges. But in both cases - Israel itself and the OPT - a clear system of apartheid-style rule operates." (ibid)

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