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What are your thoughts on calling Israel an 'Apartheid State'? Is the Barrier an 'Apartheid Wall' or a 'Security Fence'?

I am writing a paper at the moment for presentation in a conference in 12 days and I still can't coherently formulate my argument against Diasporas engaging in dialogue from the position that Israel is an 'Apartheid State'. My thoughts thus far are that while the occupation, the "Matrix of Control" as Jeff Halper calls it, is suffocating and inhibits Palestinian statehood, not to mention breaching human rights and human dignity, using the analogy of apartheid in South Africa obscures the historical context of the I/P conflict. This has two downsides. For one, it undermines historical reasons for the current state of the conflict and obscures legitimate Israeli security concerns, assumes that Israel's reasons for erecting the Barrier were for racist reasons, and in the process attributes the whole of the conflict to skin color or religion over territory and nationalism. Two, it overlooks the specificity of Palestinian suffering, and the use of 'rights discourses' of Apartheid doesn't fully do justice to the totality of the conflict, the refugees, and Israeli Arabs in particular. So what I'm trying to say, I believe, is that on the one hand it downplays certain factors that shouldn't be overlooked while sensationalizing 'Apartheid' as a loaded political term, utilizing its expedience, dehuminizing lives lost over causes overshadowed by the analogy, on the other. I think in the case of Diasporas and dialogue the 'Apartheid' analogy is unhelpful because it doesn't lead to mutual understanding but rather engages the 'Other' in a disposition empty of trust and full of anger and hatred. I don't see how anger and hatred will facilitate a starting point to dialogue. But what do you think?

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Hi Matt,

Even blind people can see the suffering of the Palestinians. The game players pretend that only they (the game players) see the all too obvious to all truth (the suffering of the Palestinians).

Like you Matt."I don't see how anger and hatred will facilitate a starting point to dialogue."

Moreover I think that all who sprout and propagate the trite and overly simplistic and misleading jargon are simply voyeuristically entrenching and inflaming and prolonging the conflict!
===> EMOTIVE AND/OR EMOTIONAL AND/OR COUNTER-FACTUAL BLAME GAME.

In addition, these evil games deliberately ignore WHY the Palestinians are suffering, and exploit that suffering for the political benefit of the game players.
And Matt, you and others are observing a very dirty and nasty Civil War that started in 1947, became a war between States and ideologies and still is not resolved today because for some reason Palestinian Refugees are considered to be rather different from all other refugees by most people in the world.
This Israel/ Palestine mess started as early as 1920's. And conflict is about land, not ideologies. Refugee status for palestinians is quite same as other refugees, main difference is that it goes generations of peoples.
Basil,

Apartheid is NOT the reason why you have the issues you describe above.

Those who knowingly misuse such a word are simply playing dog-whistle politics. For more about Dog-Whistle Politics, see http://www.wisegeek.com/what-are-dog-whistle-politics.htm:

Dog-whistle politics is a form of political rhetoric in which coded language is used, thereby ensuring that a message reaches a target audience without making the general public aware of the specific content of the message. Much like a dog whistle, which is only audible to ears which can hear sounds in a certain frequency, dog-whistle politics often slides below the radar of the average citizen, allowing politicians to target certain groups of the electorate with very specific language.

Yes, some Arabs were ethnically cleansed in 1948, from what now is Israel. Is that fair? No! Is that the unjust result of a Civil War that continues today? Yes!

All Jews were ethnically cleansed in 1948 from East Jerusalem, Gaza, and the West Bank! Is that fair? No! Is that the unjust result of a Civil War that continues today? Yes!

Many people in the world have, do and will continue to suffer as a result off Civil wars. The Arab Palestinians are not unique in that respect. Is that JUST? No!

Have we discussed this before? YES!
Basil asked: "Paul, would you care to explain why the Palestinians are suffering?"

Yes! And I think that so can you Basil.

The brief and pithy answer is that:
The Civil War that started in 1947 is still going on on the West Bank. Is that good for anyone? No!
As the Aparthide wall is political term, so is ethnic cleansing and Civil War. this discussion show how this terms are used when we want to inject our interpertation of the situation and reject the other side interpertation.

I do not think it is civil war, as Israel fight as Jewish state agaist arab states and Palestinian people. israel have importance to keep Jewish majority because of reason it was created by the Jews, so we get what some call ethnic cleansing,

The Aparthide wall term is used for that reason, to inject the meaning of ethnic cleansing while doing that it create a mental wall the disable us from communicating and put us in two sides of a conflict about what it right term to use.
Lilia:

Perhaps you have been dozing for the past 61 years. We have created a Jewish State and it is called Israel.
Connie.

I did enjoy your disjointed sermon on the mount. I failed o understand your rant about evil Jews going back to the time of Moses. Thank you however for illustrating that Palestine is Jewish land since historical times.

Perhaps you can explain why you so hate the Jews as this is my perception of your ramblings, Maybe you can write a clearer and shorter version showing me where I went wrong in that thinking.
To Michael,
(I speak for Holland,)
Yes, our government is still dozing.
No bad word about Israel!
But some are awakening, (that group is growing fast) and they are astoneshed what they see.
What Israel is doing in Libanon and with the palestinians takes our breath away.
We cannot believe it.
So far outoff proportion.

We believed you.
You had no place where you could find rest.
The palestiniens let you in, and where is the graditude?
Are You greatefull, you got a place to live?
No, How can you treat the inhabitants of the country so bad.
Have not the Jew suffered in the WOII?
How can they do the same to others?
Is Hitler their teacher?

Hitler drove the jews outoff their houses and they must leave the country and he killed many of them, even the children.
Now Israel is doing the same with the palestinians.
Throwing them outoff their houses and outof the country and kil them, even the children because that are soldiers in the future.
A german child was much more worth than a Jewish child, and now a Jewish child is much more worth than a Palestine child.

Sorry, A palestine child , is as much worth than a Jewish child and as much worth as a German child.
Are we still such savages that we can not understand that?

There are international laws,
Every civilisised country respects them. Why can not Israel?

But people in the west are awakening. Stop the slaughter.! Enough is enough.
There are other ways to get to peace.
Peace for everyone.

If the guardiand agel of the Jews is Michael and the guardiand angel of the palestinians is Gabriel, Those angels are not in conflict.
So Jews and Muslim can easily live in peace together.

So I ask myself: Is there the Good Will to come to peace?
Or is it all just a game?

Where a Will to Peace is, is a way!
And there will only come peace when there is Justice done.

The Netherlands are given the Jews their houses and possessions back if they can trace them.
Jews find that Justice.
They want Justice, why cannot they understand that the Palestinans need Justice too?
Thea:

A very skewed re4ading of the situation in regards to Jews and Palestine and that is why Peace is a figment of anyone's imagination. We do not want properties back and we cannot roll back the crimes of the Europeans committed during the WW2 period and that includes the Dutch. Surprisingly some have learned nothing and continue with their attitudes towards Jews.

We do have a State and we do have an Army and we will defend ourselves against all comers.
Hi Lilia,
They (the western powers) have already created the Jewish state. The conflict now involves attempting to pave the remainder of paradise. It was nessecery to devise a systematic plan in order to set the stage step by step and creat their own narrative to go along with it rather than all at once and expose the plot in the beginning. Everyone would have walked away way back when without so much as buying a second bag of popcorn.

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