If there’s no two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict soon, Israel risks becoming “an apartheid state,” Secretary of State John Kerry told a room of influential world leaders in a closed-door meeting Friday.
Senior American officials have rarely, if ever, used the term “apartheid” in reference to Israel, and President Obama has previously rejected the idea that the word should apply to Jewish State. Kerry’s use of the loaded term is already rankling Jewish leaders in America—and it could attract unwanted attention in Israel, as well. …
The application of the concept of ‘apartheid’ to Israel, a theme that began with the notorious Durban Conference in 2001, is one of the most offensive propaganda techniques used by Israel’s enemies to demonize it, matched only by the “Israelis are the new Nazis” one.
Apartheid, as everyone knows, is a set of laws designed to create ‘separation’ between races that existed in South Africa between 1949 and 1994. It was much more than mere racial segregation, being a complete system to ensure that blacks (and ‘coloreds’) would have inferior status in every sphere and be unable to obtain political influence. Nothing remotely like it exists in Israel (on either side of the Green Line) nor is it contemplated, even by the most right-wing members of the Knesset.
To be completely fair, apartheid is much closer to Islamic Shari’a, under which non-Muslims’ rights are severely limited. And racism more appropriately characterizes Mahmoud Abbas’ demand for a Jew-free ‘Palestine’ than Israel in any sense. But never mind, this isn’t a contest.
Kerry is alluding to the argument that if Israel annexes all of Judea and Samaria (and Gaza?), demographic considerations would lead to a loss of Israel’s Jewish majority. At that point, it’s argued that Israel would be forced to limit Arab suffrage in order to keep its character as a Jewish state.
This line has been shown over and over to be unsound. The demographic predictions are false, being based on phony Palestinian numbers and wrong assumptions about Jewish and Arab birthrates, and there are other alternatives. This has been covered in detail in numerous places, including Caroline Glick’s book The Israeli Solution: A One-State Plan for Peace in the Middle East.
But even if this is all that he had in mind, it is beyond inappropriate and offensive that the American Secretary of State would echo the most vicious anti-Zionists by using the word ‘apartheid’ in connection with Israel. Indeed, his use of it indicates that behind his ‘balanced’ rhetoric — he likes to blame ‘both sides’ — he is strongly biased against Israel.
Kerry needs to apologize (the lame attempt to minimize the damage by State Department spokesperson Jen Psaki doesn’t cut it). Or, as the Emergency Committee for Israel suggests, quit.