One Israeli soldier who fell:
the myth of Israeli apartheid
By Lee Kaplan
Tuesday, August 8, 2006
Shimon Adega, an Israeli soldier, recently was killed fighting Hezbollah on the Northern border of Israel.
Shimon, 21, from Kiryat Gat, arrived with his parents from Ethiopia 16 years ago. His last phone call with his family was on a Saturday night, erev shabat. His brother David said, "Saturday evening he told us that they were going to Lebanon, and that he couldn't give us details. He was drafted in March of 2004 and the IDF wanted to give him a desk job but he fought to be drafted to a combat unit. He was given a month of leave and, afterwards, was drafted to the Golani division."
On US campuses today are heard accusations of "racism" and "apartheid" to smear Israel. The goal of Palestinian irredentists is to make the next generations of American students think that Israel is an apartheid state like the former South Africa. The goal is to mount a campaign of boycotts and international pressure to dismantle the Jewish state as happened to apartheid South Africa in the 1980s. What some Americans do not realize is that Israel is the only state in the Middle East that does not practice apartheid. On US campuses today are heard accusations of "racism" and "apartheid" to smear Israel. The goal of Palestinian irredentists is to make the next generations of American students think that Israel is an apartheid state like the former South Africa. The goal is to mount a campaign of boycotts and international pressure to dismantle the Jewish state as happened to apartheid South Africa in the 1980's. What some Americans do not realize is that Israel is the only state in the Middle East that does not practice apartheid.
South African apartheid was based on exclusion from equality for blacks. Israel's population of Jews contains people from around the world: blacks, Asians, Euorpeans and Middle Easterners. But Israel and the IDF are also made up of Druse, Christian Arabs and Muslim Bedouins. Arabs who do not wish to serve in the Army are not required to do so under the concept of not "takng up arms against their Arab brothers," but they may volunteer for the IDF and serve.
Shimon Adega was a black man who laid down his life for Israel and the Jewish people. And Shimon Adega was a Jew. When you walk the streets in Israel it is nearly impossible to tell who is a Jew and who is an Arab because 55% of Israelis are the same ethnicity as the Arabs. The ancestors of that 55% were refugees from Arab lands where Jews were persecuted and Jewish refugees far exceed the numbers of "Palestinian refugees" in 1948.
Many of the ancestors of these Israelis fled from Iran that now controls the attacks by Hezbollah.
On college campuses today it is also heard that Arab-Israelis are treated as "second-class" or even "third-class" citizens. This is propaganda generated by the Arab world to convince the next generations of American students that Israel is indeed an "apartheid" state. The idea is that in the style of Josef Goebbels, if the lie is repeated often enough, people will start to believe it . The fact is Israel is not a country where only Jews have rights. All minorities have equal rights like Jews by law and Israel's government is secular when it comes to these issues.
So what makes Israel a "Jewish state"? The truth is that Israel is a giant refugee camp for Jews. In this case, the refugee camp this time is armed for self-protection against its surrounding enemies.
Israel has fifteen recognized languages and allows freedom of all religions. For this very reason the worldwide headquarters of the Baha'i faith is in Haifa. Baha'is are persecuted worse than Jews in Iran, the country where the Baha'i faith was established. The Vietnamese boat people after the Vietnam War were also taken in by Israel when nobody would have them.
While it is true that Jews are granted automatic citizenship in Israel, non-Jews may apply for citzenship the same as in any other country. In fact, Israel currently has a large illegal immigrant population problem just like the US because many foreign workers, non-Jews from Third world countries, poured into Israel for jobs then did not leave. Israel, like in the US, has illegal immigrants rights groups pressing to allow such people to stay.
In contrast, the Palestinian Authority's new constitution, paid for by US tax dollars and by the Ford Foundation, is modeled after those of Saudi Arabia and Iran: Sharia or Islamic Law is the law of the land. Anyone who follows mainstream news knows the PA also insists that a Palestinian state must be Jew-free as was accomplished in Gaza. The PA only recognizes Arabic as the official language.
So the next time on campus someone says Israel is an apartheid state like South Africa and must be dismantled, remember Shimon Adega from Kiryat Gat and the sacrifice he made for the State of Israel and use that information to combat the hype. Students and scholars who educate their peers can take back their campuses with the truth.
If someone wants to fight apartheid, he or she should take a look at the 22 Arab countries that actually do practice it, and whose minorities are routinely murdered, such as is found in Sudan.
Shimon Adega would no doubt be pleased that you did.
|Lee Kaplan is an investigative journalist and a contributor to Front Page Magazine. He is also a regular columnist for the Israel National News and a senior intelligence analyst and comunications director for the Northeast Intelligence Network.|
|Lee can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org