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Byron Shire
May 15, 2021

Israel a pariah state in global popularity stakes

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With regard to Zionism’s collaboration with anti-Semitic regimes, Lenni Brenner documents how the forerunner of Netanyahu’s Likud party wanted a ‘Jewish state on a national and totalitarian basis, bound by a treaty with the German Reich’ and offered to ‘actively take part in the war on Germany’s side’ (Zionism in the Age of the Dictators).

Sasha Polakow-Suransky says that in the 1970s a ‘small – albeit powerful and influential – minority of leading right-wing generals and politicians’, including Ariel Sharon, developed an affinity with the South African apartheid regime even to the extent of inviting in 1976, the then-South African Prime Minister and later State President B. J. Vorster,  a man detained during the Second World War for pro-Nazi activities, to the Yad Vashem Holocaust memorial in Jerusalem.

Israel collaborated with South Africa in nuclear weapons technology and sold it weapons despite the boycott. (The Unspoken Alliance: Israel’s Secret Relationship with Apartheid South Africa).

According to Ilan Pappe’s The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine did not end in 1948 but continues through its imposition of 50 discriminatory laws which treat Palestinians as second class citizens and subjects them to home confiscations and demolitions, imprisonment under military law including children as young as 13, extra-judicial executions, shoot-to-kill curfews, torture, maiming, night-time raids and settler violence.

Gareth W R Smith, Palestine Liberation Centre, Byron Bay


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  1. This is not the same comment as shown in the link on the Echo letters front page. In that Gareth Smith yet again refers to “apartheid Israel”. Plainly in Gareth’s detailed study of the Nazi regime and its relationship with the history of Likud, he learned Goebbels techniques of endlessly repeating catchy phrases regardless of their veracity, to the point that some people might believe them. Sadly for Gareth there are enough Australians who remember what apartheid actually was and who, like our’s and like-minded liberal democratic governments, where not taken in by this attempt by the Soviets and their third world friends in the UN to change the meaning of racism and apartheid so it included Israel, providing a good example of the double-speak that Orwell so entertainingly had warned us about.

  2. I feel sorry for the writer that the existence of Israel is such a source of distress. Anti-Semitism as with other prejudices are a powerful and heavy burden that the carrier bears. Clearly there are issues in this situation that need to be resolved on both sides. But the rants and references to obscure and dated information leads me to the conclusion that the driver of his myopic attitudes is not the welfare of the Palestinian people but just that Israel exists

  3. Peter and Simon do not address the facts adduced by Jewish writers Lenni Brenner, Sasha Polakow- Suransky and Ilan Pappe because they have no answers before the court of history which shows that Zionism’s core values are sympathetic to those of apartheid and its practices in Palestine overlap those of the South African white supremacists. Bishop Desmond Tuttu who lived under apartheid said, “I know firsthand that Israel has created an apartheid reality within its borders and through its occupation. The parallels to my own beloved South Africa are painfully stark indeed.
    Realistic Israeli leaders have acknowledged that Israel will either end its occupation through a one or two state solution, or live in an apartheid state in perpetuity. The latter option is unsustainable and an offense to justice. We learned in South Africa that the only way to end apartheid peacefully was to force the powerful to the table through economic pressure.”(https://www.haaretz.com/tutu-israel-is-apartheid-state-1.5252256). The sad fact is that Peter and Simon exemplify Santayana’s dictum that those who forget history are condemned to repeat it.

  4. I do not care to address the issue of Israel, Gareth – my areas of interest in history are not circumscribed by the US media.

    Santayana’s comment was “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it”. Some of us understand that Gareth, and we remember apartheid as a particular issue in a particular place, and do not care to have its place in history forgotten because the term’s meaning has been diluted by opponents of another conflict in another place .


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