Israel solution – a binational state or two-state divorce?

FOR years the tragic conflict between those who want Israel to be replaced by an Arab state from the Jordan to the sea; those who want a greater Israel to include the ancient sites of Judea and Samaria; those who demand that Israel retreat to the 1967 borders (which could mean giving up Jerusalem); and those who believe in the possibility of a binational solution in which all Israeli’s whether Jewish or Arab, Muslim or Christian, can live side by side, has raged on, and on and on.

The sheer complexity of the many issues surrounding the 1000-year-old conflict surrounding competing monotheisms has meant honest, open debate, has been near impossible.

Now, as Israel faces an election — with the real possibility that Likud’s Benjamin Netanyahu will be replaced by Isaac Herzog, whose center left block “Zionist Union” party along with co-leader Tzipi Livni, has emerged as a primary rival — a number of articles have appeared in the international press. Each one tackling the unthinkable: Could a binational state, or one state solution be on the cards?

For celebrated author Amos Oz, writing in Haaretz, the one-state solution presents too many difficulties. He says: “If there will be one state here, it will be an Arab state, from the sea to the Jordan River. If there will be an Arab state here, I don’t envy my children and my grandchildren.” Oz goes on to discuss binationalism.

“With the exception of Switzerland, all the existing binational and multinational states are creaking badly (Belgium, Spain) or have already collapsed into a bloodbath (Lebanon, Cyprus, Yugoslavia, the Soviet Union).”

Surprisingly, Israel’s new president, Reuven Rivlen, quoted in the New Yorker by David Remnick in a provocative article entitled “The one-state reality”, and who has long been an ardent advocate of a greater Israel that includes Jerusalem, is not adverse to a federalised “binational state plan”, since as many critics point out, “there is too much history and not enough land.”

“The map of Ireland is a veritable continent compared with Israel and the Palestinian territories,” says Rivlen “…the West Bank, as Israelis are quick to point out, is seven miles from Ben Gurion Airport. Any two-state solution with a chance of working would have to include federal arrangements not only about security but also about water, cell-phone coverage, sewage, and countless other details of a common infrastructure. Talk of a one-state solution, limited as it is, will never be serious if it is an attempt to mask annexation, expulsion, or population transfer, on one side, or the eradication of an existing nation, on the other. Israel exists; the Palestinian people exist. Neither is provisional. Within these territorial confines, two nationally distinct groups, who are divided by language, culture, and history, cannot live wholly apart or wholly together.”

For Oz, the only persons who thus agree on the need for a binational state are the far left and the far right.

The rather convoluted New Yorker article by Remnick, carries informative background to the origin of the concept of a binational state, which is also favoured by persons such as Noam Chomsky, and Peter Hain.

Martin Buber, the eponymous Jewish philosopher, he says “warned of excessive nationalism in Zionist thought and counselled against the creation of a “tiny state of Jews, completely militarized and unsustainable.”

“The idea of two states for two peoples came together in official form in 1936, when Lord Peel was charged by the British Mandate with investigating unrest between Arabs and Jews. His commission set out the initial boundaries of partition. By the time the United Nations voted in support of partition, in 1947, the binational idea, and its array of supporting factions … had dissolved. The surrounding Arab states rejected partition and invaded the new state of Israel, which emerged victorious.”

“The reappearance of a one-state discussion in Israel came out of frustration over the occupation of Gaza and the West Bank following the Six-Day War and the failures to gain an agreement with the Palestinians. Meron Benvenisti, who was the deputy mayor of Jerusalem from 1971 to 1978, years when Israel kept expanding the city, spoke out against the occupation of lands won in the 1967 war and what he saw as Israel’s broader intentions. By the early eighties, he concluded that the leaders of both Labor and Likud were complicit in the ever-widening construction of settlements throughout the territories and were making it impossible to lay any groundwork for Palestinian independence. “

With the possibility of the overthrow of the Likud party, all solutions are now on the cards, bringing fresh ideas.

Is a two-state solution in itself racist, as implied by Remnick and other critics? Is the possibility of several satellite Arab states existing inside Israel going to result in a dictatorship by far-right Jews according to Oz?

Is all of this merely the politics of “divide and rule” or a real step in the right direction?

Questions such as these are inevitable as some of the political notions that have dogged the 20th Century seem no longer to hold water in the 21st century and its version of the Middle East.

UPDATE: Response from the Jerusalem Post.

SRC politics and BDS extremists

TWO incidents involving campus politics in South Africa need some explanation.

The first involved the Durban University of Technology (DUT). Last week its SRC chair was calling for all Jews to be deregistered and in particular, those Jews who support Israel.

This week, the SRC was issuing a retraction. The announcement was shortly followed by news that members of the University of Cape Town (UCT) students council would be visiting Israel, ostensibly on a fact-finding mission.

The predictable anger from the vocal Palestinian lobby on campus looks set to disintegrate into yet another round of name-calling. So far as PSF is concerned, issues in the Middle East should not be debated, Jews must be banned or restricted from holding any opinions not authored by the BDS central committee.

It is not surprising then that some of the basic tenets associated with the campaign are falling apart, since BDS appear to be living in a Cold War time warp, cherry-picking UN resolutions to back up their arguments.

In 1975 the UN issued the infamous resolution 3379 equating Zionism with racism.

After the end of the Cold War, the same UN general assembly issued a resolution reversing the earlier resolution.

Thus in 1991 “the United Nations General Assembly voted overwhelmingly … to revoke the bitterly contested statement it approved in 1975 that said “Zionism is a form of racism and racial discrimination.”

“The official count found 111 nations in favor of repealing the statement and 25 nations, mostly Islamic and hard-line Communists, voting against. Thirteen nations abstained. Seventeen other countries, including Egypt, which recognizes Israel, and Kuwait and China, did not take part in the voting.”

The earlier 1975 resolution 3379 is the basis for several conferences in South Africa, each one arriving at the conclusion that Zionism is Racism and worse, apartheid.

The 1975 resolution is also the basis for a Human Sciences Research Council (HSRC) research paper reiterating its findings.

No resolution has ever been issued by the UN for any similar form of ethnic nationalism, for example: Kemalism.

Pig Wars, Woolworths, BDS

FIRST there were the fatwas and pronouncements by Islamic scholars on the status of Woolworths in the global BDS movement. Then well-heeled young Muslim students staged a bizarre flash-mob event, consisting of coordinated dance and movement while shouting Pro-Palestinian slogans. Then the combined sit-ins by SACP and BDS members, and now the latest round involving COSAS and a badly executed pig.

cosasAlthough Woolworths stocks less than 0.1% products sourced in Israel, the high-end retailer has come under fire by youth groups and students who wish to see Israel replaced by an Islamic republic under the Caliphate.*

The recent COSAS porker incident, (what about cruelty to animals?) involved a failed attempt to contaminate a “kosher” meat section of an outlet in Sea Point, frequented by Jews, and marks a strange new turn in the campaign.

If anything, COSAS has merely demonstrated the troublesome nature of competing dichotomies in the Middle East.

It is one thing to target so-called ‘Israel Made’ goods, it is quite another thing entirely to black-list Kosher products eaten by Jews, forcing Woolworths to also recall Halaal products. Similar dietary laws apply to both groups and many of the products affected have duel labeling.

“Woolworths is appalled by this incident. Placing a pigs head in our store is unacceptable and offensive to our employees and customers, including Jewish and Muslim employees and customers” according to Woolworths Group Director of Retail Operations Paula Disberry

“We will destroy any halaal products that may be affected and take any other appropriate measures.” she said.

The resulting misadventure, in essence the expose of the culinary habits of rival and competing religions, and the rules surrounding kashrut and halaal produce, signals a troubling escalation, and we have surely not seen the end of it — over 40 BDS members were arrested over the weekend for creating a public nuisance in a campaign endorsed by SACP Higher Education Minister Blade Nzimande and struggle luminary Denis Goldberg.

While Goldberg has criticised the SAJBD for not taking a stand on apartheid, it should be noted this position was also common to the MJC which refused to demand an inquiry into the death of Iman Haron.  Muslim support for apartheid as recorded in the TRC Final Report, is thus also part of the broader picture relating to BDS’s political project — the revision of South African history, and the relocation of apartheid to the Middle East in a short-circuiting of debate that avoids crucial questions regarding a solution.

The Woolworths ruckus may seem opportunistic and ill-considered, given that other retailers such as Pick ‘n Pay and Shoprite have more exposure to Israeli produce.

Then there are the uncomfortable questions which need to be posed regarding Israel’s many BEE deals with the ANC ruling party.

Remgro, a South African industrial conglomerate, which is also a large investor in Kagiso and Sabido, own several Israeli equity and IT firms, including Veritas Venture Partners and Fring.

Naspers which has ties with Remgro, recently bought Similarweb, an Israeli IT firm.

(*Certainly, the nuanced bipartisan and non-sectarian secular views of the late Nelson Mandela relating to a two-state solution and the 1967 borders, do not make for a pithy slogan, as those waving around the Jordanian flag and shouting: Free Palestine! The paradox of support for another Palestinian state while there is a war against a renegade Islamic State has also been remarked upon.)

Why I am not joining the March for Gaza

WHEN I joined the struggle against the apartheid regime there was never any doubt in my mind that the armed struggle was a just struggle against an oppressive state. Not only was there a Freedom Charter guaranteeing human rights for all, but our demands and that of the demands of our leaders such as Nelson Mandela were rock solid and beyond reproach.

One of the reasons I became an anarchist and non-zionist in the 1980s was the aggressive Palestinian Solidarity campaign in which the two struggles were ostensibly linked. Although Jews had made an enormous contribution to the anti-apartheid movement in particular the Treason Trial, the situation back then presented itself with many predicaments.

Nelson Mandela himself recounts his conversation with the late dictator Muammar Gaddafi, who had complained about the presence of Jews in the ANC, to which Mandela replied, ‘yes, we have Jews, … we work with Jews in our organisation.’

tonyThe absence of Jews in the Hamas organisation is telling. In South Africa, we were not simply silent partners in the liberation of our country, but active participants and in some instances, heroes. Hamas’ lame explanation that it has Jewish supporters, who like me, support rights for Palestinians, does not ring true given their absurd lack of commitment to civil rights in their own domain, for their own people in Gaza.

When people call for the death of something, such political rhetoric may be excused in the heat of the moment, a battle cry of the oppressed against the oppressor, it is quite another issue to have a vendetta in a written document, a credo enshrining death and destruction.

Hamas, far from being a noble liberation movement like the ANC, seeking the end of oppression, the end of the colonial occupation as they see it, have made it abundantly clear that their objective is the destruction of the Jews in a final battle, alongside the creation of an Islamic state on the rubble of Israel.

The movement’s ultimate goal is a theocracy under the Caliphate, in which Jews are expected to either die or conform to an Islamic version of Judaism, as Dhimmi or People of the Book.

Now while a piece entitled: ‘7 Zionist Myths’ based on work published by David Duke, an American White nationalist, writer, right-wing politician, and a former Grand Wizard of the Knights of the Ku Klux Klan, is being reposted and circulating on the Internet, (see my analysis of a similar piece by Illan Pappe and others) I am moved to write the following:

The struggle for a Jew-free Palestine must be condemned as too the struggle for a Palestinian-free Israel. The tactics of genocide and targeting of civilians by either side can never be condoned. The war being fought by adults against children in the Middle East must end.

I am an anarchist, I am also most certainly a secularist. When it comes down to being held hostage by an Islamic State vs being held hostage by a Secular State, I choose Secularism. In a battle of ideologies, I reserve my right to reject authoritarianism and fascism on either side.

As the humanitarian disaster of 40 000 members of the minority Yazidi sect who have taken refuge from ISIS on Mount Sinjar, (identified in local legend as the final resting place of Noah’s ark), plays itself out — the group face slaughter if they go down and dehydration if they stay, —  and Gazans begin to pick up their lives after the retreat of the IDF amidst the rubble of a 20 day war, and a lengthy siege surpassing the Cuban missile crisis, one can only hope and dare one say, pray for peace in the Middle East.

Peter Hain’s one-state solution

hain-mandela_2759061bBRITISH Labour MP and former cabinet minister Peter Hain says a one-state solution could “more easily resolve the deadlock than the two-state solution I and many others have long favoured”. In an article published by New Statesman, Hain says the establishment of a binational state with equal rights for Israelis and Palestinians – must now be seriously considered

“For close to seventy years the cycle of violence and hatred has ripped the region apart. Stop-start negotiations to achieve a two-state solution – an Israel with secure borders, not living under siege from its neighbours, and alongside an independent Palestine – have led nowhere, despite the fact that a majority of both peoples (Palestinian and Israeli) continue publicly to support it. ”

“I am both a longstanding supporter of the Palestinian cause and a friend of Israel.

As a British Minister for the Middle East in 1999-2001 Hain worked closely with both Israeli and Palestinian leaders.

“My record of fighting apartheid, racism and anti-Semitism is long and recognised.”

Hain is the first British figure with direct ministerial experience to argue that after decades of failure, a one-state solution to the conflict should be considered.

This comes as both Arab and Jewish Palestinians are engaged in peace talks involving the United States brokered framework agreement.

The latest proposal involves land swaps in which Israel would gain sovereignty over 70% of Jewish settlements on the West Bank in return for the resolution of the Jewish refugee land question involving 100 000 sq/km of deeded property owned by Jews which was confiscated by Arab States following Israel’s declaration of Independence in 1948 and the war which followed after these states refused to accept Israeli independence.

The talks have faltered on the issue of *Jerusalem and the extension of citizenship to some **6 million Jordanian-Palestinians living in Jordan.

NOTE: Medialternatives has already presented the case for a binational “one-state solution” also known as the three-state solution in which two states coexist within the borders of a third on the basis of a constitutional arrangement. Such a plan may involve a strong federal system as in South Africa, or a weak central government as is the case in Belgium.

* The original partition plan for “Palestine” involved the creation of a Corpus Seperatum, in which the UN declared that the city be placed under a special international regime. During the 1948 War, Jordan captured the old city of Jerusalem and the City was effectively partitioned until 1967 when Israel gained control of the West Bank and the East City. Islamic fundamentalists continue to maintain that Jerusalem should be the capital of an Islamic Empire which includes Palestine. However, there are now several such Palestinian entities, including the self-declared “State of Palestine” in the Levant. Its independence was declared on 15 November 1988 and only recognised by the UN in 2013.

**Under the Lausanne treaty following the collapse of the Ottoman Empire, a population exchange between Greece and Turkey,  occurred whereby 1.1 million Greeks left Turkey for Greece in exchange for 380,000 Muslims transferred from Greece to Turkey. Similarly, under the Belfour Declaration, population swaps occurred between the newly created state of Israel and the new state of Jordan. Because of an ongoing theological and territorial conflict amongst the Arab States, Jordan invaded Israel and occupied the West Bank until 1967.

“Ariel Sharon, Apartheid South Africa and mutual military interests” published 22/01/2014 refers”

This is a letter penned in response to a Daily Maverick piece. Needless to say it is unlikely to get published by the online daily due to editorial restrictions on the Palestine-Israel debate. DRL

Dear Ed,

Ariel Sharon, Apartheid South Africa and mutual military interests” published 22/01/2014 refers”

That Israel traded with apartheid South Africa is well known. But the extent of it, and even more the nature of it, have been shrouded in mystery and controversy until now. Your correspondents, Hennie Van Vuuren and Anine Kriegler, have provided an excellent piece relating recently declassified information on the activities of one Ariel Sharon.

As an activist on the receiving end of apartheid dirty tricks on campus during this tragic period, under the state of emergency, I rejected Zionist Israel and the Peres government. The association of PW Botha and General Magnus Malan with Israel’s defense minister Ariel Sharon was enough motivation for a course of action which resulted in solidarity with the Palestinian people and support of the struggle against Zionism.

In hindsight, and following the rise of Anti-Semitism amongst the left in South Africa, (the most recent incident involving Dubul i’Juda/Shoot the Jew refers), it is plain to see that the intricacies of the Middle East problem require a far broader view than the narrow mandate of campus politics, and thus the boundaries of this debate are under constant re-evaluation.

Prior to the Six-Day War, Israel was a darling of the international left: socialist idealists like David Ben-Gurion and Golda Meir vocally opposed apartheid and built alliances with black leaders in newly independent African nations. South Africa, for its part, was controlled by a regime of Afrikaner nationalists who had enthusiastically supported Hitler during World War II.

But after Israel’s occupation of disputed Palestinian territories in 1967, (Jordan had occupied the West Bank from 1948-1967 while Egypt had occupied the Gaza strip during the same period) the country found itself estranged from former allies and threatened anew by old enemies. As both Israel and South Africa became international pariahs, their covert military relationship blossomed: they exchanged billions of dollars’ worth of extremely sensitive material, including nuclear technology, boosting Israel’s sagging economy and strengthening the beleaguered apartheid regime.

There are no excuses for this sequence of events. However, less well-known is the manner in which Israel’s policy towards South Africa changed as a result of pressure from refusenik Jewish students, those of us who were opposed to the apartheid regime. This important part of the puzzle is often left out of the equation in a one-sided debate that is usually characterised by a lack of academic freedom. The recent problems experienced at Rhodes university and elsewhere spring to mind

It is therefore important to note that Israel and South Africa severed economic and military ties to a remarkable extant during the late 80s. Benjamin Pogrund, the deputy editor of the Rand Daily Mail has observed a number of predicaments in Israel’s position until the moment in March 1987 when the Israeli cabinet voted to “refrain from new undertakings, between Israel and South Africa, in the realm of defense.” In September of that year the Israeli cabinet issued a comprehensive sanctions package, including no new investments in South Africa and no promotion of tourism

These sanctions against the apartheid government are also recorded by the Chicago Tribune since Peres accompanied his announcement with a strong condemnation of South Africa`s racist system:

“There is no room for discrimination, whether it`s called apartheid or any other name,“ Peres said. “We repeat that we express our denunciation of the system of apartheid. The Jewish outlook is that every man was born in the image of God and created equal.“

In any debate, there are opposing sides. It is worthwhile recalling such positions and especially these prescient words, which surely have a special resonance now that the issue of South Africa’s relationship to Israel is being re-examined — If only to remind us as well as the current Likud government of our obligations and duties to the rest of the world.

Best regards

David Robert Lewis

Arthur Goldreich fingered as key Zionist Operative in Mandela Trial

arthur-goldriechTHE man believed to be the Zionist operative responsible for providing Nelson Mandela and the ANC with information regarding the use of explosives and war materiale, has been fingered as Arthur Goldreich. Goldreich was born in Johannesburg, South Africa, and settled in Israel, where he participated in the 1948 Arab-Israeli war as a member of the Palmach, the elite military wing of the Haganah.

An article published by Israel’s Haaretz newspaper alludes to a letter from a Mossad official to the foreign ministry, dated October 11, 1962 titled “THE BLACK PIMPERNEL” and released to the public on Sunday, recalls a conversation in which “we discussed a trainee in Ethiopia named David Mobasari, from Rhodesia”.

“The aforementioned was trained by the Ethiopians in Judo, sabotage and weapons,” the letter read.

“The Black Pimpernel” was the nickname given at the time to Mandela, the revered anti-apartheid hero and former ANC leader who died this month, while he was on the run from white South Africa during the liberation struggle.

It is possible but not unlikely that David Mobasari and Arthur Goldreich are one and the same person.

According to Haaretz newspaper, which first reported the story, the term “Ethiopians” was probably a code name for Israeli Mossad agents working in Ethiopia.

“He greeted our men with [Hebrew salutation] ‘Shalom’, was familiar with the problems of [Jewish diaspora] and Israel and created the impression of an educated man,” the letter read.

“The Ethiopians tried to make him a Zionist.”

According to the letter, Mandela took an interest in the methods of the Hagana and Jewish militias that existed before Israel’s creation in 1948.

The Nelson Mandela Foundation, however, said in a statement that “it has not located any evidence in Nelson Mandela’s private archive [which includes his 1962 diary and notebook] that he interacted with an Israeli operative during his tour of African countries in that year”.

SEE: http://medialternatives.com/2013/12/22/mandela-and-the-middle-east-propaganda-war/

Israel – Whose Bantustan?

ONE of the claims made by apartheid revisionists, aside from their strange assertion that apartheid is somehow a Jewish conspiracy against the world, is that the Palestinian entities in the West bank and Gaza are similar to the apartheid-era bantustans, and thus the Jews, or at least Israelis, are somehow guilty of the crime of apartheid.

In an opinion piece published by Business Day, revisionist Allister Sparks complains about “the herding of the Palestinian majority (sic) into the equivalent of noncontiguous Bantustans that can never be viable, independent states and are in effect under Israeli military control.” Aside from the fact that Non-Jews are, for all intents and purposes, a minority in Israel, the country is in itself, the result of a UN Bantustan plan in which British Mandate Palestine was divided up several times. First into two halves resulting in the creation of the Palestinian majority state of Jordan and the proposed new Jewish Homeland, then again and again, until you have the three parts which we see today which include the satellites of West Bank and Gaza.

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Jordan or Palestine? Can you tell the difference by looking at their flags?

Revisionists on the whole ignore the ongoing Jewish refugee problem created as a result of successive expulsions from the Holy land and places like Spain during the Inquisition and modern day Syria — demanding that we focus on the exclusive problems of only one group of more valued, displaced persons, and ignoring the subsequent Jewish refugee question following the two European world wars. South Africa’s own history bares testimony to the manner in which apartheid policies created by race supremacists and fascists were responsible for this refugee crisis.

On 1 May 1930. the parliament of the Union of South Africa passed an Immigration Quota Act, a law which was introduced into the house by the then Minister of the Interior, D F. Malan. The law effectively curtailed Jewish immigration to South Africa from Eastern Europe.

While boatloads of German Jews fleeing the Nazis were being turned back and Malan (still leader of the opposition) was openly supporting Adolf Hitler’s brown shirts, South Africa entered World War II on the side of the colonial powers which were responsible for the failed UN-sponsored Middle East partition plan. The tragic story of the voyage of the St. Louis. a German ocean liner most notable for an ill-fated journey in 1939, in which her captain, Gustav Schröder, tried to find homes for 937 German Jewish refugees is the subject of a well-known 1974 book called Voyage of the Damned.

Denied entry to Cuba, the United States as well as Canada, these refugees were finally accepted to various countries of Europe. Historians have estimated that, after their return to Europe, approximately a quarter of the ship’s passengers died in concentration camps.

After the war, South Africa embarked on its own tragic journey to D F Malan’s apartheid government. It is not insignificant that apartheid was introduced in the same year that Israel like the later Transkei, gained its independence from the Western powers. Several conferences on the Jewish refugee problem, most notably the Bermuda Conference and Evian Conference failed to resolve the problem of Jewish refugees, a fact widely used in Nazi propaganda.

Following the UN partition plan Jews were forcibly expelled from the Arab States and North Africa. Some 850 000 Jews lost their homes and property and were forced to flee to the new state of Israel, while some 472 000 Arabs*  were forced into the neighbouring Arab states and Jordan. The refugee problem remains with us today, along with the land question, as these states still refuse to return 100 000 square km of deeded property, land once owned by Arab Jews, and ancient Aramaic communities in Syria face renewed bombardment by missiles.

NOTE:  Arabs claim that 800,000 to 1,000,000 Palestinians became refugees in 1947-49. The last census was taken in 1945. It found only 756,000 permanent Arab residents in Israel. On November 30, 1947, the date the UN voted for partition, the total was 809,100. A 1949 Government of Israel census counted 160,000 Arabs living in the country after the war. This meant that no more than 650,000 Palestinian Arabs could have become refugees. A report by the UN Mediator on Palestine arrived at an even lower figure – 472,000.

Alister Sparks, bigot-in-chief

Ignored Syrian War

THE latest revision of apartheid history by veteran journalist Allister Sparks, in effect claiming that apartheid is an Israeli invention, and merely one of the Jewish state’s policies alongside the Land Act and Group Areas Act certainly takes the cake so far as mendacity and propaganda is concerned.

Sparks, forever the judeophobe, in his recent opinion piece published by Business Day, excludes black Jews from the equation, alongside Jewish refugees from Africa and the Middle East in order to paint a picture of a nationalist struggle not so different from our own. A struggle, one might add, that lacks a freedom charter, cannot and never will be, a freedom struggle. However much one sides with the current halo around all things Palestinian,  the problem of divergent and complex interests tied to factions within Islam and Christianity remains. 

Despite the religious indictment  there are some very good reasons why a Palestinian state should exist. All those in favour of self-determination for Palestinians say aye, myself included. But this kind of blanket, no strings attached support does not solve the ongoing factional violence which culminated in last week’s threat to exterminate the state of Israel along with its Palestinian population using Vx gas and other chemical weapons. Instead of blaming Assad or the rebels, Sparks would like to blame Israel and the USA. He would be better off advocating for a Bill of Rights for the Palestinian people and a Chemical Weapons Convention. 

Another strategy is to blame the world’s Jews for all manner of problems in the hope that by doing so, the masses on the ground (including Jews) will either forget about the past or find cause to live out the past vicariously, within changed or altered circumstances. One is reminded of the quote by Franz Fanon: “It was my philosophy teacher from the Antilles who reminded me one day: “When you hear someone insulting the Jews pay attention; he is talking about you.” 

The openly biased counter-accusation by Sparks of Israeli ethnic cleansing in 1948 in the ongoing guilt trip against anything Jewish really jars in its lack of relevance today, especially the problem of a new Cold War. But this is really just the stock in trade of a true Anti-Semite. Invitation accepted. Sparks is demonstrably in favour of a world without Jews, for if Jews have cause to blame the Holocaust for all their troubles, then it must take some plot by the devil himself to create a situation in which neighbouring Syrian Sunnis are being massacred in conditions similar to the First and Second World Wars and to avoid writing about it.

No longer are we able to say shame and Xyklon B in the same sentence, and still be Jewish, because now we have a Sarin Gas nightmare, a blot against the global and collective memory of our species. Never again, as I have said so many times before means, never again for everyone including Syrians.

The problem of a Jewish State which only accepts Jewish refugees alongside the tragedy of millions of Syrian refugees creating an international crisis in humanitarian aid is not solved by the man’s absurd claims to be in favour of the audi rule, but only if it is to hear one side of the debate, since very rarely if ever are black Jews living in South Africa given an opportunity to state their case in a country which refuses to recognize divergence of opinion within the community and Jewish cultural and political rights in particular.

Sparks and his futile and ignorant onslaught against all Jewish people living in South Africa must therefore be rejected as nothing more than a propagandist whose thinly veiled attack against diplomatic peace efforts, are in effect evidence of hate speech, bigoted opinion which avoids the very real threat of chemical warfare being unleashed on the self-same group of people he claims to be supporting.