Israel and the apartheid analogy

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Israel and the apartheid analogy is a comparison between Israel's treatment of the Palestinians and South Africa's treatment of non-whites during its apartheid era, or a comparison of the Israeli concept of Hafrada with the South African concept of Apartheid.


  • I loved South Africa, but I loathed the apartheid system. In Israel, I saw a fresh start for a people rising from the ashes of the Holocaust, a place of light and justice, as opposed to the darkness and oppression of apartheid South Africa.
    • Hirsh Goodman, New York Times, 31 January 2014
  • I was shocked to see these walls, it's a new apartheid, barbaric behavior: How can you impose such a collective punishment and separate people? After all, we are all living on the same planet. It seems to me the world should have already learned from what happened in South Africa.
  • The difference between the current Israeli situation and apartheid South Africa is emphasised at a very human level: Jewish and Arab babies are born in the same delivery room, with the same facilities, attended by the same doctors and nurses, with the mothers recovering in adjoining beds in a ward. Two years ago I had major surgery in a Jerusalem hospital: the surgeon was Jewish, the anaesthetist was Arab, the doctors and nurses who looked after me were Jews and Arabs. Jews and Arabs share meals in restaurants and travel on the same trains, buses and taxis, and visit each other’s homes. Could any of this possibly have happened under apartheid? Of course not.
  • Those who use the apartheid accusation employ the old anti-Zionist arguments. These constitute a multi-layered construct of fundamental ideological positions and analytical constructs, one of which is the purposeful displacement of the real nationalist context for historical comprehension of Zionism with the vilifying label of colonialism. Many anti-Zionists, but not necessary all of them, apply identifiable double standards of judgment to Israel traceable to the characteristic anti-Semitic premise that all things Jews do are inherently evil, including their nationalism.
  • Comparing Israel to apartheid, which most consider slander and simply part of the assault on Israel, is especially sensitive in South Africa where apartheid was born, grew and died.
    • Geoff Sifrin, Jewish Chronicle, 28 February 2014, p.36
  • It reminded me so much of what happened to us black people in South Africa. I have seen the humiliation of the Palestinians at checkpoints and roadblocks, suffering like us when young white police officers prevented us from moving about. Many South Africans are beginning to recognize the parallels to what we went through.
  • Principal human rights problems were institutional, legal, and societal discrimination against Arab citizens, Palestinian residents of the West Bank and the Gaza Strip (see annex), non-Orthodox Jews, and other religious groups.
  • Principal human rights problems related to Israeli authorities in the West Bank were reports of excessive use of force against civilians, including killings, torture of Palestinian detainees, improper use of security detention procedures, austere and overcrowded detention facilities, demolition and confiscation of Palestinian properties, limits on freedom of expression and assembly, and severe restrictions on Palestinians' internal and external freedom of movement.
  • I think my appointment is the example and answer for those who accuse Israel of being an apartheid state. It shows minorities have equal rights and we are part of the government, the state and the parliament.

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