“WAITING”. A painting by Palestinian artist Doniana Al-Imoor, killed by Israeli shelling of her home in Gaza, August 2022 • (Courtesy of the Al-Imoor family, via +972Magazine)

Is Israel an apartheid state?

By Haggai Matar (Translated by Sol Salbe)

What are we talking about when we talk about apartheid?

Four stories from the past 24 hours:

  1. When an Arab journalist [An Israeli citizen] is murdered, and all the Minister of Communications can say for himself is that this violence proves that the Jews have no governance in the land, and that the violence may further harm the Jews.

2. When the Civil Administration [of the Territories (West Bank)], in the spirit of the “Nation-State Law”, decides to start a process to legalise dozens of illegal farm outposts, which cover vast amounts of land, and when it is clear that neither it nor any authority in Israel would think of commencing a process to regulate dozens of illegal Palestinian villages, neither in the territories nor for those who are citizens of Israel.

3. As if to prove the previous point, the Israel Lands Authority, KKL-Jewish National Fund and the police cooperate in promoting the planting of forests in order to remove Bedouin communities whom the state has forced to live in “unrecognised” settlements.

4. And when the army — which has lied for months about the shooting of journalist Shirin Abu Akleh — admits that it is “highly probable” that it was a soldier who killed her, in an inadvertent shot that hit exactly between her journalist’s protective vest and her journalist’s protective helmet, but announces that if it was a soldier it must have been by mistake and that there is no reason to even open an investigation.

When the governing reasoning of the entire political activity — whether in law enforcement, land distribution, security or anything else — is racial logic, then we are talking about apartheid.

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