Who's Apartheid, Israel or the Palestinian Authority?
(This is part one of three related essays) Twelve days ago, some Israel-haters at the UN wrote a report that labelled Israel an 'Apartheid' state ("UN agency labels Israel 'apartheid regime'", awdnews, March 17, 2017). That anti-Israel tactic didn't work out very well. The report was so bad it had to be pulled from its website. The UN Secretary-General ordered it removed ("UN chief orders report accusing Israel of apartheid pulled from web", timesofisrael, March 17, 2017).
If you're wondering why the UN Secretary-General would want to stop a report that labelled Israel as Apartheid, here are some facts from Israel's Ministry of Foreign Affairs. They were published last year. They're not secret. Yes, they are from the Israeli side of things. But then, these facts can be verified. They're on the internet ("Behind the facts and figures--Islam in Israel", mfa.gov.il, June 9, 2016). I have edited and added to the numbers reported below:
• Israel is home to 1,454,000 Muslim citizens who enjoy full civil liberty and political freedom (as of 2014).
• Hebrew and Arabic are the official languages of the State of Israel.
• Islam is the second biggest religion in Israel after Judaism.
• The Muslim population of Israel is not under Apartheid-like pressure that shrinks or restrains the Arab population. In fact, the Arab population in Israel has increased about ten-fold since the State was established--from some 156,000 in 1949 to over 1,454,000 today.
Muslim Population Growth
• There are over 400 mosques in Israel. Israel does not pressure Muslims in Israel to curtail the number of its mosques. Instead, the number of mosques in Israel has increased about five-fold since 1988 alone.
• Approximately 300 imams and muezzins receive salaries from the Israeli government. - Israel provides the Korans used in mosques and funds Arab schools and many Islamic schools and colleges. - Islamic schools in Israel teach Islamic studies and Arabic.
• In 2015, the Israeli government approved a 10-15 billion NIS budget (about 2.6-4 billion USD) for a five-year plan to develop the Arab sector in Israel.
• The Muslim community regulates its own unique court system and handles marriage and divorce under Islamic law.
• Muslims are highly involved in Israeli academia. 26,000 Muslim students are enrolled in Israeli academic institutions. In 2014, about 21 percent of the undergraduate students at the prestigious Technion - Israel Institute of Technology in Haifa were Arabs, up from 11 percent in 2001. This is roughly the same proportion of Arabs as in Israel's overall population of 8.3 million.
• Some Muslims also serve in the Israel Defense Forces; approximately 1,700 Muslims served in 2015, mostly from Bedouin tribes.
• Each year the Jerusalem municipality decorates the streets of the city in celebration of the Muslim holiday of Ramadan, and hosts dozens of festivities and events for the public.
• The municipality also marks the holiday with a traditional ceremony in which a shot is fired from a historical cannon in East Jerusalem each day at sunrise and sunset to mark the beginning and end of the daily fast.
• Muslim employees can take days off work during Ramadan, and working conditions are tailored to their needs while fasting during the month. The Israel Defense Forces also adjust Muslim soldiers' training regimes during the month of Ramadan.
Now, contrast these facts about Muslims in Israel with how Jews are treated in the Palestinian Authority (PA). Actually, you can't do such a comparison because the PA is, essentially, Judenrein, Jew-free. The PA's hatred of Jews is so great, it does nothing to promote the growth of any kind of Jewish presence in its midst. Compared to how Israel supports its Arab presence, the PA's support for all things Jewish is invisible. It does not exist.
The numbers below are only guesstimates. But those guesstimates tell the story of PA Apartheid against the Jews. The PA doesn't welcome Jews. It doesn't support Jewish life. It doesn't respect Jews as much as Israel respects Muslims:
-How many Jews live in the Palestinian Authority? Less than 1,000 (if that many);
-Is Hebrew an official language in the PA? No.
-How many actively-used synagogues are there in the PA? None.
-How many Rabbis receive their salaries from the PA? None.
-How many Jewish religious schools are there in the PA? None.
-How many Jewish Bibles (Tanach) does the PA provide to Jews in the PA? None.
-How many colleges and schools teach Jewish-taught Jewish studies courses? None.
-How much money has the PA dedicated to support Jewish life in the PA? Nothing.
-How many Jewish-run Jewish religious courts are there in the PA? None.
-How many Jews are enrolled in PA colleges? Practically none.
-How many Jews serve in the PA security force? None.
-How many Jewish holidays are officially marked in Ramallah? None.
Dear reader, a rogue UN body has recently attempted to get Israel labelled 'Apartheid'. It claimed that 'all its evidence' pointed to Israel being Apartheid. But these numbers regarding the PA tell very different story. It's a story of Palestinian anti-Jew Apartheid policies.
For example, between Israel and the PA, who supports religious freedom? Only Israel.
Who supports the lifestyle of the other religion? Only Israel. Who allows free access to education for people of the other religion? Only Israel.
Who allows equal access to medical care to the other religion? Only Israel. Who allows the people of the other religion to vote in elections? Only Israel. Who makes it illegal (punishable by death) to sell land to people of the other religion? Only the PA. Israel is not Apartheid. The Palestinian Authority, however, is Apartheid. So is every other Arab community in the Middle East. The UN lies when it calls Israel Apartheid.