In his book Selling Apartheid, Ron Dixon writes of the world wide propaganda campaign waged by the South African Apartheid government to polish its image, much like Ben Levitas does for Israel (Cape Argus, January 27).
Levitas extols Israel’s expertise in desalination, agricultural innovation and dairy production disregarding Israel’s oppression and expulsion of Palestinians from their land and the theft of their resources. The Zionist lobby set up is a sophisticated public relations machinery that justifies Zionist crimes and to create for Israel a “brand image” completely at odds with the ugly truth.
Some categorical truths should always be borne in mind to ensure that there is no confusion between victim and victimizer:
1) Israel is illegally occupying Palestinian land
2) Occupied people have the legal right to resist occupation under international law
3) Israel is a serial violator of International Law committing crimes against humanity.
Israel uses technology as a weapon to entrench Palestinian dependence on their Israeli occupiers, in much the same way that South Africa’s Bantustans were completely dependent on the Apartheid government for it, creating huge racial disparities.
Laws governing education, training and research in apartheid SA were shaped and developed primarily for the needs and aspirations of whites, who enacted laws that served their domestic, agricultural and industrial needs.
Apartheid SA’s scientific and sporting achievements, such as Chris Barnard’s heart transplant and golfer Gary Player, were highlighted to conceal SA’s failure to implement human rights and social justice for the black majority.
SA’s propaganda machine, efficiently run for almost 50 years at a cost about $100 million annually, involved an elaborate network of supporters, including the media, business corporations, politicians and religious organisations. Despite SA’s attempt to discredit the liberation organisations, it ultimately failed to mask its inhumanity, racist oppression and crimes against humanity.
As my colleague Dr Aayesha Soni wrote: “Listing Israel’s innovations as a reason to overlook their multiple gross human rights violations is preposterous.
By that merit, Nazi Germany should not be condemned for their horrific crimes too; as was it not for them we wouldn’t be enjoying countless luxuries and advancements today. Nazi Germany was the first country to ban vivisection, (the practice of subjecting living animals to cutting operations for scientific experimentation in order to advance physiological and pathological knowledge).
Hitler also pioneered one of the most expensive and effective tobacco-banning movements throughout history.
One of the most popular vehicles in the world, Volkswagen, known for its reliability, stylish design and ease of use was engineered by the Nazi Regime, as was the popular brand Adidas.
The man who invented rockets as we know them today, Wernher Von Braun, was a member of the Nazi party, his best achievement there was undoubtedly the development of the Saturn V booster rocket that helped man to finally touch the moon, in July 1969. Von Braun officially opened the gate to space travel through his innovative inventions.
Modern medicine wouldn’t be what it is today without the contribution of Nazi doctors to the professional field. However, in the same way that Nazi Germany cannot be excused for their crimes simply because of their vast contributions to humanity, Israel’s inventions cannot be used as an excuse to deter from the fact that its governance is of a complete Apartheid style”.
Israel disingenuously markets its use of desalination plants and drip-irrigation to whitewash its human rights violation and war crimes under a tech-friendly veneer.
Levitas ignores the enormous threat of sanctions, destabilization, withdrawal of military, economic and diplomatic aid, insurgency and coups, put on some African and Arab nations if they do not establish relations with Israel. The majority of these leaders are illegitimate despots, monarchs or military men completely dependent on the USA and Israel for their survival.
The spinning of fairy tales and propagating disinformation by Levitas is very effective – up to a point. The reason why it will ultimately fail is that it has very poor material to work with. One cannot behave like psychopaths and disguise it forever.
One cannot colonise a people, steal his lands and livelihood at gunpoint, trample on their rights and freedoms, destroy their property, starve, torture, maim and murder a people for 72 years and claim the moral high ground.
The dangling of the carrot of Israeli technology has failed to dupe South Africans. The decision to withdraw its ambassador from Tel Aviv was a popular one, with a demand that there be a complete break in relations with the Apartheid Zionist entity. Further, there is a clarion call all that Palestinians be granted a visa free entry to South Africa.
South Africa’s need for technology must not be used as a marketing opportunity for Israel to whitewash its crimes against the Palestinians.
Dr Firoz Osman
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