Growing up Apartheid

This blog post is currently posted in the Times of Israel: http://blogs.timesofisrael.com/growing-up-apartheid/

To whom much is given, much is expected.  I have been extremely privileged both in my career and as an Olah to not only have the benefits afforded new Olim but also the opportunities to understand the country from a perspective that not many get to see through leadership programs and experiences. It is in this light that I feel it imperative to speak up about what it was like to grow up in the Apartheid era. The word Apartheid is very emotive and provocative. It is being used by the anti-Israel camp to call into question Israel’s right to exist as a sovereign state and this is supported by the BDS (Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions) campaign and its annual hate fest that takes place in March across university campuses around the world known as Israel Apartheid Week. By painting Israel as a pariah state in the same colours as Apartheid South Africa it seems logical that the Jewish state should receive the same treatment, right? 428131_10200223406282416_1658920060_n Wrong. Israel is not a perfect country and I would challenge anyone to find a country that is.  Racism certainly rears its ugly head in Israel just as it does in every country in the world but it certainly is NOT an Apartheid state. The singling out of the Jewish state at the expense of other countries that do have discriminatory laws not only insults the profound suffering of South Africa’s victims of Apartheid but also exposes the true nature of those who subscribe to this rationale – anti-Semitism.

The Apartheid years were deeply painful for South Africans. For many of us they are hard to talk about.  Many of us feel ashamed that we benefitted at the expense of our fellow citizens who were discriminated against and treated like they were second class. Many of us feel ashamed because we did not do enough to fight the system. I feel a responsibility to speak out about what it was like to live in Apartheid South Africa, not only to give voice to those who suffered and whose experience has been hijacked as part of a racist campaign against another nation but also for Israel, the country that has given me a lot of opportunity and is the target of such derision. I have always been a curious, politically aware person and was no different as a child. I started to ask uncomfortable questions about what I was observing around me, much to the concern of my teachers and parents. Asking too much could get you or them into real trouble! I had an idyllic childhood, living in the very liberal suburb of Yeoville in Johannesburg, in the hub of Jewish life. I also lived opposite a park and this provided me with endless opportunities for fun and observation. The same could not be said for my peers of the same age who were not white. 947342_10200223407282441_1755704238_n Children were taken to play in the park by their “nannies” (black domestic workers) who kept a careful eye on their charges. I remember asking my mother why nannies sat on the grass all the time. Didn’t they like the benches? My mother tried to explain to my childish curiosity that nannies were not allowed to sit on the benches. Or go to the same ablution facilities. I could not comprehend this. Why? What had they done that was so wrong? When I was about eight years old I made friends with Minnie. Minnie’s mother was a domestic worker and she went to school in the rural areas of the country. She was not afforded the level of education I was, being subjected to the “Bantu education laws” which ensured that South Africa’s black citizens received an inferior education. Fully equipped classrooms with text books, individual desks, electricity and extra mural sports and activities were not afforded to my peers who were not white. During the school vacations, Minnie came to stay with her mother, in her tiny room at the top of an apartment building which was where domestic workers stayed.

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I remember being warned by Enoch the doorman that being friends with Minnie could get me into serious trouble.  It wasn’t enough that Minnie couldn’t swim in the public swimming pool or come to ballet class or get the same education I did, the friendship between two little girls, barely in double digits was considered a liability. This was South Africa under Apartheid. There was no freedom of the press , no freedom of movement. It was regime where multi-racial friendships were viewed as suspicious and where grown men and women were robbed of their dignity and discriminated against. It was a regime where men and women caught without their “pass” (identity) documents or out after their curfew were rounded up by heavily armoured police vehicles. There was no freedom of association and the laws of Apartheid not only robbed non-white citizens of their civil liberties but governed every aspect of life from sexual relations to education, to ablution facilities. There was no aspect of life for a non-white citizen that was not governed by the racist Apartheid laws. Democracy was a concept only enjoyed by the minority as only white people could vote.

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Then one day Minnie stopped coming to the park during vacations. I will never know the reasons why, perhaps her mother found a new job.  I joined a Zionist youth movement and we were taught to ask questions. Our social consciousness was raised.  We started to speak out against the system. On the 17th of March 1992 a national referendum was held, calling for an end to Apartheid. South Africans voted in their numbers to finally end this hateful, racist regime. Many of the Israel detractors fail to understand that the South African solution is not one size fits all. South Africans wanted to join together while Palestinians and Israelis each have their own national aspirations. To try and enforce the South African solution on us is patronizing and belittling to both sides. The 27th of April 1994 was a profoundly emotional day. South Africans from all walks of life stood in endless lines to cast their votes. This was my first time voting and I stood in line with Johanna, our domestic worker, who couldn’t believe that finally she could vote. We both cried. I remember visuals of the elderly in rural areas, brought to polling stations in wheelbarrows, so excited they were to finally see the birth of a democratic South Africa. The post-Apartheid road has been a long and arduous one, fraught with complexities. South Africans tried to bring healing with the establishment of the Truth and Reconciliation commission where both sides could express pain or remorse. Perhaps there will come a day when Palestinians and Israelis can have their own truth and reconciliation process. It is painful but to hear each other’s experiences and acknowledge mutual pain may bring much needed healing. Israel is a vibrant and flawed democracy but is most certainly NOT an Apartheid state. Our detractors have stolen this from the victims of Apartheid – it is time we honour them by taking it back.

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I call myself Zionist

This article currently appears in the WIZO Review:

file:///C:/Users/rolene/Downloads/WIZO_REVIEW_336.pdf

Maligned and misunderstood, emotive and provocative, the word Zionism is guaranteed to elicit very strong reactions when mentioned.

In the years since its inception and the forming of the first World Zionist Congress in Basle, Switzerland in 1897, Zionism has been reinvented, reinterpreted and robust discussion has taken place over the merits and relevance of Zionism in today’s fast changing world.

The dream of a State of Israel for the Jewish people has been realized and many have debated whether or not Zionism is still relevant in our daily lives.

The most basic definition of Zionism is the yearning of the Jewish people to return to their ancient ancestral homeland, Israel. In the years that have passed since the birth of the State of Israel it would seem that Zionism is the only national liberation movement of a people that is derided and questioned.

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Legendary civil rights leader and supporter of Zionism, Rev Dr Martin Luther King

In 1975, the United Nations passed a resolution equating Zionism with racism. Even though this resolution was revoked in 1991, the damage was done. The seed was planted and the foundation was laid to portray Israel as a pariah state, equal to that of Apartheid South Africa. It became legitimate in public discourse to call Israel an Apartheid state and this really gained momentum in 2001 with the UN Conference on Racism held in Durban, South Africa.

It was here that the Boycott Divestment and Sanctions movement (BDS) really exploded in to the international consciousness. BDS activists knew that the irony and symbolism of launching at such a conference in South Africa, the home of Apartheid would give their movement the impetus they desired. Israel and the Jewish world were rudely awakened by the sophisticated organization of this campaign that included some of the worst invective since pre-war Germany and saw the birth of the international hate fest known as Israel Apartheid Week that takes place on university campuses around the world during March every year. The new anti-Semitism is wrapped up in the cloak of anti-Zionism and the central charge is Israel is an Apartheid state which must be dismantled at all costs.

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Billboards in Johannesburg, South Africa contain quotes from Nelson Mandela on Zionism

In 2014, Israel launched Operation Protective Edge in response to the barrage of rockets launched at her citizens from Gaza. Instead of empathizing with Israel’s citizens who were running to their shelters several times a day, Israel’s detractors used this as an opportunity to release some of the worst venom that sometimes culminated in violent acts against Jewish communities in their countries, giving rise to a tsunami of anti-Semitic hatred. From France to Germany, USA to South Africa, Jewish communities became targets in synagogues, schools, restaurants and across various social media platforms.

For the first time since 1945, the cry of “Jews to the gas” or ‘Jews, Hitler should have finished the job” became the rally call of the haters. Their methods are quite transparent. They wrap their “concern” for Palestinian human rights in condemnation of Israel and her Diaspora communities but it is apparent that if they cared about these rights their anger would be directed at Hamas.

It all sounds bleak and very threatening so how do we deal with threats to our identity in an increasingly hostile world?

It is my belief that if we do not stand for something, we will fall for anything. In the modern social media savvy world we too have access to all the platforms that our detractors do. We too are protected by constitutions and laws in various countries. We too, have a voice.

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WIZO protests the invitation of terrorist hijacker, Leila Khaled to South Africa by BDS

And it is a voice that deserves to be heard. We need to be heard. At every opportunity and on every platform we can. We as WIZO women, who proudly carry the word Zionism in our name are duty bound to take up this call and educate those in our Federations and communities. We need to know what the facts are, we need to be armed with the truth and we need to have courage in the face of all this to stand up for ourselves.

The best way to answer those who call for our destruction, question our legitimacy as a nation or brand us as racists is to be proud of who we are and be strong in our identity. Telling the Jewish people that they have no right to organize themselves politically and call it Zionism is racism. Telling the Jewish people that they have no right to an identity or to sit at the table with the rest of the family of nations is racism.

We are living in a time when people are fearful and this is understandable. Organisations like WIZO can help prepare and strengthen our communities. We are called to duty and to arms – armed with the truth.

This is why it is important to be armed with facts.  We cannot abdicate responsibility anymore by saying it is the work of the government or politicians. We are all responsible for each other.

As WIZO women we have the privilege of leading the charge. Not only are we grooming future leaders but we are educating our global community. Wearing our identity proudly and unapologetically in our name, we WIZO Wonder Women continue to live up to our tenet we care, we share and we dare.

Let us heed the call to arms. Let facts, truth and pride be our weapons of choice.

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Je Suis Juif. I am a Jew. 

A WIZO Woman’s right to choose

This blog currently appears in the Time of Israel:

http://blogs.timesofisrael.com/a-wizo-womans-right-to-choose/

For over 90 years, the Women’s Zionist Organisation (WIZO) has been a pioneering movement. At a time when women were not allowed to be part of the organized Zionist movement a group of feisty ladies decided that if we could not join them, we would start one of our own. And so WIZO was born. Since its inception, WIZO has been all about empowering women. We have empowered women to be suffragettes because women deserved the right to vote. Don’t we also deserve the right of choice? We hold consultative status at the United Nations on UNICEF and ECOSOC, no small feat for a Zionist organization, we hold leadership positions in major Jewish organisations and we have empowered women from minority communities, many of them victims of domestic violence to be leaders. We have created leaders, entrepreneurs and trailblazers of women’s rights.  This is in addition to the tremendous work we do to improve the lives of women and children in Israel.

WIZO is all about empowerment, including the right to make informed choices, including on issues of sexuality.

It would appear that there are some that have gotten their knickers in a knot over the screening of the movie “50 Shades of Grey” as part of a WIZO fundraiser. As WIZO women we defend your choice to see the movie. Or not.

This is a worldwide event and is happening at the request of our WIZO Aviv’s who have recognized that the movie, predicted to break box office records, will attract our target membership who are more than happy to show their support for our work while enjoying a highly anticipated chick flick. It is hardly a trip to the local strip joint or purveyor of porn. Tickets to these global fundraisers are sold out and have attracted women from all sectors of society.

If the sexual proclivities of Christian Grey are not your thing, you have a choice not to see the movie. To try and tarnish the reputation of a premier woman’s movement who does outstanding work by going to the press to create controversy is mean spirited. I assume that those casting disparity have read the books. They will also know that any sex that takes place between the characters is consensual and by a fictitious character who makes her own choices and does not propagate or endorse violence against women. The women who choose to see the movie know exactly what it is about.

As WIZO women we respect the rights of our sisters to make choices that suit their individual needs, be they religious, political, intellectual or even sexual. It is a sad day when the same respect is not afforded to us.

I agree with Laurienne Baitz, World WIZO AVIV representative. At a time when women are being persecuted in countries where they cannot show their faces, vote, own property or even drive a car, is a fundraiser based around a sexy movie really the issue we should be talking about?

Let us respect a WIZO Woman’s right to choose.

Rolene Marks

Deputy Chairperson: Organisation and Tourism Division

World WIZO

A time to scream

More than 70 years after the Holocaust, a cruel and barbaric evil has surfaced. There is no depth to their depravity and their medieval methods of torture and murder are becoming more and more atrocious. They are so depraved that not even Al Qaeda want to be associated with them. In a recent interview with members of the world’s previous first ranked terror organization, Al Qaeda terrorists described their fear of the Islamic State (Daesh).

Nobody is immune from their evil clutches, not aid workers, not journalists and not even their co-religionists. They are more sophisticated than their counterparts, understanding the power of social media and good video editing and their poster boy, Jihadi John, a citizen of the United Kingdom understands the veracity of clear communication in English. In short, they are terrifying.

The horrific irony is that these execution videos or sick snuff films are becoming recruitment calls and thousands around the world are signing up to become members of this gang of terror.

They have marched through the Middle East on their mission of mayhem, slaughtering Yazidis, crucifying Christians, including children, beheading journalists and aid workers and leaving a trail of death in their wake.

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Cartoon courtesy of RAFO

They are a dangerous enemy because they are not an army we can meet on a battlefield or easily identify. They hide, like faceless cowards behind their balaclavas and masks.

Last night they released their footage of the execution of Jordanian pilot, Moaz al-Kasasbeh. A devout Sunni Muslim, al-Kasasbeh was burnt alive while being held in a cage. I have not and don’t need to watch the footage – I can hear his screams.

No, you will not see links to the video of al-Kasasbeh’s execution here or still photography pictures. I will not be complicit in giving Daesh the media coverage they crave. Their victims die torturous deaths and the trauma for their loved ones is unimaginable.

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Vigil held for Jordanian pilot, Moaz al-Kasasbeh

Last week we commemorated 70 years since the liberation of Auschwitz and International Holocaust Day.  The tears and the painful memories which are forever embedded in our hearts and in our consciousness flowed freely.

To coincide with this, the BBC held an hour long debate on whether or not it is time to lay the Holocaust to rest. The link is included below.

This is offensive on SO many levels. Anti-Semitism is reaching alarming levels around the world and once again, Jews are fleeing Europe. Holocaust Survivor, Roman Kent’s plea “Do not let our past become our children’s future” cut to the very heart of me.  This is why we talk about the Holocaust. This is why we endeavor to educate. When we took that vow NEVER AGAIN, we promised Roman Kent, we promised our family members we lost, we promised the victims of the Holocaust we will never let it happen again. We promised future generations that we will create a better world for them.

More than 70 years after the Holocaust can we really say we learnt anything? In Rwanda and Cambodia, in the former Yugoslavia and in the Ukraine and across the Middle East, genocide and mass murder has resurfaced.

We are not dealing with the issues. We use words like “militant” or “extremist” to describe these murderous barbarians. Let us call them what they are. They are terrorists. Until we call it what it is, we will never be able to defeat them.

World leaders cannot make speeches filled with sound bites or send famed folk singers to sing kumbaya as a gesture of goodwill to the victims.

Enough is enough. We owe it to Roman Kent and the victims of the Holocaust, the Yazidis, Christians who are being slaughtered the people of Rwanda, Cambodia and other genocides to give them the voice they never had. ISIS and their ilk are the Nazis of this era and they need to be defeated for once and for all.

We cannot let NEVER AGAIN become AGAIN AND AGAIN. It is a time to scream.

Saying thank you to our soldiers with AWIS

How does one say thank you to the thousands of brave young men and women of the IDF who work night and day to ensure that we are safe and sound?

It is no secret that every Israeli regards our soldiers as our children and after a tumultuous and traumatic summer, it has become even more of an imperative to show our gratitude.

Enter AWIS. AWIS or the Association for the Well-being of Israel’s Soldiers is an international, non-profit, humanitarian organization founded by David Ben Gurion in 1942. The organization is dedicated to looking after the mental and physical well-being of Israel’s soldiers and volunteers work tirelessly to provide for Israel’s protectors.

I was absolutely delighted to join the English Speaking Branch as they spent the day dedicating several clubhouses on bases around the country.

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The first to arrive and the last to leave. This describes the Transport Corps, who keep our army moving. The men (and yes, there are women!) who are responsible for heavy vehicle transportation and for ensuring that our troops get to where they need to go. They are the unsung heroes, carrying the army on their backs. Literally! From tanks to troops, the transport corps ensures that our soldiers and heavy duty vehicles like tanks get to where they need to be safely and efficiently. AWIS volunteer,  Ian Waldbaum, pictured below, proudly dedicated the clubhouse for these hard-working troops.

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 Volunteer Ian Waldbaum inaugurates club house 

“Providing our young men and women soldiers with some form of sanctuary and sense of family, in and around the battlefield, is a crucial enterprise that requires our sustained and specific attention. Our branch was formed more than 30 years ago to raise funds dedicated to providing extra comforts, in their off duty hours,  for all our soldiers in the army, navy, air force and border police bases throughout Israel. Though the funds are solely under our administration our branch finances only projects that are requested by the IDF through AWIS Head Office,” says Chairman Cecil Shevil.

Our next stop was Kalandiya crossing and the Erez battalion. These brave men and women monitor the checkpoints between Israel and the West Bank. Often maligned by the foreign press, these courageous soldiers, often on their feet for 24 hours in a row, have stopped countless attempted terror attacks on Israeli civilians. Speaking to them and hearing their individual stories was both awe-inspiring and a reminder of the daily threats our country faces.

In excess of 5000 terror attacks have been prevented this year!

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Warning sign for Israelis

After a lunch that would have put a yiddisher mama to shame, a second clubhouse was dedicated where these soldiers could relax, play a little pool and unwind after a tense day.

The soldiers who serve in the Erez battalion are combat soldiers but they still find time to volunteer with children and Holocaust survivors and giving them a facility that will help them unwind is a great way to say thank you.

The unique essence of AWIS is the spirit of its members, volunteers and donors – providing the young men and women in the IDF with a genuine sense of care and love.

Last stop for the day was the Ordinance corps. Many of the soldiers on this base come from lower socio-economic communities.  A brand new clubhouse was dedicated and the group was warmly welcomed by the base commander who thanked the group, reiterating how a simple room to relax in goes a long way to make these soldiers feel special and appreciated. The clubhouses go a long way to uplifting their moral.

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Ordinance Corp Base Commander says thank you

Saying thank you to those who give their all for us to ensure our safety and security is priceless and the gratitude is palpable.

You can make a difference in the lives of Israel’s soldiers who are on active duty. Here is how you can contribute:

  • Annual fundraising efforts are mainly centered on the Calendar project, the 120-club Annual Draw, Gift Cards, Gift Certificates and of course, private donations in Israel and abroad.
  • The private donations are usually made to celebrate a simcha such as Bar mitzvoth, Weddings and Anniversaries (Silver, Golden and even Diamond!). On some occasions, sadly, in memory of loved ones and legacies from Estates.

100% of the donated monies are utilized for the specific project and donors are then invited to officially “open” their clubhouse together with their family and friends. Contributors are taken on trips to the bases when clubhouses are dedicated to see what is done with their contributions.  It is always an emotional occasion to witness the grateful thanks and appreciation of all the young soldiers on the base – very worthwhile as everyone comes away from these trips with a great sense of pride and pleasure for what is being provided for our boys and girls who protect us 24/7.

The funds of the English Speaking Branch of AWIS fundraising are allocated at the request of the Head Office of AWIS and we are proud to have been involved in many projects throughout our beautiful little country – furnishing and refurbishing clubhouses; equipping sports facilities; allocating funds for needy soldiers and their families at chaggim; scholarships for post-army study, etc.

For more information and donations, contact Ian Waldbaum at: ianwald@gmail.com

Swine fever!

Beware of swine flu – it seems to be a contagious disease!

Several weeks ago, members of COSAS, the Council of South African Students placed a pig’s head in what they thought was the Kosher meat section of Woolworth’s Sea Point store. Turn out in their infinite stupidity, they had placed it in the Halaal section but then again, this bunch have never been famous for their cerebral prowess.

Hate speech, much like swine flu, seems to be a contagious disease. This is a disease that is spreading like wildfire throughout the world. South Africa is not immune. Over the last few months social media sites on Facebook and Twitter have been infested with the kind of comments that would not have been out of place in Germany circa 1938 and many of the perpetrators are linked to government departments and  political parties. We have had the illustrious Rene Smit, social media manager of the ANC Western Cape branch posting “Hitler was right” and now DIRCO (Department of International Relations) employee, Rudi van Vuuren, who has enjoyed diplomatic postings to Helsinki and Damascus is the latest little piggy who is going to market.

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Cartoon courtesy of RAFO

Van Vuuren was caught tweeting this gem yesterday that appeared on the South African Friends of Palestine page:

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I know the very definition of diplomacy is telling someone to go to hell and making sure they enjoy the ride but this is beyond reprehensible. Hiding behind the excuse “well he was tweeting/commenting in his private capacity” is just not going to cut the mustard. Anti-Semitism is rising to alarming levels around the world and has arrived in South Africa. South Africa boasts a Constitution that protects the rights of minority communities and since the fall of Apartheid has been an example of conflict resolution but the lack of sanction on officials that feel like they have free reign on social media to spout their hate invective has transported the Rainbow nation back in time. It is a flagrant abuse of office to use social media platforms to bring their latent anti-Semitic tendencies to the fore.

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It seems as if it is open season to say whatever you want to against the Jewish community with very few repercussions. It is time for ordinary South Africans who are sick and tired of the Middle East taking preference over pressing issues in their country to say enough is enough. It is time for ordinary South Africans who fought long and hard to triumph over the dark past of the country to say enough is enough. Enough of the hatred. Enough of the abuse of office. Enough.

It is time for ordinary South Africans to say that the Jewish community are just as much a stripe in the Rainbow Nation as any other and any hate invective against them will not be tolerated.

This particular strain of swine flu has to be stopped from spreading at all costs before the epidemic gets out of hand and starts to manifest violent symptoms.

“We received information from an online organisation called ‘SpotlightingSA’ which combats Antisemitism and false narratives concerning Israel. Spotlighting primarily focuses on South Africa but deals with the same issues in the UK and Australia. Spotlighting is a grassroots initiative which also monitors Antisemitism and holds individuals accountable for racism, bias, bigotry and above all Antisemitism. Spotlighting is an independent organisation unaffiliated to any organisation or political agenda”.

This BDS piggy went to market…

This blog post currently appears in the Times of Israel:

http://blogs.timesofisrael.com/this-bds-piggy-went-to-market/

Someone once said don’t get in the mud with the pigs, because you both get dirty and the pig enjoys it.

It would appear as if the BDS (Boycott Divestment Sanction) movement has developed quite an appetite for pigs. While it is tempting to indulge in pig puns, this is fast becoming a very serious issue. If it is not Roger Waters flouting his helium pigs decorated with stars of David at his concerts, it is the Council of South African Students who have deemed if perfectly acceptable to place pigs heads in the meat section of Woolworths stores in South Africa.

Why Woolworths? Why pigs? Woolworths, one of South Africa’s most respected and popular brands that sells home ware, food and clothing has been the target of demonstration and boycott by BDS SA. The fact that Woolies imports from Israel amount to barely a percent is irrelevant to BDS. They have firmly locked their target on the upmarket store and demonstrations, threats against shoppers and staff and violence have become the order of the day. Nearly 60 protesters, including children were arrested for disturbing the peace two weeks ago.

The morons from COSAS who placed a pig’s head in the meat section of Woolworths’ Sea Point branch have not only offended the Jewish community but Muslims as well. The porky creature is forbidden to both religions and to Jews the image or use of a pig has been seen as a symbol of anti-Semitism since time immemorial.

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Cartoon courtesy of RAFO

Why COSAS, who quite frankly should be concentrating on their university studies are so fixated on Israel at the expense of so many problems that plague not just South Africa but the African continent is beyond me. Civil war, dire poverty, starvation and disease are all problems that plague the continent but are ignored so that anti-Semites can indulge their latent tendencies.

Policies of BDS are counter-productive to peace and the ordinary citizens of South Africa who benefit from Israeli know-how in science, medicine, technology and farming are the ones who lose.

In a recent twist of events COSAS distanced itself from the Woolworths Pig Head incident by releasing a statement that said that while they unequivocally support the Palestinian cause, they distance themselves from the incident at Woolworths Sea Point, intimating that the culprit, Siphakhamise Ngxowa, was some kind of renegade who was also making statements to the media on their behalf. They claim he has been suspended.

This is in stark contrast to the outcomes of their executive committee meeting of their Western Cape Branch where it was stated:

“Due to media frenzy, much misrepresentation and attention seeking from the paranoid racist board of White Jewish Deputies we found it necessary to elaborately address the “Stop the Pigheaded Woolworths” and the “boycott Woolworthless campaign”. In light of this we decided to dedicate much of this statement to the Palestinian solidarity campaign, to avoid further misrepresentation of our views.”

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They also claim and are quite angry that Woolworths are “covering up at least 3 other pigs head” incidents at stores.

Outcomes were as follows (courtesy Politicsweb.co.za)

  • The program of Palestinian solidarity was a provincial program and no one can be suspended for this. We have received no correspondence from NEC of COSAS and therefore dismiss claims and media comments of a suspension as unlawful, unprocedural, baseless and not communicated to Western Cape.
  • We are a militant radical organization and we therefore do not grandstand in the media, the culprits who have made these claims should step forward and identify themselves. We will not allow factional, Zionist, conservative and counter revolutionary individuals to intimidate our radical chairperson Cde Siphakamise Ngxowa.

 

  • We are an organization not some shabeen, if organizational procedures are not followed then these attempts have no legal bearing. We are well aware of the national COSAS politics at play surrounding comrade Cde Siphakamise Ngxowa and will not allow people to be suppressed because of factionalism or Zionism.

 statement

  • ON CLAIMS THAT WE HATE JEWISH PEOPLE

 

  • Pigs heads and some resources needed for this campaign have come from Jewish people.

 

  • The gathering of racist white people and armed white militia or “security of a special kind” was organized by the DA and their Israeli funders.

 

  • The illegal and unpermitted public gathering, which aimed to portray Jewish people as victims- while they still are enjoying the sweet taste of the yoke of white Aparthied privilege, is a mockery to South African black people.

 

  • The Jewish people in South Africa were with us in the struggle against Aparthied, but this racist DA group called the Jewish Board of Deputies never once through Apartheid issued a single statement to support our black people.

 

  • We love Jewish people, we love Christian people, we love Quaker people, we love Buddhist people and we even love people who do not believe in God- but we do not love racist and oppressive people.

 

  • We will write to Jewish Voices for Peace and other progressive non-racist Jewish people to explain to them our campaign.

PIgin+Woolies

It has become open season on Jews. Expressing anti-Semitism is no longer politically incorrect or intolerant in certain circles. Instead it has become almost fashionable to Jew bash.

The silence from politicians, religious leaders and human rights organisations has been deafening. Not a peep, not a squeak, not an oink.

Jewish Voices for Peace purport to stand for Jewish values of morality yet they have not made any statement on the disseminating of pigs. As far as I am concerned, this negates any moral and ethical pedestal that they have placed themselves on. They are filled with righteous indignation when it comes to Israel, preferring to compose a laundry list of accusations than address a blatant hate crime against their co-religionists.

It must be a wonderful feeling to be able to comment on events that affect the daily lives of us Israelis from the safety and comfort of a computer a continent away.

Anti-Semitism has arrived in South Africa.  Placing pig heads in supermarkets is profoundly offensive to the Jewish community. It is also offensive to Muslims but nobody has uttered a word. The “Rainbow Nation” that prides itself on racial inclusion has earned itself a very dark stripe.  The Anti-Semitic cancer that is spreading around the world has found its way to the Southern tip of Africa.

I would wait for the statements of condemnation to come rolling in but I believe that pigs will fly before this happens.

Dark days for the Beloved Country.