There is racism in the Holy Land, but not in Israel

The Amnesty International report accusation Israel’s apartheid regime—A preview of the potential for similar moves at the United Nations and the International Criminal Court — has been widely disclosed, including in these pages. What’s remarkable in its 200 pages of misrepresentation, however, is the evidence of truly racist-like policies that Amnesty has put in place. There are reasons to be concerned about the emergence of a apartheid regime in the Holy Land — but not those cited by Amnesty.

The defining feature of racism – what distinguishes it from general racism – is the rigid separation of groups in public spaces and positions of power. This is individual in racial segregation.

Thus, one sign of racism could be a government policy banning the sale or transaction of real estate against the opposing group. Racism is suggested by policies that create large areas where the disliked group cannot live or work, create areas of ethnic homogeneity, and limit the group that is opposed. in residential areas. It could be considered a racist regime if a government enforced extrajudicial executions against members of a hated group.

All these policies are implemented in the West Bank and Gaza – by the Palestinian government against the Jews. What makes the “Racist Israelite” meme particularly despicable is that it’s not just a lie, it’s an inversion of truth. In all areas controlled by Israel, Jews and Arabs are openly mixed. However, the Palestinian Authority for decades has ruled Gaza and about half of the West Bank — and all areas under its jurisdiction are Jewish-free.

There is not a single Jewish community living anywhere under Palestinian control. This is not due to Jewish preferences. Jewish communities exist around the world; they would certainly exist 10 minutes from Jerusalem if it weren’t for the Palestinian Authority’s policies that exclude Jews and incite violence and prejudice against them.

Palestinian law prohibits the sale of land to Jews a crime punishable by death, often without trial. The government also does not recognize any Jewish titles for private property. Last year ah Palestinian religious official said on Palestinian television that “this land is the pure right of its Muslim owners, the Palestinian people.” A senior Palestinian Authority figure said in an official publication, “Who sells real estate to the enemy. . . is considered a traitor to religion, homeland, and nation, and everyone who violates this must be punished.”

In Israel, by contrast, Arabs enjoy full court-enforced property rights against the Jews. In contrast, Amnesty argues that an example of Israel’s apartheid regime has been a series of legal proceedings in which Jewish property owners in Sheikh Jarrah .’s Jerusalem Neighborhood search (so far unsuccessful) chase the squatters who happens to be an Arab. In Amnesty’s alternate universe, Jews enforce their property rights as racist; Jews who were denied the right to own property were not. The South African government used death squads against blacks. The Palestinian government pays terrorists for killing Jews — the more people killed, the bigger the bounty. It regularly punishes a few brave Palestinians who speak out against its policies.

In all territories controlled by the Palestinian government, Jews are prohibited from worshiping in their holy sites, despite explicit provisions in the Oslo Accords requiring the Palestinian Authority to protect worship. there. When Jews wanted to visit such temples, they had to arrive at midnight under armed guard. And even in areas under Israeli control, like the Temple Mount — the holiest site for Jews — the Palestinian Authority prevents public Jewish prayer by threatening mass violence. if the Jews “contaminate” it with “dirty feet,” in the words of President Mahmoud Abbas.

All of this is part of a larger vision. The Palestinian Constitution defines Palestine as an “exclusive Arab state”, with Islam as the official religion and Arabic as the only official language. At the same time, Palestinian officials and educators deny any Jewish history or connection to Israel. On the other hand, in Israel, although it is the only country with a Jewish majority in the world, Judaism is not an official religion. Both Hebrew and Arabic enjoy official status. However, Amnesty claims that identifying only as a “national nation” of a particular ethnic group is a racist practice – but only if it happens to Israel.

Apartheid is not merely an opprobrium term, it is a crime created and defined in international treaties. Legally, while Ramallah’s treatment of Jews is discriminatory and a violation of human rights, it cannot be said that it is officially considered racist. The standard of apartheid has been set very high by the international community, so far only South Africa has been considered a clear case. But by the standards implicit in Amnesty’s report, the Palestinian government is guilty.

Mr. Kontorovich is a professor at the Scalia School of Law at George Mason University, and a scholar at the Kohelet Policy Forum, a Jerusalem think tank.

Review & Outlook: The death of Islamic State leader Abu Ibrahim al-Hashimi al-Qurayshi is a precious reminder that the threat of Islamic extremism has not gone away. Image: AFP / Getty Images / White House / Zuma Press Composite: Mark Kelly

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