Posted by: Lister | January 22, 2007

The founders of apartheid would have been proud

They would not have been proud of these Human rights groups:

8 rights groups ask High Court to rescind West Bank driving ban

Eight human rights groups petitioned the High Court of Justice on Sunday against a military order prohibiting Israelis from driving Palestinians in private vehicles in the West Bank.

[…] Sfard said the order will “lead to a rift between Israelis and Palestinians who have legitimate social, political and commercial ties.”

The groups call the order reminiscent of apartheid, as it “implements an ideology of separation by creating criminal sanctions on different peoples.”

The title of this thread is the last line of Amira Hass’s article – “The High Court of Justice is in no hurry”

[…] Had Deputy Defense Minister Ephraim Sneh, who is shocked, shocked, by the situation in Hebron, and has come to the conclusion that the law does not operate effectively there, been interested – he could have blocked the instruction that adds another building-block to the rule of the Jewish settlers in the West Bank: Naveh’s instruction allows only Israeli employers (mainly settlers and people who live inside Israel proper) to drive their Palestinian workers. That is, it makes explicit a perception whereby the only possible natural relationship between a Palestinian and an Israeli and Jew is that of employee and employer.

[…] Had the chorus of shock at a single filmed settler woman not been a matter of “ratings,” but rather the expression of a moral stance accepted by society, the High Court of Justice would have issued an interim order to delay implementation of Naveh’s instruction. But it has not issued any such interim order, even though eight human rights organizations, represented by attorney Michael Sfard, have given it the opportunity to do so. Nor did the High Court’s Justice Edmond Levy feel any urgency about the matter, and he postponed the hearing on the petition until February 12.

[…] The new instruction is particularly efficient because it mainly endangers the Palestinians who may disobey it: For various legal reasons, it will be difficult to bring the Israelis to trial in a civilian court. The Palestinian “criminals,” however, will be shunted in and out of military courts, be blacklisted and pursued by the Shin Bet security service, and find themselves facing prison terms of up to five years. This fact will deter Israelis from choosing to practice non-violent civil disobedience, as taught by Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King, Jr., by disobeying this flagrantly illegal command. The founders of apartheid in South Africa would have been proud.

I’ll post a few articles on the ‘situation in Hebron’ in my next post.

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