Israel State Archives To Reveal The Truth About South African Israel Relations

Hello there, Brian of London in London (sorry I’ve not been posting, very little time).

Just as the Mandela saturation coverage reaches a climax with his burial, the following new blog post from the official blog of the State Archives of Israel caught my eye (my emphasis):

Israel and Nelson Mandela, 1962 -1965: A Call for Freedom

Following the passing of Nelson Mandela, the Israel State Archives posted a publication documenting the effort Israel made to prevent the execution of Nelson Mandela and his comrades in 1964. These individuals were tried for different charges, including forming a terrorist organization and training for terrorist acts. The Israeli Foreign Ministry, led by Golda Meir, initiated a joint manifesto by philosopher Martin Buber and writer Chaim Hazaz, calling for the release of the defendants and ending apartheid in South Africa.

This publication is the forerunner of a wider publication–part of a series on Israel’s foreign relations–on Israel’s relations with South Africa during the 1960s, which will be published on the archives’ web site in the coming weeks.

The importance of the publication on Mandela (and the larger publications following it) is challenging the mistaken and often malicious claim that Israel supported South Africa’s apartheid regime. Israel did not sympathize with apartheid and did not support it. Israel expressed its opposition to the racial discrimination in South Africa and voted against it in the UN. Israel had contacts with the African National Congress (ANC), and invited its exiled leader, Oliver Tambo, to visit Israel in 1964. Israel, as will be revealed in the documents soon to be published, recalled its Legate from South Africa (Israel didn’t have an embassy in South Africa but held a legation) at the end of 1963, and replaced him with a Chargé d’Affaires until the 1970s. All this was done in accordance with UN Resolution 1761, which called all states in the UN to break off their relations with South Africa. Israel didn’t completely end relations with South Africa out of consideration for the large and important Jewish community there.

The relations between Israel and South Africa began to warm after the Yom Kippur War. Other African states, in which Israel invested money, manpower and goodwill, broke off relations with Israel en masse during and after the war (several, especially Uganda, broke off relations already in 1972). In reaction, Israel improved its diplomatic, economic and even military relations with South Africa. Nevertheless, Israel continued opposing apartheid, but not as intensively as she did during the 60s. More on this to come

About Brian of London

Brian of London is not the messiah, he's a very naughty boy. Since making aliyah in 2009, Brian has blogged at Israellycool. Brian's interests include electric cars, world peace and an end to world hunger. Besides blogging here, Brian of London now writes at the Times of Israel. Brian of London also hosted Shire Network News

comments

  • juvanya

    Following the passing of Nelson Mandela, the Israel State Archives posted a publication documenting the effort Israel made to prevent the execution of Nelson Mandela and his comrades in 1964.

    This should surprise nobody. Israel was run by communists. Mandela was a communist. Of course theyd be allies.

    Later on, Israel was forced to ally with SA due to the abandonment by other African nations.

    • Asher

      The hell type of comment is this -_-

      • milandroid

        Agreed.
        Actually I thought back then they were socialists not communists.