Racial Segregation Has No Right To Exist

From the start of an OpEd in Ha’aretz:

Many would agree with the principle that a state, whatever its name is, that practices racial segregation has no right to exist in the world with pretenses of being moral.

I can back that statement entirely! I don’t believe Saudi Arabia has a right to exist with pretences to being moral.

Saudi Arabia apartheid road sign to Mecca non Muslims

Saudi Arabia apartheid road sign to Mecca non Muslims

Israeli road sign saying no entry to Israelis (in practice Israeli Jews) at entrance to PA controlled areas

Israeli road sign saying no entry to Israelis (in practice Israeli Jews) at entrance to PA controlled areas

Or a state of Palestine either as envisioned by the current Palestinian Authority. See the sign from our very own apartheid creation: the Palestinian Authority controlled Area A.

Unfortunately the rest of the Ha’aretz piece goes on to bewail the author’s treatment as an Arab at Ben Gurion airport. At first it appears like he was going to get an easy ride through but not quite.

The following story isn’t a figment of my feverish brain. The young man who received me at Ben-Gurion Airport apparently forgot for a moment his superiors’ secret orders and acted like a human being. He looked at my Israeli passport, the only one I have, asked the usual dumb-ass questions — Where do you live? Did you pack for yourself? Did anyone give you anything? etc. I too gave for the umpteenth time the usual answers.

He tied a sticker to my suitcase and said, “Pleasant flight.” I thought, Something has indeed shifted in the rotten in the state of Israel. But that thought didn’t last long.

However, he must have said something or done something that raised an eyebrow. It is also true, unfortunately, that most of the security threat to life in Israel comes from Arabs. I’m sorry: it’s a numbers game, the vast majority of terrorists and deaths due to terror have come from Arab hands. So we’re a bit suspicious at this point.

Ten minutes later, while I stood at the airline’s check-in line, a man and woman approached me with another question: “Is the home address you gave on French Hill?” “No,” I said, explaining to them that it’s another Jerusalem neighborhood. They nodded their little heads and disappeared. Soon, they reappeared, this time with the reinforcement of a muscular man who carried himself like a senior security figure.

The muscle, named Ophir, must have thought that the leader of some terror organization had fallen into his hands and that maybe he’d get to expose him and rise in the ranks of nagging and hassling, the sacred “Jewish-democratic” work from the school of Zionism’s racists.

How long have you been living in Jerusalem? Where did you live before that? and Where are you from originally?” he asked, along with other questions.

Ophir was a young, darkish security man, perhaps a descendant of converts from the Arabian Peninsula, perhaps from the Atlas Mountains. But one thing was clear, his black color looked very shabby, tattered and stained with evil.

Bottom line, he answered questions and was allowed through. I sometimes get a ton of questions about where I grew up and how I came to be in Israel. I have to start naming the 9 children of my cousin in Safed (I must learn those damn names!). Honest Reporting is even calling this line “hate speech”.

So why is the colour of the skin of the security person of any relevance? I don’t know. I honestly wouldn’t have noticed.

Update: for some reason I thought the author was female when I first wrote this piece! I have no idea why, perhaps it’s because his complaint sounds like a whiny school girl (with apologies to all sensible school girls).

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

Facebook Comments

  • Merkaz

    I always wonder where Ha’aretz gets its funding? I suspect it is being funded by many Israel hating NGO’s.

    • Art Deco

      Nowadays, you would guess the Sorosphere.

  • dabney_c

    “The usual dumb questions” is what makes El Al the safest airline in the world. I’ve been grilled by security and had my bags combed through just because one of my suitcases had someone else’s name on it. And I’m a Jew with an Israeli passport, and fair skin and blonde hair. This despicable article makes my stomach turn.

  • LindaMarieTodd

    I couldn’t see the point in the complaint either. I was expecting him to say he’d been thrown in detention and strip searched, the way he was trying to build the drama. When his big complaint was that he’d been asked a couple of additional questions and then allowed to proceed….I wanted to sue him for the 30 seconds of my life he wasted with his whining.

    And going on about the colour of the security guy? and saying “But one thing was clear, his black color looked very shabby, tattered and stained with evil.”?? Who says that? And yet he’s trying to say he was discriminated against while using language like that?

    More cat videos would have been a better use of Ha’aretz’s space.

  • Inessa

    Recently, at a celebration concert for Yom Haatzmaut, my husband had an altercation with the security as he was going in (or trying to). My husband is from Israel and when he lived in Israel he was in charge of a security group for shopping centres and schools. He arrived early to drop off our son, who was performing. I came in with some friends, and he was coming in alone. Something about him made the security guard “profile” him (racially or otherwise. After a few reasonable questions, which he answered, the security guy started on other questions, which he wouldn’t be able to verify. My husband decided the sole purpose was to irritate him, and things came close to getting ugly. Anyway, I came outside, they let him in, but it did ruin his mood and his enjoyment of the concert was certainly diminished. He hadn’t previously encountered similar treatment, not even at Israel’s airports. My point is, I get how the author would be frustrated and would want to vent. However, it would be common knowledge that this questioning is common, but also fairly random. It is random in that some people seem always to be on the receiving end, and some not. It is humiliating, and irritating, but what it isn’t is representative of racism, or even representative of the State of Israel. There is no way the author would not know that anyone, Jew, Arab, Christian, Muslim, Russian, anyone could be subjected to this. Not everyone can be reasonably expected to understand at the time how this for the good of everyone etc. But later, once he calmed down, he would know that in fact it was personal on that day as opposed to generalised to all Muslims or all Arabs. For Haaretz to jump on this as an example of state sponsored racism is just ignorant. For them to print the author’s description of the security officer as “the muscle” and the tirade of his “dark colour being tattered and steeped in evil” – is reprehensible.

  • Inessa

    “The muscle, named Ophir, must have thought that the leader of some terror organization had fallen into his hands and that maybe he’d get to expose him” – What an ego. Not just connected to a terror organisation but a leader. With an ego like that, I wouldn’t be surprised if he actually did something to provoke the security officers as everything went too smoothly till then, and if he had continued uneventfully what would he have to write about?

Israellycool is testing Sovevos. Click for more info.