It’s that time of year again—Israel Apartheid Week. This “week” starts in Europe in February and spreads to North America in March. It’s an arm of the BDS (boycott, divestment, and sanctions against Israel) movement, which is in turn an arm of the Palestinian Authority, Hamas, and the Muslim Brotherhood.
Israel Apartheid Week is essentially an invasion of Western universities by Middle Eastern terrorism. Its aim is to abet the destruction of a country, Israel, by poisoning the minds of a whole generation against it. Its cri de coeur is “From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free.” In other words, from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea—no “two-state solution,” no compromise, no Israel.
One way to further that aim is to spread the “big lie” of Israeli “apartheid.” The Israel Apartheid Week activists know that it’s a lie, as does anyone—that is, anyone not blinded by ideological hatred—who has ever spent time in Israel. Here’s an Israeli Arab Supreme Court justice. Here’s an Israeli Arab brigadier general. Here’s an Israeli Arab leader of a parliamentary faction. Class, can you point to equivalents among blacks during apartheid South Africa?
It’s not only, though, that “apartheid” is a ludicrous lie to toss at Israel. It’s also that—as grim, hate-ridden Israel Apartheid Week plods on—Israel is increasingly a blessing not only to its Arab citizens but to the Arab world as a whole.
To start with the Israeli Arabs—as Evelyn Gordon notes, a poll in 2015 asked them:
“If you had the opportunity to become a citizen of the United States or any other Western country, would you prefer to move there or to remain in Israel?” Fully 83.4 percent said they would rather remain in Israel—virtually identical to the proportion among Israeli Jews (84.5 percent).
Israeli Arabs know, of course, that Israel gives them a level of freedom, democracy, and economic advancement that the surrounding Arab countries can hardly match. It’s very possible that if Israel had not become Israel, it would now be Southern Syria. The poll didn’t ask if Israel or Southern Syria would be a better place to live, but one can imagine where the responses would fall.
And then there are the neighboring countries, Jordan and Egypt, with which Israel has signed peace treaties. For Jordan—targeted both by ISIS and the Iranian bloc—Israel is essentially a lifeline. As Israeli military-affairs analyst Alex Fishman describes it, Jordan’s interests regarding Israel
are first and foremost security related. In the stormy sea of disintegrating nations that the Middle East has become, Israel is a ship rocking on the waves—but isn’t listing nearly as badly as the Jordanian dinghy….
Last September, Israeli and Jordanian fighter jets participated in a joint training exercise in the US with the American and Singaporean air forces, called “Red Flag.” According to military website “Foxtrot Alpha,” Israeli refueling jets helped to refuel the Jordanian fighter planes on their way to the US and back. The Jordanians did not deny this, but if this report is true, it points to a high level of cooperation between the two militaries, at a level which is not built up overnight.
Clearly, Jordan is not one of the backers of Israel Apartheid Week. Neither is Egypt. As Fishman also notes, Israel and Egypt are now conducting tight, “daily” coordination in the fight against ISIS in the Sinai and Hamas in Gaza. No one, of course, holds an “Israel, Military Ally of the Arabs” week.
Nor are Egypt and Jordan alone in this regard. Although less is known about Israel’s security ties with other Arab countries, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu recently put it this way:
Major Arab countries are changing their view of Israel …they don’t see Israel anymore as their enemy, but they see Israel as their ally, especially in the battle against militant Islam with its two fountainheads. Now, this is something that is forging new ties, many of them discreet, some of them open.
And it’s not only the security sphere. Israel, as a leading innovator in many other fields including high tech, medicine, agriculture, and energy, has a great deal to offer the Arab world—and even, potentially, Iran. As Daniel Pipes observes, of all the ways Israel can help, the most crucial may be water: “With a unique, magnificent exception, much of the Middle East is running out of water due to such maladies as population growth, short-sighted dictators, distorted economic incentives, and infrastructure-destroying warfare.”
Pipes details the dire water crises in countries like Egypt, Yemen, Syria, Iraq, and Iran, and concludes:
Israel provides the sole exception to this regional tale of woe…. [T]hanks to a combination of conservation, recycling, innovative agricultural techniques, and high-tech desalination, the country is awash in H2O…. I find particularly striking that Israel can desalinate about 17 liters of water for one U.S. penny; and that it recycles about five times more water than does second-ranked Spain.
…Desperate neighbors might think about ending their futile state of war with the world’s hydraulic superpower and instead learn from it.
The other alternative is to continue blindly in the path of hatred, war, and catastrophe—the path of Israel Apartheid Week.