I respectfully suggest that David Saks of the SA Jewish Board of Deputies checks his facts before he rushes into print that Israel’s Ethiopian Jewish community is an example that rebuts the reality that Israel is a racist and apartheid state (Letters, June 11 “Calling Israel an apartheid state is sheer absurdity.”)

True, the Israeli government transported about 90,000 Ethiopian Jews to Israel during the 1980s and 1990s — albeit as cannon fodder for the army and cheap labour. 

Even Israeli President Reuvin Rivlin acknowledges that 30 years later, Israel has failed dismally in absorbing the community that is repeatedly victimised by racism,  whose “Jewishness” is questioned and which is economically marginalised.  Ethiopian Israelis until recently were even unacceptable as blood donors. Israel’s barbaric treatment of other non-Jewish African refugees is also well documented.

The Times of Israel reported just last week that a 76-page British government review on democracy and human rights has accused both Israel and Palestine of human rights abuses, and notes that “Israel continued its systematic policy of settlement expansion in breach of international law.” In addition, the British review ranks Israel and the Palestinian Authority alongside Bangladesh, Myanmar, Eritrea, Iran, Russia, Somalia, Zimbabwe, Yemen and Saudi Arabia among the worst countries  in the world in terms of human rights records.

Terry Crawford-Browne
Palestine Solidarity Campaign