LETTER: Two apartheid states and their crises of legitimacy
The tide of international public opinion will eventually ensure a just dispensation for Palestinians
Ben Levitas will find it instructive to reflect on how and why a state would experience a crisis of legitimacy with specific reference to two apartheid states. (“Only express political opinions if they’re against Israel!”, March 10).
In 1910, when the Union of SA was established, the minority regime received international de jure recognition, but over the next decades, especially in the second half of the 20th century, the albinocracy faced a growing challenge to its legitimacy — both from within the country and from abroad. The apartheid leadership in the late 1980s saw the writing on the wall and was therefore forced to agree to negotiate for a new and democratic dispensation.
In 1948, Zionists proclaimed the settler-colonial state of Israel which too, as in the case of the Union of SA, received de jure recognition despite the fact that it was created as a result of the dispossession and mass expulsion of the indigenous population. However, Israel’s brutal occupation of the West Bank, its merciless siege of Gaza, its continued theft of Palestinian land and water resources, its settlement construction, its large-scale detention and imprisonment of Palestinians, and its practice of "incremental genocide" (a term used by a Jewish and non-Zionist academic, Ilan Pappe), continue to erode support for Israel and thus its legitimacy.
Levitas should understand that judges Siraj Desai and Dennis Davis are two among tens of thousands of human rights supporters worldwide who refuse to accept Israeli propaganda. Their numbers continue to grow and in the process Zionists will increasingly struggle to justify Israel’s inhumane policies in historical Palestine.
Notwithstanding strong US backing for Israel, a supine EU and Arab collaborators, the tide of international public opinion will eventually ensure a just dispensation for Palestinians.
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