LETTER: SA shows two faces on Israel
It is bullying an easy target while supporting a two-state solution
The government has said it is distancing itself from a decision by the Miss SA pageant organisers to participate in the annual Miss Universe contest due to be held next month in Israel.
The government, the ANC itself, the SACP, Africa4Palestine (read Boycott Divestment Sanctions) and other virulently anti-Israel bodies have demanded that Miss SA, Lalela Mswane, boycott the Miss Universe pageant in protest, once again, against the “heinous” state of Israel.
The Miss SA organisation, which is private, describes itself as “a powerful organisation, a leading voice on female empowerment and a launchpad for much-needed social change”. Miss SA is owned by Sun International.
Neither the ANC nor the government has the authority to determine Mswane’s attendance at Miss Universe, but the aggression and judgmental approach by which pressure is applied by opponents of Israel usually results in the participant, who is an easy target, backing down.
Like much of the Left worldwide, the ANC’s opposition to Israel is one-sided and often baseless. However, the SA government has diplomatic relations with Israel and, despite its animus, favours a two-state solution to the conflict. Yet it holds dear the shibboleths created by Israel’s enemies.
In supporting a two-state solution the government is at odds with its allies, Fatah, Hamas, BDS and all the Islamist groups ranged against Israel. The latter groups believe in a one-state solution and the eradication of the Jewish state.
The irony in all this is that the ANC’s position is likely to be a minority view among the majority of South Africans. So, once again, it is going against the beliefs of the people it purports to govern.
Institute of Race Relations
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