Israel’s ties with Apartheid South Africa explored in book – News


New York – Days after Israel’s supporters accused justice Richard Goldstone of complicity in the Apartheid-era judicial system, new evidence is emerging of Israel’s deep relation with the Apartheid regime. A new book to be released in May, The Unspoken Alliance: Israel’s Secret Relationship with Apartheid South Africa, by Foreign Affairs editor Sasha Polakow-Suransky, explores Israel’s ties with the white-supremacist government in the 1970s and 1980s. Earlier this week Polakow-Suransky rebutted the attacks on Goldstone, the author of a UN report that accuses Israel of war crimes in Gaza. Writing in Foreign Policy, he said Israeli government attempts to smear Goldstone over his Apartheid-era court rulings amounted to “blatant hypocrisy” based on Israel’s own links to the South African government. In the wake of the 1973 war with Syria and Egypt, Israel initiated a close relationship with South Africa, becoming the Apartheid government’s most dependable ally. The two states exchanged intelligence, nuclear technology, weapons, and political support. Reviewing the book for The Nation, Max Blumenthal wrote, “Polakow-Suransky, spent seven years on his project, conducting interviews with key players from Israel and South Africa, mining South Africa’s apartheid-era archive and resurrecting documents and articles that the Israeli Foreign Ministry would prefer remain forgotten.” “Readers of the book will learn,” Blumenthal wrote, “that while serving as Israeli defense minister, Shimon Peres nurtured his country’s diplomatic relationship with South Africa even while publicly condemning apartheid. After a secret trip to Pretoria in 1974, when Peres first proposed the alliance, he assured his South African hosts that ‘this relationship is based not only on common interests and on the determination to resist equally our enemies, but also on the unshakeable foundations of our common hatred of injustice and our refusal to submit to it.'” In an excerpt of the book that appeared on the blog Mondoweiss, Polakow-Suransky discusses a 1976 visit to Israel by South African Prime Minister Balthazar Johannes Vorster, who had been a member of a militant Afrikaner nationalist group that supported the Nazis during the second World War: Vorster was unapologetic and proudly compared his nation to Nazi Germany: “We stand for Christian Nationalism which is an ally of National Socialism . . . you can call such an anti- democratic system a dictatorship if you like,” he declared in 1942. “In Italy it is called Fascism, in Germany National Socialism and in South Africa Christian Nationalism.” As a result of their pro-Nazi activities, Vorster and van den Bergh were declared enemies of the state and detained in a government camp. Three decades later, as Vorster toured Yad Vashem, the Israeli government was still scouring the globe for former Nazis— extraditing or even kidnapping them in order to try them in Israeli courts. Yet Vorster, a man who was once a self- proclaimed Nazi supporter and who remained wedded to a policy of racial superiority, found himself in Jerusalem receiving full red-carpet treatment at the invitation of Israeli prime minister Yitzhak Rabin.via palestinenote.com

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