Mondoweiss, August 5, 2016

Blue sky over Bethlehem
Blue sky over wall in Bethlehem


at an affluent Jewish settlement deep in Palestinian East Jerusalem that looks like a fancy development in New Jersey, there is a fine brick sidewalk. The sidewalk simply stops when the road enters the neighboring Palestinian area. Now the side of the road is dirt and trash. The settlement is served by an Israeli national bus line. The Palestinians—and mind you both groups are in “Israeli” East Jerusalem– get no such services… .

The man who showed me these apartheid conditions, Jeff Halper of the Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions, is a famously-ebullient spirit, for he can mix mirth with tragedy in the same breath. But as Halper said, the political despair is so profound here, and the polarization of Israel and Palestine so complete, that some activists seem to have abandoned the South Africa model and begun to turn in their hearts to the Algeria model: you Israelis are a bunch of colonialists who don’t belong here.