Clear case of racism as Israeli PM Netanyahu calls Africans terrorists

Children of illegal African migrants eat at a kindergarten run by Eritreans in a southern district of the Israeli city of Tel Aviv on April 5, 2018. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said he was cancelling an agreement with the UN refugee agency on resettling thousands of African migrants after facing mounting pressure from his right-wing base. PHOTO | JACK GUEZ | AFP PHOTO

What you need to know:

  • Determined to rid the country of the “infiltrators” the prime minister has devised numerous schemes.

  • Last Monday afternoon Netanyahu was on television with a “final solution” scheme.

  • Netanyahu has called refugees illegal infiltrators from Africa.

Normally politically shrewd, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu last week found himself floating like a drop on a swaying arrowroot leaf.

At issue was the fate of an estimated 35,000 to 39,000 miserable souls from Africa in Israel.

They are mostly from Sudan and Eritrea.

Over the years they trekked through Egypt, across the Sinai and entered Israel.


They left behind war—the Sudanese—and the—the Eritreans, a lifetime military service, to say nothing of, to be generous, President Isayas Afewerki’s heavy-handedness.

Describe them with whichever way you want: migrants, refugees, asylum seekers, or infiltrators as the Israeli officialdom does, meaning they are unwanted.

Between 2001 and 2012, Israel constructed a fence along its border with Sinai in Egypt.

According to the Israeli newspaper Haaretz last week, the “infiltration” was near zero in 2016.

Determined to rid the country of the “infiltrators” the prime minister has devised numerous schemes. None worked.


The previous one was an April 1 to deport single men.

The High Court ordered suspension. Some Jewish organisations in the country, and especially mainstream ones in the United States, made a point: deportation will not only damage the country’s image but be detrimental to the wellbeing of Jews in other countries they call home.

Last Monday afternoon Netanyahu was on television with a “final solution” scheme.

He had struck a deal with the UN High Commissioner for Refugees.


The agency will sweet talk countries in the West to settle one and Israel will keep one over five years. “ It’s a good agreement,” Haaretz quoted Netanyahu saying. The “Chosen People” diehards struck.

On Tuesday, he suspended the deal. It’s doubtful these Africans went to Israel for the love of mostly desert. They had plenty of it back home.

Like Jews, and others have done over thousands of years, they fled inhumanity inflicted by humans. They are seeking shelter to live decently and move on.

Anyway, the hostility, and not all Israelis have that baggage, is fuelled by “We the chosen syndrome,”  Mr Netanyahu explained last month. Haaretz reported him saying in defence of the border fence:

“Attacks by terrorist groups in Sinai, and the worst: A flood of illegal infiltrators from Africa.” Note: “worst.”

And he wasn’t done.


“How could we have guaranteed a Jewish democratic state with 50,000 and after that 100,000, and it would have reached 1.5 million [illegal] immigrants.

‘‘We would have had to close the country, but we didn’t.”

If that isn’t racism, ask the Falasha, the Ethiopian people Rabbis declared Jews and the government spent millions “saving” them from “The Unchosen People”.

For the time being, Mr Netanyahu is stuck with his African “terrorists.” He’s yet to prove any of the “infiltrators” wielded a kitchen knife on entry.


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