A South African City Is about to Run Out of Water—Thanks to BDS

In 2016, a conference was scheduled to take place in South Africa regarding the looming water shortage in the southern part of the country, but agitation from the boycott, divest, and sanction movement (BDS) over the participation of the Israeli ambassador led to the conference’s cancellation. Since then the South African government has been reluctant to receive advice or aid from the Jewish state, which has shared its expertise in desalination and water conservation with numerous other countries. Now, writes Howard Feldman, residents of Cape Town expect that water in their city will be shut off in May:

Cape Town is set to be the first major [modern] city to run out of water. The city is experiencing the worst drought in its history. Residents are being asked to utilize less than 50 liters (thirteen gallons) per day, but it is unlikely that they will avoid “Day Zero,” the day the taps run dry. It is unimaginable what contingencies can be put in place to deal with the series of events that will follow that day. . . .

[In 2016], Radio Islam in South Africa celebrated the announcement [of the conference’s cancellation] by interviewing one Professor Patrick Bond, [who claimed that] what Israel has achieved [in terms of drought prevention] can be done by any child and all that Israel has done is practice “water apartheid” and steal Palestinian water. . . . He of course made no mention of desalination or the fact that Israeli cities recycle around 85 percent of their water. Nor did he mention any other achievement in Israel that has changed the ecology of the country for the better.

The fact that South Africa is experiencing one of the worst droughts in living memory, and that the situation is critical, is not a concern for those who hate Israel.

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More about: BDS, Israel & Zionism, South Africa, Water

 

Israel’s Nation-State Law and the Hysteria of the Western Media

Aug. 17 2018

Nearly a month after it was passed by the Knesset, the new Basic Law defining Israel as “the nation-state of the Jewish people” is still causing outrage in the American and European press. The attacks, however, are almost uniformly incommensurate with this largely symbolic law, whose text, in the English translation found on the Knesset website, is barely over 400 words in length. Matthew Continetti comments:

Major journalistic institutions have become so wedded to a pro-Palestinian, anti-Benjamin Netanyahu narrative, in which Israel is part of a global trend toward nationalist authoritarian populism, that they have abdicated any responsibility for presenting the news in a dispassionate and balanced manner. The shameful result of this inflammatory coverage is the normalization of anti-Israel rhetoric and policies and widening divisions between Israel and the diaspora.

For example, a July 18, 2018, article in the Los Angeles Times described the nation-state law as “granting an advantageous status to Jewish-only communities.” But that is false: the bill contained no such language. (An earlier version might have been interpreted in this way, but the provision was removed.) Yet, as I write, the Los Angeles Times has not corrected the piece that contained the error. . . .

Such through-the-looking-glass analysis riddled [the five] news articles and four op-eds the New York Times has published on the matter at the time of this writing. In these pieces, “democracy” is defined as results favored by the New York Times editorial board, and Israel’s national self-understanding as in irrevocable conflict with its democratic form of government. . . .

The truth is that democracy is thriving in Israel. . . .  The New York Times quoted Avi Shilon, a historian at Ben-Gurion University, who said [that] “Mr. Netanyahu and his colleagues are acting like we are still in the battle of 1948, or in a previous era.” Judging by the fallacious, paranoid, fevered, and at times bigoted reaction to the nation-state bill, however, Bibi may have good reason to believe that Israel is still in the battle of 1948, and still defending itself against assaults on the very idea of a Jewish state.

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More about: Israel & Zionism, Israel's Basic Law, Israeli democracy, Media, New York Times