Israel labeled 'apartheid' state for offering veterans benefits
Those who read Haaretz, which seems like a Palestinian newspaper printed in Hebrew, get to begin each morning with a dose du jour of far left propaganda.
Haaretz these days makes no attempt to disguise its contempt for Israel, nor its indifference to the risk of Israel's extermination. And as part of its jihad against Zionism and survival, Haaretz is leading the campaign to label Israel an apartheid regime.
Take the June 18, 2013 editorial, which you can read here, entitled "Another brick in Israel's apartheid wall."
If you have the stomach to wade through it, you will discover that Haaretz considers Israel to be an apartheid regime because a new bill in the Knesset is proposing improving veterans' benefits for Israelis who have served in the military. This is all part of the general jihad of the Far Left to label as "racist" any benefits granted to veterans in Israel. The far-leftist "think tank" calling itself the "Israel Democracy Institute" is also part of the Smear Israel as Racist Because of Vets Benefits campaign.
I mean, can you think of any country on the planet that does not grant veterans benefits to people who have served in the military? If that is "apartheid," then just imagine how fascistic must be the Veterans Administration and its hospitals in the US!
The problem of the Left of course stems from the fact that Arabs are not conscripted into serving in the Israeli military. Jews are conscripted, as are Druse and Circassians. Arabs can volunteer to serve in the military and some do. They are then as entitled to receiving vets benefits as any other veteran. So why exactly is this "racist"?
If there is anything "racist" in all this, it is the anti-Jewish racism of conscripting Jews for service while giving Israeli Arabs a free pass. Indeed, this also puts Jews at a disadvantage in everything else, like entering the university three years later than Arabs. When a university proposed requiring that Arab applicants to its med school first work three years in the labor force to gain life experience and so have the same age and maturity as Jewish applicants, the Left had a conniption and denounced this as racism also! In the past, Leftist NGOs demanded that Arabs who do not serve in the military be granted all the same perks granted to Jews who do serve in the military. Really.
Now let us put all of this into perspective. Israel's social security system is called the Bituach Leumi or the National Insurance Institute (NII). It was founded in 1954 as part of the Ministry of Welfare and later became a separate agency. It is the main social welfare institution in Israel and pays a modest old-age pension, child support allotments, income supplements for the poor, death allotments, stipends for the disabled and unemployed, as well as payments to divorced women who are not getting child support and to people serving in the reserves.
When it was first set up, the NII covered Israeli army veterans only. And that made perfect sense. It was regarded as a sort of veterans benefit. You did not serve in the army and are worried what will be if you hurt yourself or lose your job? Go buy yourself insurance in the private market!
It was only later that the system was changed. After an election where the Labor Party needed the ultra-Orthodox parties in its coalition, the government extended NII benefits to the ultra-Orthodox, even though they generally did not serve in the military. When the government lawyers pointed out that this would open up Israel to attacks for granting the perks to the Ultra-Orthodox but not to the Arabs (who also do not serve), the government decided to extend NII benefits to Arabs also. It was all because of its desperation to get the Jewish religious parties on board.
The result was to strip away any meaningful content to veterans benefits in Israel.
But who says it is too late to change that? Why not exclude all those who do not serve in the military, and by that I mean Arabs and the Ultra-Orthodox and drug addicts and leftist "conscientious objectors," from NII benefits altogether. They can buy their own life insurance and pensions and disability insurance in the private market. Moreover, why not establish clear affirmative action preferences in admission to universities in Israel and in hiring for those who have served in the military (or at least did non-military national service)? Give veterans preferences in everything from scholarships to dormitory space to small-business start-up grants to income-tax reductions. Arabs and ultra-Orthodox Chareidim interested in getting in on the preferences can volunteer to serve their country, and so enjoy the perks just like anyone else. Conscientious objectors can move into a monastery or cave. Drug addicts can stop taking drugs and join the army!
Now affirmative action is supposed to benefit groups who suffered from past discrimination, right? Well, Jews suffered from discrimination by Arabs in the Middle East for 1300 years. Let's start to right the wrongs! Give Jews in Israel preferences!
The anencephalic Left responds that you can't do that because the Jews are the majority in Israel and you can't give preferences to a majority.
Oh yeah? Says who? Ever heard of affirmative action for women?
Anyone reading the books by Thomas Sowell knows that all of the original affirmative action programs, those operated in Asia long before the idiotic idea was adopted in the US, were all programs to grant preferences to the majority groups (in Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia, etc. etc.) at the expense of the "over-achieving" Chinese minority. Similar affirmative action programs for the majority were operated elsewhere, from the Baltics to Africa.
So why not for Jews?