Letter to Israel’s Apartheid Wall

A 2,000-word letter describing the suffering of the Palestinian people under Israel’s apartheid regime will soon be drawn along the separation wall in the occupied West bank.

"We think that we can get it done within eight full days," Justus van Oel, director of sendamessage, a Dutch website that allows people from around the world to get their message on the infamous barrier, told Haaretz on Thursday, April 16.

"It’s impossible, but it’s no reason not to do it."

The separation barrier will receive its largest piece of graffiti yet when an open letter by South African writer Farid Esack be scrawled on it starting Thursday.

The letter will be put on the eastern face of the wall by Dutch and Palestinian activists.

It will be sprayed in a single line against a white-paint background and is expected to take up over 2,500 meters of concrete beginning near Ramallah.

A documentary on writing the letter on the separation wall will be filmed by a Dutch crew.

The open letter is sprayed along with other messages the group received from contributors through the Internet.

Already some 850 graffiti messages have been spray-painted by on the wall since the group came into being in December 2007, according to van Oel.

The steel and concrete wall is snaking some 900 kilometers along the occupied West Bank, leaving larger swathes of it on the Israeli side.

The barrier leaves many Palestinian families cut off and deprived of their livelihoods.

Palestinians denounce the barrier as part of Israeli efforts to grab more of their land to undermine the viability of their promised state.

The International Court of Justice (ICJ) has issued a landmark ruling branding the wall as illegal and asking Israel to compensate affected Palestinians.

Apartheid

The Dutch group says the open letter was carefully chosen to crown their graffiti.

"We chose this letter because it holds no provocation, but is a balanced and academic text, not cheap propaganda," van Oel asserted.

In the letter, writer and political activist Esack says the situation for Palestinians is far worse than what he and other South Africans experienced under apartheid.

"I come from Apartheid South Africa," writes the man for worked with iconic South African leader Nelson Mandela.

"Craziest Apartheid zealots would never have dreamt of something as macabre as this Wall."

Esack also criticizes other brutalities of the Israeli occupation.

"In your land, we are seeing something far more brutal, relentless and inhuman than what we have ever seen under apartheid.

"The apartheid police never used kids as shields…nor did the apartheid army ever use gunships and bombs against largely civilian targets."

Esack is not the first to liken Israel practices in the occupied Palestinian territories to Apartheid.
 
Former US President Jimmy Carter, a 2002 Nobel Peace Prize laureate, make the same analogy in his 2006 book "Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid."

The Association for Civil Rights in Israel said in a recent report that Israel’s policies in the occupied West Bank are reminiscent of South Africa’s apartheid.

Van Oel, the sendmessage director, believes the open letter and other graffiti on the Israeli separation wall will send the message loud and clear.

"Apartheid can never be a long-term solution."

(IslamOnline.net and Newspapers)

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