Goldstone and his banning from a synagogue

goldstone.JPGWell, it’s all over the internet, that the South African Zionist Federation, and others, have heavied a ‘shul’ in Sandton, Joburg, not to let that mortal enemy of the State of Israeli, Richard Goldstone, attend his grandsons’s Barmitzvah. It makes the Australian Zionist leadership look like a bunch of pussies.
For details, it’s worth a straight link to Magnes Zionist for all the pathetic dirty detail.
But for me, whose visited South Africa 4 times now, and I’m about to go back, it is a very bitter disappointment. Some Jews were fierce opponents of the apartheid regime, as we all know, and some, were strong defenders of the old regime. Others, played it both ways (and Goldstone has been accused of not being quite the radical he has made himself out to be), but in recent years, his committment to social justice within the country and externally is well known.
But now, because of his criticism of Israeli actions in Gaza (and ahem, Hamas and others–that’s conveniently forgotten), various ZA Jewish leaders have well-remembered a classic technique under the old apartheid regime–to basically ban someone from the community, and better still, break up a happy family occasion.
Do they see the irony? Or does it reflect the peculiar insularity of many in that quite privileged community both within the country, and from the destructive politics of successive Israeli governments to the long-term health and security of the country?
The actions of the SA Zionist Federation are going to go down really well within the black community of South Africa, where there is a lot of quite scary hostility to Israel, in part due to the special relationship that existed under the Apartheid era, and in part, resentment at one of the smaller white tribes that has done very well for a long time now. Even members of the ANC political leadership have come out with the most offensive and moronic comments about Jewish control of the world, and even the generally progressive and incisive Mail and Guardian has suffered from some exceedingly low quality journalism on matters Jewish.

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