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An Open letter to Ahmed Kathrada




Ariel Ziv writes from Israel

Mr. Kathrada,

I have rarely come across a humanitarian activist who has trashed every single niche of humanitarianism and the concept of human rights in so few sentences. I am referring to your interview on BBC.

Your personal integrity and reputation are the last of my concerns but a far more damning picture emerges from your interview. Your “wholehearted” support for whatever means the opponents of Israel choose to employ is not only the antithesis of regard for human rights; it drags your own comrade’s legacy through the bloody carnage of innocent Israeli victims of terror. The absence of an apology for terror, from the dead Mandela, is no justification for the support of it, not for you, and not to posthumously prophesize the dead man’s visions. The times, the circumstances, the histories, the locations, psyches, efforts and peoples are all very different, yet you remain bogged in the dogma of hate. It is this hate which enables you to condone the indiscriminate premeditated murder of Jews in Israel and to pass over the massacre of innocents, all for the struggle.

Many years of unjust incarceration enlightened you to support and work for justice, equality and freedom, except when it comes to the Jews, except when it comes to Israel. This is prejudice Mr. Kathrada – we know where it lies and where it leads. Yes, the struggle is not over as Mandela said, it is not over in your own backyard, first. Crime, unemployment, shacks, AIDS, murders, rapes and sewage problems in your own garden are negligible and disposable when it comes to prioritising Israel. This is prejudice too, unless you dump humanitarianism, equality and justice in preference to vilifying Israel. Mandela’s mission was a free, equal and just South Africa, yours in not.

In pre-election South Africa, the EFF (Economic Freedom FIGHTERS) perceive a ‘struggle’ too, against injustice, for equality and what not. Your message of ‘terror justifying a struggle’ will backfire and unearth those who devoted their lives for a new South Africa. Myopic tunnel vision prevents you from even considering this, let alone facing it, because it is not an Israel or Jewish question. The work of the old Mandela is far from completed, yet you have chosen to invent a new Mandela.

The semantics of “anti-Jewish” and/or “Anti-Israel” are games far removed from reality and reserved for the academia, of which you are not. Professing to be only “Anti-Israel” is a transparent wrapping which alludes to nothing. What is the collective you use -“Israel”, if not the virtual entity comprising of a large majority of Jews in their homeland? The “Israel” you refer to also comprises of Muslims, Christians, Druze, Cherkessians, Bahais and others. In referring to “Israel”, you band all these groups together, only because it would be too embarrassing to single out the Jews. These groups may be (and have been) victims of the terror you condone. Either way, by distinguishing between the Jews and others, or not, you face the dead end of ingrained hate.

Some are two-faced in rhetoric and sentiment and some are two-faced in action. You are both.

Ariel Ziv

Continue Reading


  1. Severiano

    Apr 30, 2014 at 7:30 pm

    ‘I wonder if Kathrada ever took the time to read this unless he’s not too preoccupied with the Anti-Israel agenda’

  2. Bruce Cohen

    May 1, 2014 at 5:33 am

    ‘Like most of this vermin, the first thing when an emergeny health problem occurs, he will seek the best and 9 times out of 10 it will be one of us’

  3. Louis joffe

    May 1, 2014 at 7:04 am

    ‘Ariel you have hit the nail on the head.This man is one of many who have similar opinions on Israel in South Africa.’

  4. David

    May 1, 2014 at 8:02 am

    ‘@ Bruce. More likely 10 times out of 10!

    Unfortunately, with people like Kathrada, no amount of reasoning will change their bigoted mindset.’

  5. Rugaya Jakoet

    May 1, 2014 at 3:16 pm

    ‘The state of Israel, a political entity, might be comprised of any number of cultures, many of whom do not support Zionist aggression against the Palestinians.  Trying to convince others that anti-Israeli-aggression sentiments equals anti-Jew is a cheap trick which many see through!

    Crying \”anti-semitism\” has long lost its effect.  So too will insults and fallacious arguments!’

  6. Gary Selikow

    May 2, 2014 at 1:04 pm

    Ahmed Kathrada supports {not in evidence  -ED} – he is as bad as any Nazi. 
    \nRemeber the murder {not in evidence -ED} – Kathrda supports that
    \nIn March 2008 Arab terrorists murdered eight young Jewish seminary students at study of the Torah. Shortly after this a survey by the Palestinian Center for Policy and Media Research revealed that 84% of Palestinians supported the attack!
    \nItamar Marcus of Palestinian Media Watch points out that the leaders of the propaganda for Hamas and Palestinian Authority TV (with their televised sermons, cartoons, comic books and school books) have constructed a machine to incite mass murder similar to that of the Hutu journalists who spearheaded the genocide of Tutsis in Rwanda. \”The Islamic refers to Jews as the sons of pigs and monkeys to be exterminated just as Hutu supremacists spoke of Tutsis as ‘serpents’ to be crushed.
    \nHamas and Hezbollah, two of the terorist organizations that work for the physical annihilation of Israel describe Jews as ‘pigs’, ‘cancer’. ‘garbage’,’germs’ ‘parasites’ and ‘microbes’.
    \nIranian {ex -ED-President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, in continually vowing to ‘\”wipe Israel off the map\” for which he is building a vast nuclear arsenal without the world or the Obama administration lifting a finger to stop him, uses the expression ‘dead rats’
    \nNot only do the rabid anti-Zionists who boycott and demonize Israel display gross and racist anti-Semitism , but they also responsible to a large extent for terror against Israeli women and children.
    \nThis is because Moral denigration encourages physical elimination. It is entirely in keeping in the character of Islamists or rabidly leftist anti-Zionists that they should carry a rabid hatred of Israel to the point of defending the killers of Israeli children.
    \nKathrada {not in evidence -ED} and yet because he is an ANC bigshot (who ‘fough Apartheid’)the SA Jewish establishment will continue to honour him. Thousands of Israeli Jewish men, women and children have died from bombs, bullets or knife attacks, and thousands of others have been maimed, blinded, orphaned, widowed and terrorized.


    In 2003 on the Eve of the Jewish New Year, seven month old Shaked Abraham was shot dead in her crib by an Arab murderer who forced his way into her parent’s house as the family was celebrating the New Year.
    \nA ten-month-old Jewish baby, Shalhevet Pass, was shot in her father’s arms by an Arab sniper in 2001.
    \nThe following year, a five-year-old girl, Danielle Shefi, was shot to death at point blank range by an Arab killer, while cowering under her parents’ bed.
    \nThat same year, two boys, four- and five-years old, Matan and Noam Ohayon where shot dead together with their mother as she read them a bedtime story, in a kibbutz, by Arab terrorists.
    \nIn the summer of 2005 pregnant Jewish women Tali Hatuel and her four terrified little daughters were executed at point blank range by terrorists of the Popular Resistance Committees, one after the other after Tali’s car had been spun off the road by gunfire.
    \nThen there are the thousands of suicide bombing perpetrated by Arab terrorists in malls, restaurants, schools, buses and everywhere else where Jewish men, women and children in Israel gathered.Victims were killed, burned, maimed and shards of metal infected with rat poison lodged into their bodies.
    \nUnlike a traditional war zone, the victims are often riding, sitting in schools or enjoying a meal.
    \nSo far 128 Jewish children have been killed, 9 of them less than a year old, 9 pregnant women have been murdered, 886 children have lost one parent and 31 have lost both. The youngest victim of terror was just one day old.
    \nThere has been no condemnation of these atrocities by the United Nation or it’s commissars such as Jimmy Carter, Desmond Tutu and Richard Goldstone.
    \nAt the Dolphinarium Disco on June 1, 2001, 21 Israeli teenagers were killed and 132 wounded, many maimed for life, after a suicide bomber blew himself up in their midst
    \nHamas claimed responsibility and celebrated the attack.
    \nShaina Dorfman whose grandfather was a rabbi and was burned by the Nazis in Russia, lost her only daughter in an attack on a night club in Tel Aviv but believes in the Jewish saying, Yiyhe Beseder \”Everything will turn out alright’
    \nIn Netanya in March 2001, in the single greatest massacre of Jews after World War II, 37 Jewish men, women and children died after a Hamas bomber detonated himself during a seder or celebration of the Jewish passover (Pesach)
    \nBestseling author Naomi Ragen wrote of the attack \”It seems to me to epitomize the the savagery and barbarity of our enemies who love death. They say so openly. I am not a vengeful person. but I never want to hear the word ‘peace’ again as long as I live. It has become a codeword for leaving your selves vulenrable to the attacks of your enemies, who can only be defeated by war. People forget that Israel is home to the highest number of Holocaust survivors in the world, and when terrorists target Israelis, they are targeting survivors and that is a particular obscenity. Europeans built memorial to dead victims of the Nazis but they seem perfectly OK with the idea that the living victims or their children are being terrorized and slaughtered by terrorist savages\”.
    \nEver victim of the terror attacks that since 2000 have killed thousands of Israeli has a name and a family, just as victims of the Holocaust did.

  7. fazlurrahman

    May 6, 2014 at 5:50 am

    ‘Remember  all muslims believe in the original bible and Taurah as revealed .

    It is our moral duty to stand firmly against all kinds of injustices.The lost of live irrespective of religion ,creed,or colour should be mourned, for one day we all will return back to our ONE creator to be accountable for our actions / inactions .

    The incidents of THE Cave Of Hira and incident thereafter. thereafter also prove the relation between muslims and Jews .The prophets also once stood up out of respect when a funeral of a jew passed by.

    The issue is zionism not jews .’

  8. Israeli

    May 7, 2014 at 10:30 am

    Gary, I’m not certain if you have read a book called \”A new Shoah\” by Guilo Meotti.

    It is a comprehensive account of Arab atrocities against Israelis.

  9. Gary Selikow

    May 16, 2014 at 4:32 pm

    ‘I have read it Israeli and it is brilliant’

  10. Victor Gordon

    May 21, 2014 at 4:30 pm


    You say \”The issue is Zionism, not Jews\”

    What exactly is the issue you have with Zionism? What, according to you is the very definition of Zionism?

    I’m trying to understand what the problem you and others have with it. Please help.’

  11. shlomo

    Jun 2, 2014 at 7:59 pm

    ‘Moslems posting here saying its zionism not jews that is problem. This is garbage. Israel is jewish homeland. We have nothing in common with moslem. We are neither brother nor cousin. Koran and what moslem believe is not my concern. Prophet shmophet… leave it out’

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