Alicia Keys was wise to visit Israel for her July 4 concert and see the beautiful mosaic that is the people of Israel, despite calls from novelist Alice Walker and others accusing Israel of being racist and/or an apartheid state.
The notion that Israel is an apartheid state is completely absurd. In Israel, there are no laws that relegate any racial groups to second-class citizenship. Israelis — whether they are white, black, Jewish, Christian, Muslim, or anything else — have the right to vote and have freedom of speech, press, religion, etc. In fact, Israel is the only nation in the Middle East where Christians, Muslims, and Jews have complete freedom of religion.
The accusation of racism stems from the enemies of Israel, who would like to “wipe it off the map.” This can be seen even as Israel has given up territory for empty promises of peace. Although the entire Gaza Strip and large areas of the West Bank have been transferred to the Palestinian Authority, the Israeli civilian population has still been the victim of many terrorist attacks.
When considering race, it is significant to note that in the entire history of Africa, the rescue of EthiopianJews by Israel marked the only case in which white people went into Africa to bring black people to freedom, safety, and economic well-being. As a growing political force, Ethiopian-Israelis have served and are now serving in the government, from local government up to the level of nationally elected legislators.