The rich tapestry of Israeli apartheid

The recent announcement that Palestinian communities in Israel will
be provided with a bus service for the first time since Israel’s
founding – that is, in 62 years – surprised observers who had not
realised second-class citizenship also extends to being deprived of a
bus line.

People often object to the comparison of Israel within the Green
Line to apartheid South Africa. After all, there are no segregated park
benches or buses (apart from those kosher lines that the Haredi
vigilantes patrol). True enough, but who needs to segregate buses on an
ethnic basis if they are simply not provided to Palestinian communities
in the first place?

A couple of interesting elements to this story, however, have been missed in the telling.

The first is that – assuming the new bus service actually starts, as
promised – it will be restricted to a very small number of Palestinian
towns and larger villages. How regular it will be is still far from
clear. Compare the minimal service Palestinian citizens can belatedly
expect with the service offered to Jews throughout not only Israel but
also the occupied territories.

In fact, an Egged bus line is one of the first services provided to
small Jewish settlement outposts when they are established in remote
West Bank locations. Buses arrive frequently, even though they serve a
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