On Mandela Day last week, sandwiches were made and handed out, blankets knitted and distributed and speeches given by impressive and inspiring world leaders. It is fitting then, that, on that auspicious day, I experienced what I believe was a profound ‘Mandela moment’, one that exemplified the Madiba values and spirit.
Last Monday morning started on a high note. If you were listening to SAfm’s with Sakina Kamwendo.
The discussion was “Religious Tolerance”, and the five speakers, each representing a different faith community, were in agreement:
Just one year after Penny Sparrow reached notoriety for her racist comments about beach-goers on the Durban coast, it is with a sense of déjà vu that the SA Jewish Board of Deputies (SAJBD) condemns yet another South African, Ben Sasanof, for similar offensive comments he made concerning the Durban beachfront this weekend.
Renewed public concern over racism has been one of the defining characteristics of 2016.
The South African Jewish Board of Deputies (SAJBD), the South African Zionist Federation (SAZF) and the IUA / UCF, together with the Israeli people and the broader international community, joins in mourning the passing of Shimon Peres.
On Sunday, the SAJBD Gauteng Council and the Johannesburg Holocaust & Genocide Centre (JHGC) held a joint function in memory of legendary human rights activist and Holocaust survivor Elie Wiesel.
Two days before he died, Melville Edelstein, chief Welfare officer for the West Rand Administration Board confided to his wife Rhona that anger among the black youth of Soweto over being compelled to study certain subjects in Afrikaans was reaching dangerous levels.
The responsibility of the SAJBD is to ensure that every Jewish person feels free and comfortable to be part of its events, especially Yom Hashoah, says Mary Kluk. The Sunday Independent last week carried an opinion piece on a court case that has been brought against the SA Jewish Board of Deputies (SAJBD) Cape Council concerning the question of women singing solo at the annual Yom Hashoah (Holocaust Commemoration) ceremony. The sub headline read: “Hitler killed as many females as men.”
During the first week of May, the Jewish communities of seven South African cities will come together to mark Yom Hashoah – Holocaust Remembrance Day. On this day, Jews around the world remember the six million Jewish victims of Nazi tyranny – men, women and children singled out for mass extermination for no other reason than that they were Jews. Also remembered are the millions of other innocent people who died at the hands of the Nazi regime during World War II.
Wendy Kahn writes for The Star and Pretoria News:
Earlier this year, I was privileged to spend Human Rights Day in Sharpville. On the square where the horrific massacre took place 56 years ago, I stood next to a woman by the name of Maria Morake, who was a witness to the atrocity.
“Stop the hate. The slow march towards healing.
While 2016 was still in its infancy and we were surfacing from the holiday euphoria, we got the news that has shaken our precious democracy; that racism was well and thriving in our country. Penny Sparrow
broke the bubble with her ‘monkey’ comments, followed closely by Steven Hart, Velaphi Khumalo, and Nicole de Klerk. Sadly, I suspect that by the time this is published there will be many more.
The World Conference Against Racism, held in Durban in 2001, left a psychological scar on anyone who witnessed the blatant anti-Semitism that accompanied it. But what was it like for Israel’s ambassador to South Africa at the time, Tova Herzl?
FREEDOMS bring with them obligations – not to impinge on other freedoms. It’s a lesson that has often had to be relearnt in the last 21 years as South Africans come to terms with the fantastic gift that is our constitution. We can protest, we can worship, we can think what we like, marry who we want, but we may not foment race hatred or incite war.
Charisse Zeifert writes for The Sunday Times: “Bapela guilty of a pattern of racism against SA Jews”
Kwara Kekana, spokeswoman for BDS celebrates the 10 year anniversary of BDS in her opinion piece in The Star 12/08/2015. What Ms Kekana chooses not to share is that the real outcome of their campaigns has been to foster a campaign of hatred against South African Jewry for their relationship with Israel.
What’s immoral about inviting young people to come and see Israel for themselves?
Shortly after their return from an investigative visit to Israel, ANC-affiliated members of the touring student group were subjected to an extraordinary diatribe by Obed Bapela, chairman of the ANC’s International Relations Committee.