Monday, March 16, 2009

Who Profit$ from Israeli Apartheid?

Want to know who Profit$ from keeping Palestinians in the Open Air Prisons that are Gaza and the West Bank?
Well, the same folks that profit from the prison industry anywhere in the world.
Please go to their website and see the list of companies for each category. If you recall, in just the last few months, 30 plus new companies directly involved in the oppression of the Palestinians have been set up and financed by USA tax dollars.

The settlement Industry:

1. Settlements' Products
Israeli industrial zones within the occupied territories hold hundreds of companies, ranging from small businesses serving the local Israeli settlers to large factories which export their products worldwide. Several settlements, especially in the Jordan Valley and the Golan Heights, produce agricultural goods, such as fruits and flowers, and sell them in Israel and abroad.Settlement production benefits from low rents, special tax incentives, lax enforcement of environmental and labor protection laws and other governmental supports. Palestinians employed in these industrial zones work under severe restrictions of movement or organization, and with hardly no governmental protections, this many times results in exploitative employment practices and labor rights violations.

2. Israeli Construction on Occupied Land
In the occupied territories, including East Jerusalem and the Golan Heights, Israeli housing and infrastructure projects effectively serve two goals: annexing more land and resources to Israel, and cutting off the local residents from the same. In the West Bank, the jurisdiction area of the settlements takes up approximately 40% of the area while the built-up area covers only 3%. The construction of an Israeli road system, the use of which is forbidden for Palestinian residents, supports the creation of a separate Jewish-Israeli space on top of the fragmented Palestinian space. The roads and the settlements thus become part of the separation system, which also includes fences, walls, gates and checkpoints. The Israeli construction industry in the West Bank and the Golan Heights includes real estate dealers and realtors, contractors, planners, and suppliers of materials, security and maintenance services to the construction sites.

3. Services to the Settlements
This section of the database includes companies that provide services to the settlements, with an emphasis on discriminatory services that are provided solely to the Jewish settlements and not to their surrounding Palestinian neighbors, services that help connect the settlements to Israel and normalize their status, and security services dedicated to keeping Palestinians out of the settlements.

Economic Exploitation:

1. Exploitation of Palestinian Labor
Israeli employers of Palestinian workers in the West Bank directly benefit from employing people under conditions of occupation. Restrictions on Palestinian movement limit the workers' employment choices, and the workers' dependency on security permits makes organizing almost impossible. Palestinian workers have no effective legal redress, and labor laws are not enforced. Kav Laoved has documented reports of companies in the Israeli industrial zones that have paid sub-standard wages, forced Palestinians to work overtime for no pay, employed workers in hazardous conditions or denied them of adequate social benefits. Of course, not all the Israeli employers of Palestinians workers would abuse the situation as severely, but all of them benefit from it nonetheless. Since Palestinian workers are effectively prevented from changing employers, organizing or suing for their rights, we would consider all such cases as cases of exploitative employment.

2. Palestinian Captive Market
This category includes companies providing services or goods to Palestinians at high costs, exploiting the restrictions on movement imposed on the Palestinians who cannot purchase these goods and services at a competitive price locally or abroad. Most Israeli retailers in the occupied territories would fall under this category. This category also includes companies using their ties to the Israeli authorities to gain commercial advantages over Palestinian companies, and companies that collect Palestinian debts using their ties to the Israeli government (for example, Palestinian import and sales tax moneys collected by Israel, were illegally retained and then used to pay various debts to Israeli companies such as the Israeli electricity company).

3. Exploitation of Occupied Production and Resources
This category includes companies that pay below market prices for Palestinian products because Palestinian producers are restricted to selling to companies that can cross Israeli checkpoints or borders. It also includes companies that use or exploit Palestinian or Syrian natural and environmental resources under the protection of the occupation. With present conditions, almost all Israeli companies buying Palestinian products or using Palestinian natural resources would fall under this definition.

Control Of Population:

1. Private Security in the Occupation
One of the fastest growing industries in Israel is that of private security. In recent years, many military responsibilities were handed over to civilian companies. Private security firms guard settlements and construction sites in the occupied territories; some are also in charge of the day-to-day operation, security and maintenance of some of the checkpoints.

2. The Wall and Checkpoints
This section of the database includes all companies involved in the planning, construction, operation and maintenance of the intricate mechanisms of physical separations and restrictions of movement. This includes businesses ranging from contractors that build the ditches, civil engineering firms that supply ready-made watch towers or raise razor wire fences, to suppliers of biometric identification systems and high-end surveillance technologies.

3. Specialized Equipment and Services
At this stage in our project, we have decided not to investigate the arms trade and supply of weapons to the Israeli army. We will focus our attention instead on civilian firms that supply the Israeli army with equipment and services specific to the needs of the military occupation. This will include, for example the specially armored D9 bulldozers supplied by Caterpillar, specially designed simulators and software, specialized anti-demonstration equipment, and services to soldiers stationed in the occupied territories.


  1. Thanks very much for visiting my blog -- I might not have discovered this extremely interesting and informative blog otherwise.

  2. Here I was in love with the facts and figures, and had forgotten you were the person who wrote very funny stuff. You're just all around good.

  3. Thanks openanthropology and right back at you! and thanks Margaret. I sure am glad I am able to laugh at my silly human behavior. It wasn't always so. I used to be quite "bound up", but since I started stumbling into things that disappointed me - like finding out people and governments lie and do things for their own selfish interests - I decided to try to develop a better counter programming ability. It's still it it's early stages, but I think in that lies happiness...and a true ability to help others.

    Perhaps I will share more humour....