This Is No Annexation, This Is Apartheid: Exposing the Whitewashing of Language Surrounding the Annexation Plan

In less than a decade, the annexation of the Occupied Territories has morphed from a distorted idea upheld by the delusional fringes of Israeli society into the declared policy of the Israeli government. This shift could have serious consequences: from an escalation in the Occupied Territories to the entrenchment of an apartheid policy in the Israeli legal code, from the widespread violation of human rights to international sanctions on Israel. Nevertheless, a calculated right-wing campaign has managed to wrap the annexation in pink and rustling gift paper tissue and market it to the Israeli public as a legitimate, reasonable, and almost inevitable move.

The “Whitewashing Apartheid” report exposes the laundering process conducted by media and political stakeholders, which has played a major role in legitimizing and normalizing the idea of ​​annexation in the Israeli public discourse.

The report emphasizes the absence of the word “apartheid” from the discourse, which is why the first chapter is devoted entirely to examining this complex term. Next comes the main chapter of the report: the “Laundromat,” which lists the seven steps used by launderers of the annexation discourse. This is followed by a review of the meanings and implications of annexation, those that the launderers seek to hide through the whitewashed terminology they embed. Last but not least is a glossary, which offers a linguistic alternative for replacing the laundered annexation discourse with a language that is more accurate and true to reality.




Dr. Maha Sabbah Karkabi


Senior Lecturer in the Department of Sociology and Anthropology, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev. She holds a Ph.D. in Sociology from Tel Aviv University (2015), a postdoctoral fellowship at the Center for Gender Studies, SOAS, University of London (2015-2016), a postdoctoral fellowship in the Department of Sociology at Tel Aviv University (2016-2017), and a postdoctoral fellowship Ph.D. at the Humphrey Institute for Social Research, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev (2018-2020).
Dr. Maha Karbahi’s areas of interest focus on the connection between social change, family behavior, and gender inequality in societies in the process of change and specifically in Palestinian Arab society in Israel. Her research draws attention to the study of family life and employment, using a combined “ethnic lens” and “gender lens” and paying attention to the perspective of Palestinian Arab women, a group characterized by intersections between multiple marginal locations, which over the years has remained hidden from the research eye. Dr. Karkabi-Sabah’s research is published in professional journals and chapters in scientific books that are considered pioneers in family research, work, and gender equality.


Prof. Frances Raday

Professor Emeritus in the Lieberman Chair in Labor Law, in the Faculty of Law at the Hebrew University and serves as a full professor in the College of Management’s academic track, where she also serves as chair of the graduate program and as honorary president of the Concord Center for International Law Absorption. Radai was a member of a working group of the UN Human Rights Council on discrimination against women. In addition, she is a prominent and feminist human rights activist.


Dr. Rawia Aburabia 

Faculty member of Sapir Academic College’s School of Law, received her PhD from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Her research deals with the interface between law, gender, minorities, and human rights. Has published in leading journals on the subject of the matrimonial laws pertaining to Muslim women in Israel. Her book Under the Law, Outside Justice: Polygamy, Gendered Citizenship, and Colonialism in Israeli Law is expected to be published as part of the Gender Series of Kibbutz Meuhad Publishing House.

Dr. Aburabia has extensive experience in international human rights and public law. She has worked as a jurist for the Association for Civil Right and has been invited as a specialist to address such international forums as the United Nations and the European Parliament on the subject of indigenous communities and minority rights. She has interned with Human Rights Watch in Washington DC, and has been a member of the executive board of Amnesty International. In 2018, she was selected by the magazine Globes as one of the 40 most promising young persons in Israel under the age of 40.



Ron Kessler

With over two decades of experience in the field of digital content, Ron has participated in numerous political and social campaigns. He helped run the digital activity of senior public officials, and worked in various NGOs. Ron is a fundamentally optimistic man, who believes that Israel can be changed and so can people. Lives in Tel Aviv.