Existential threat or existential need?
Photo: Tsafrir Abayov

Our African workforce

Op-ed: African migrants are no threat; we let them in so they can do our dirty work

The refugees and work migrants who pour into Israel from Africa do not constitute an existential threat for the country. How do I know this? I use the simplest form of common sense: Had it been an existential threat, the government would have resorted to a great, multipronged effort to defend against it. Indeed, our officials would operate both on the security and diplomatic front, day and night, exactly as they do in respect to the Iranian nuclear program.


Yet the government makes almost no genuine effort to prevent thousands of Africans from entering our territory. We refer to them as “infiltrators,” yet the truth is that they do not need to truly infiltrate anything. Our southern border is porous. The establishment of the ground obstacle and new fence has been managed for years now with impressive slowness.


We need them to wash dishes 

If the immigrants somehow survive the tortuous road courtesy of the desert and the detainment and abuse camps of human traders and the greedy, sadistic smuggling gangs, all that’s left for them is to step into Israel and start their lives in the promised land.


The truth is that we need them, these black people, to do their job and then go. That is, go and rest for a few hours under minimal living conditions, until the next shift starts.


We need them to sweep our streets, clean our homes, and wash the dishes in our restaurants. We need them to take up the dirty work, a role that in the past was reserved for the Palestinians, until it became a little too dangerous to employ them.


This is not an existential threat; rather, it’s an existential need. And in a few years, once they have children, we shall send Eli Yishai and his inspectors to persecute and expel them. After all, the next shipment is already knocking at our doors.



פרסום ראשון: 12.22.11, 00:42
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