Sunday, July 28, 2013

Erasing Jewish Jerusalem from Apple maps

Apple erases all trace of Jewish existence in 'occupied Jerusalem' - click to enlarge (note I am using the version of Maps that came with iPad3)
No people and city have a stronger link than the Jewish people and the city of Jerusalem - a link that has been unbroken physically as well as spiritually for thousands of years. Even during the worst period of exile Jews lived and prayed in Jerusalem. Only during the illegal Jordanian occupation of 1948-67 were Jews completely unable to pray at the Western wall.

Because this link is so fundamental in Israel's narrative, there are no limits to the extent to which the antisemites will go in seeking to deny the truth about this link. Breaking the link between the Jews and Jerusalem is for them the key to the ultimate deligitimization of the State of Israel. But while the Arabs do everything they can to try to deny the historical facts, the Western antisemites - led by the EU and the US State Department do everything they can to deny the current status of Jews in Jerusalem. That is why, for example, the EU last week announced their boycott of Jewish businesses in 'occupied' East Jerusalem and why the US this week once again confirmed its bizarre refusal to recognise any Jew born in Jerusalem as having been born in Israel.

Some recent visits to Israel have, however, highlighted some particularly pernicious examples of how technology is being used to try to deny the existence of Jews. Take, for example, the case of the north Jerusalem suburb Pisgat Zaev - something close to being a city in its own right with 50,000 residents. Although this city was developed after 1967, much of the land was bought by Jews in the 1930s. On the basis of Jordan's illegal occupation of this land during 1948-67 the 'international community' regards it as 'occupied territory' even though it did not belong to any state. Any rational person who has actually travelled through this and other Jewish areas of 'occupied Jerusalem' knows that this land will never be 'given up' under any 'peace agreement'.  Yet, bizarrely, when I tried to navigate to Pisgat Zaev using the Apple iPad Maps application (not Google Maps) I discovered to my astonishment that not only does no such place exist but there is a completely empty space on the map where it is physically located. The same is true for all other Jewish areas of 'occupied East Jersusalem' such as Gilo; yet, far smaller Arab areas of East Jerusalem such as Silwan are on the app. The most bizarre omission of all is the completely empty space where the old city of Jerualem should be.

Sadly, there are plenty of (presumably Jewish) Israelis only too happy to go along with this kind of nonsense. On a previous trip the satellite navigation device (which was programmed in Hebrew) that we hired along with a car actually not only failed to recognize Jewish areas of  'occupied Jerusalem' but kept instructing us to turn around whenever we approached them.

1 comment:

asherpat said...

While technically excellent, Apple as a brand is beloved by "progressives" including Israel haters - just recall the Occupy This or That iPad waving and MacBook typing rich kids with Gree Palestine T-shirts.

I wudnt be seen dead with an Apple product, perhaps you shud try other, less pretentious "leftie" brands such as Microsoft.