The recent admission by the state of Israel that it has been clandestinely using Depo-Provera, contraceptive injection containing the hormone progestin, on Ethiopian Israeli women is just the beginning. Israel must apologize and make restitution to the victims.
There should be an apology by no less than the Prime Minister, not only to Ethiopian Jews but to all Jews worldwide, that their leaders are sorry for participating in such a deplorable and inhumane act.
Israel’s behavior goes far beyond insensitivity, bureaucratic ineptitude or an everlasting cultural-gap between Ethiopian and non-Ethiopian Israelis. And it is now approaching borderline racism. There are many reasons to question the state’s attitude towards the Ethiopian community, including the disposal of donated Ethiopian blood due to a perceived fear of AIDS transmittal; an apparent institutionalized housing racism that was loudly protested exactly one year ago, as well as the forced “conversion” of many Ethiopian Jews upon their relocation to Israel.