The Johannesburg City Council on November 29 adopted a motion to rename Sandton Drive – a prominent thoroughfare in Johannesburg, which is home to most of South Africa’s 70,000-strong Jewish community – after Palestinian terrorist Leila Khaled. The move is not only hurtful to South African Jews and Israelis, but to all decent South Africans and people around the world.
It is also a direct offence to the US, whose consulate is currently situated on Sandton Drive.
The Haifa-born Khaled, 74, who now lives in Jordan, is a member of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestinian and was one of the hijackers of TWA Flight 840 from Rome via Athens to Tel Aviv in 1969, and also took part in one of the four Dawson’s Field hijackings the following year.
So the carjacking capital of the world re-names a main thoroughfare after a hijacker. How apt. But then law and order is not one of South Africa’s strong points. There were 20,000 murder cases recorded in 2017/18. This gives South Africa a rather alarming 57 murders a day and at a rate of 35.7 people murdered per 100,000 population. Leila Khaled and her type would feel right at home there.