Mike Koozmin/2013 S.F. Examiner file photoZahra Billoo of the Council on American-Islamic Relations speaks at an event Tuesday announcing the new ads by the Americans Muslims for Palestine.

Mike Koozmin/2013 S.F. Examiner file photoZahra Billoo of the Council on American-Islamic Relations speaks at an event Tuesday announcing the new ads by the Americans Muslims for Palestine.

New Muni ads claim Israeli ‘apartheid’ against Palestinians

Yet another salvo has been launched in the ongoing, polarizing and divisive Israel-Palestine debate — and it’s on Muni.

Several San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency buses bearing a pro-Palestine, anti-Israel advertisement are currently ferrying The City’s commuters.

The ads, paid for by American Muslims for Palestine, feature a quote from Nobel Peace Prize winner Desmond Tutu comparing the situation in the Holy Land to apartheid in South Africa, along with a reminder that Israel receives about $3 billion in foreign aid from the U.S.

“End Apartheid Now!” the ads proclaim. “Stop U.S. Aid to Israel.”

The “apartheid” campaign is the latest in a series of messages on Muni vehicles related to the ongoing conflict in the Middle East.

Ads that used the term “savages” and urged the “defeat” of “jihad,” paid for by a New York-based pro-Israel lobby called American Freedom Defense Initiative, first appeared on buses last year.

City officials slammed the inflammatory ads as “Islamophobic,” and Muni donated the proceeds from the sales to The City’s Human Rights Commission. There are no plans to transfer the $5,030 that paid for the current “apartheid” campaign, Muni spokesman Paul Rose said.

The Council on American-Islamic Relations Ads then put ads using “jihad” in a nonmilitarized, religious context on the transit system, before “jihad” ads featuring Osama bin Laden and other faces of terror — also paid for by the American Freedom Defense Initiative, which the Southern Poverty Law Center describes as an “anti-Muslim” group — were bought in response this year.

These latest “apartheid” ads will run on Muni buses until June 6.

croberts@sfexaminer.com

american muslims for palestineBay Area NewsLocalSan Francisco MuniTransittransportation

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