Thursday, August 30, 2007

Page Eleven

Israel's best selling daily, Yedioth Aharonot, dedicates its front page today, as well as its following four pages, to racism in Israel. What we refer to as "racism" is usually distrust and disgust across ethnic lines. The country reeks with it. It's an issue that well deserves discussing.

Yedioth picked six men, one an Arab, one Hassidic, one Jewish of Moroccan origin, one of a Russian origin, one of Ethiopian origin and one of Ashkenazy origin. They were sent to seek jobs, apartments and kindergartens for their children in several cities around the country. The absence of a woman is a bit puzzling, as well as that of a "work immigrant", but what's done is done. The big question is: how did they fare?

Of the different queries performed by the Arab (their number is not given) he was rejected 66 times. The Ashkenazi was not rejected once. Prejudice towards Moroccans and the Haredim is on the drop, it seems, but the Ethiopian was met with much hostility too, which is straight, honest to God racism.

Yesterday the IDF killed three children of the same family by bombing their neighborhood in the northern Gaza strip. In today's Yedioth Aharonot These deaths are mentioned in a small "box", on the bottom corner of page eleven, far past the five full pages dedicated to racism. They are defined in the headline as a "tragic mistake".

Why "tragic"? Aren't those Palestinian kids? They are, for God's sake, Arabs! We don't want them in our kindergartens, we don't want them on our streets. Please just let them die and don't tell us about it at all, so we can sit snugly and read in our newspaper about how everybody is so surprisingly racist.

4 comments:

Miriam (Mimi) Asnes said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Miriam (Mimi) Asnes said...

Speaking of attention in the Israeli press to Palestinian victims of the Occupation, I just heard that a new play is being produced in France based on the reporting work of Amira Hass; Elik Elhanan's brother is translating it. Elik says hi to your family, by the way; he's here at Columbia studying Yiddish :)

Nikol said...

While I mostly agree with your post, this article by Obadiah Shoher presents the haredim in somewhat different light http://samsonblinded.org/blog/not-true-rabbis.htm Shoher argues against haredim isolating themselves from other Jews instead of bringing the religion to masses.

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