Overington disputes the following claims written in a recent column for The Age:
The Parsees of India might provide a model. The Parsees are a very tiny, very rich ethnic and religious minority. They own perhaps most of the land in central Mumbai as well as the country’s largest conglomerate. And yet ordinary Indians admire andTo rebut this claim, Overington cites that great and most reliable resource - Wikipedia - to claim Parsees are self-centred and not as selfless as they are made out to be:
respect them. Violence against them is unthinkable ...
Their overriding characteristic is a deep interest in the welfare of others. They have established hospitals, libraries, schools, museums and many other institutions and, most importantly, not for the Parsee community exclusively but for everyone.
Well, actually no, as this article points out:
Parsi-only fertility clinic has been set up in Mumbai to encourage the community to reproduce itself.
Perhaps Caroline should travel to India and Pakistan and see what important work Parsees are doing in the fields of health, education and other philanthropy before she next maligns this minority community.
There are generous philanthropic Jews, Christians, Muslims, Parsees, Hindus, Buddhists, Jains, athiests etc etc. Anyone can be generous. And anyone can have an ulterior motive for their generosity. Which religion teaches people not to be generous?
Caroline could have made that point without collectively slapping one particular group. In attacking what she felt was someone else's bigotry, she exposed her own.
With friends like Overington, unconditional supporters of Israel don't need enemies.
UPDATE I: It seems that those nasty racist anti-Jewish anti-Israeli Israelis have now joined the neo-Nazi bandwagon. Margaret Simons' blog The Content Makers reports about a rather nasty anti-Semitic anti-Israeli column that appeared on this mainstream Israeli website which apparently is:
... the website of the country’s largest circulating newspaper.Simons was tipped off about this offensive vicious anti-Semitic diatribe by:
... an Israeli-Australian who ... points out that [the Backman piece] is mild in the extreme compared to some of what is published in the Israeli media.Here are some lengthy excerpts from this disgraceful column ...
Our reputation – our fault
Israelis' violent, vulgar behavior abroad is root of growing hatred towards us that has nothing to do with anti-Semitism
If you continue the trek a little further, you can encounter the women of the Dao tribe, who have learned to say "Come and fuck me" in Hebrew. Yes, Rabbi Ovadia Yosef was right – these women's teachers were asses. No, actually why insult the asses? Their teachers were plain Israelis like me and you.
The global traveling season is now at its peak. Hordes of tourists are storming Thailand and Laos, South America and Kenya. And the battle has already been decided. The Israeli, any Israeli, has become an icon of evilness, ugliness, corruption and exploitation. There is no use searching for ways to change the behavior of Israelis abroad. This is a lost cause.I urge The Australian to immediately commission an editorial asking whether such anti-Israeli and anti-Semitic comments really reflect the opinions of the editors of Yedioth Ahronoth. There's absolutely no doubt that the amount of anti-Israel and/or anti-Semitic material in Israeli newspapers has just gone too far.
Travel Independent (www.travelindependent.info) is the online Mecca for tourists worldwide. The website offers accurate, concise and helpful reviews on any destination in the world.
And this is what the site has to say about us in its summary on India: "Aside from Indians you will find travels from all over Europe, USA and Australia/NZ, including as in Nepal/Thailand and South America, a large number of Israelis many of whom are fresh out of the army and seem to do everything they can to further worsen their reputation with locals and foreigners alike."
Travel Independent isn't anti-Semitic. As a travel destination, it gives Israel very warm recommendations. The Hmong women aren't anti-Semitic as well, and neither are the people of Japan, Peru or Tanzania, or most of the western travelers who witness this humiliation.
A new form of hatred towards Israelis is developing among people who don't even have a clue where the country is. An "anti-Semitism" that has nothing to do with God or Judaism.
Years of cultural corruption
For his part, the Israeli traveler goes out of his way not to be identified as an Israeli, not due to security concerns but simply for fear he will not be welcome. And he makes great efforts not to go where other Israelis go, not for the sake of exclusiveness, but simply because he knows that his countrymen will be the first ones to screw him over.
The Israeli pig is the product of years-long and ongoing cultural corruption. He will force the locals to watch episodes from the reality show "the Big Brother" and give them Israeli nick-names just for laughs.
His language is poor, and he is utterly uninterested in broadening his horizons. He is hostile towards Arabs and hostile towards foreigners in general and feels obligated to cheat them whenever he can (empty the open buffet; sneak six people into a double room at night so as not to come out "a sucker.") He takes over drug and women trafficking hubs just for the sense of power and bullying.
And this image can no longer be altered. Look at them and see us: a violent horde that treats the world as yet another policing mission, a destination that needs to be conquered and subdued.
No wonder that in Hebrew the verb "to do" refers both to the act of sexual conquest and to the completion of the Israeli traveler's tough, military-style trip abroad: "I did Bolivia."
I mean, seriously! Fancy Israeli writers and journalists and newspapers publishing articles critical of Israelis! What next? Will we see Islamophobic anti-Muslim sectarian bigots like this disgraceful character write and publish articles critical of Muslims, Muslim countries and Muslim community leaders?
Words © 2009 Irfan Yusuf
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