Salman Masalha: humiliation
The blogosphere is in uproar about an article published in the leftist daily Haaretz yesterday. The newspaper has been accused of plumbing new depths of bigotry by publishing an account of how Israeli-Arab Salman Masalha was humiliated as he underwent security questioning at Ben-Gurion airport. One passage in particular stands out for its racism: Masalha's description of being questioned by a swarthy Mizrahi Jew.
"While Masalha accuses Israel of being a racist state, he may wish to reflect on his own choice of words when describing the senior Israeli security officer whom is the object of his rage:
Ophir was a young, darkish security man, perhaps a descendant of converts from the Arabian Peninsula, perhaps from the Atlas Mountains. But one thing was clear, his black color looked very shabby, tattered and stained with evil.It is astonishing that a newspaper that promotes its “liberal” sensitivities could allow a sentence such as this to get past the editorial process. It does however, reveal that Masalha is driven by the same racism he claims to be a victim of."
Ari Soffer blogging on Arutz Sheva concludes:
"Ironically, the article in question is a rather crude attempt to portray Israeli airport security as "racist", and entitled "Israeli apartheid exposed at the airport". Yet far from revealing "Israeli racism", the author, one Salman Masalha, instead illustrates very well how deep-rooted anti-Semitism and anti-Black racism is within Arab society via a bizarre, racist outburst - which he apparently thinks nothing of even as he rails against "Israeli apartheid"."
Even liberal columnist Jeffrey Goldberg has joined the chorus of disapproval.
He tweeted: "Ok, maybe it's just time to stop reading Haaretz for a little while. An important issue, but a crazed presentation."
For Point of No Return commenter Sylvia, the episode reveals deep anti-dhimmi prejudice:
"There is absolutely nothing in that story that we, Israelis Jews, don't experience at the airport, it's the same questions and the same clarifications. What got to him is that a former dhimmi is asking those questions. And this is unbearable."