Benayoun’s Song

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Excerpt from this day’s program:

…But in the Amir Benayoun controversy today, President Rivlin cancelled Amir’s prospective performance in the President’s official residence next week in honor of the Jews who fled Arab lands, like Benayoun’s family because of this song which paints the picture of a smiling Arab youth who can suddenly turn into a knife and gun wielding butcher.

The issue here is the denial of the Jews the right to hate the enemy. Not allowed. A Jew who expresses hatred for the Arabs is a racist.

And once again we have Israelis misunderstanding and misusing words from the West. The Hebrew for racism is gezanoot, from the basic word geza meaning trunk, as in trunk of a tree, or the trunk of a railroad network.

On one level it works, but it misses the element of skin color associated with the word “racism” in the West. Israelis have never ever referred to the Arabs as “The Browns” as South African whites spoke of “The Blacks,” or white trash Americans in the Deep South speak of the “Nigras.”

The physical appearance of the Ishmaelites among us has absolutely nothing to with the normal, human, often healthy anger of Jews at Arabs for their behavior, their barbaric aggression against us…