A Load of BDS!

It is fast becoming the hottest buzzword in the anti-Israel activist camp. BDS or calls for Boycotts, Divestment and Sanctions by these activists against the Jewish State. Bored thespians and rock stars seeking a cause have decided that this is the new issue that they need to shed a light on. Trade Unionists, academics and world figures who need a reason to remain notorious are also jumping aboard the crazy train. It’s a pity about the conflict and human rights abuse in other parts of the world that are ignored. 

What is the rationale behind this worrying trend? The motivation is simple. If you paint Israel with the same colours as that of Apartheid South Africa and dish out the same treatment, then you can change the political status quo. Sounds simple doesn’t it. Except that in this case, changing the status quo in Israeli politics is not the end game result that detractors hope to achieve. In this case, questioning Israel’s right to exist as a sovereign state is up for debate. Anti-Israeli operatives will passionately argue that this treatment worked for South Africa but fail to realise that the South African paradigm is not one solution fits all. Two different regions, two completely separate issues. 

Read the complete article as it appears in The Jewish Thinker:


Dances with Durban and Tangos with Tutu

South Africa’s relationship with Israel has always been tenuous, in fact some might even say schizophrenic. A large part of my work in South Africa was spent working with Media Team Israel – a body under the auspices of the South Africa Zionist Federation. The Team’s mandate is to counter bias in the media, work deemed urgent and important.

In fact, one day a highly influential figure in Israeli media remarked that in his opinion, outside of Middle East Arab media, South Africa has the most hostile anti-Israel media worldwide.

The underlying message to the Jewish community has always been “Your Jewish traditions are welcome, your Zionism is not”. As if the two can be differentiated! This is reflected in the press coverage and editorial policies of major news providers.


Read the complete article as it appears in Honest Reporting


Guiding the Perplexed…

Israel is a wonderful hodge-podge or mosaic of different cultures and a hotbed of innovative ideas. Hey, we have become the people of the book. Not just the Facebook (thanks Mr. President for that comment) or the bible (we have some of its prime real estate over here) but that fantastic best-seller, The Start Up Nation. We innovate! We Create! We Debate! We Ate?

When you make Aliyah (immigrate to Israel) you hear all sorts of anecdotes about Israeli culture. You are told again and again that you will be moving to a country with a completely different culture but nobody prepares you for just how downright entertaining living in Israel can be. Yes, there are days that are frustrating and perplexing and there are days when you question your decision to come but there are also days when living here is just so funny, some TV network should option a sitcom. So here are some observations made by this Olah Chadesha (new immigrant) that you just have to take with a pinch of salt. Or a large cocktail.

Read the complete article as it appears in The Times of Israel