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Hypothetical conversations about food and inequality

November 3, 2009

jrilth04.jpg‘This falafel tastes great! Could you tell me why your government is actively trying to rid Jerusalem of its non-Jewish residents?’

Not content with systematically robbing Palestinians of humus (Latin for earth), the Israeli PR apparatus robs them of hummus as well.

Every year so-called ‘pro-Israeli’ groups (sometimes called ‘friends of Israel,’ which doesn’t sound right when you adapt it to ‘friends of France’ or ‘friends of Polynesia’) on North American universities and colleges sponsor IsraelFest. It’s important to give a ‘friendly’ face to occupation by serving Levantine food dressed with a decorative Israeli flag toothpick.

Inspired by one student’s hypothetical conversation starter, here are some prompts the next time a pro-occupation and pro-inequality public relations campaign makes you choke on your shawarma.

persimmonlr9.jpgThis Mediterranean fruit salad tastes fresh and delicious. Can we have a conversation about the ‘diet‘ the Israeli government is imposing on the people of Gaza? What about the restrictions placed on fishermen to fish past 3 nautical miles? And do you agree with the Israeli Offense Forces’ Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT) prohibitions of ‘delicacies’ like cherries, kiwi, green almonds, pomegranates and chocolate?

Olive trees destroyed and uprooted by the army, Ni'ilinOrganically produced olives? Wow! Do you have any statement regarding the Israeli Occupation Forces’ routine destruction of thousands of olive trees for what it calls the building of ‘sterile’ roads that Palestinians are barred from using? What do you think about your government’s systematic destruction of olive trees in villages like Ni’ilin?
KosherDairyHummusTahini-TuvTaamChumus_zoom_image1_35153.jpgCreamy hummus! What do you think of the fact that Israel forces Palestinians to live on less than 70 liters of water a day? Or that the ‘restriction of luxury products‘ for Palestinians (like paper, shoes and rice) has economic benefits for Israeli farmers?

new_image.jpg[Nota bene: Sabra is a subsidiary of an Israeli company that ‘adopted’ the Golani Brigade, which has a history of severe human rights abuses.]

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