We let Jackie Robinson play ball 62 years ago

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Ali Abunimah read aloud this clipping from Ynet before his speech last Saturday at Hampshire. I’m republishing most of it below. Recently I said that Israeli elections are 45 years behind ours because the Democratic Party finally seated Mississippi blacks after 1964, and Israelis still don’t give Palestinian Arab parties power in creating governing coalitions. Well, sports are even further behind us.

Beitar Jerusalem captain Aviram Baruchyan met Thursday evening with fans belonging to the "La Familia" organization and apologized for saying that he would like to see an Arab play in the football team.

The fans told him they were hurt by the remark he made about 10 days ago at an anti-violence conference.

Baruchyan said at the end of Thursday’s meeting, "The most painful thing is that I unfortunately hurt Beitar’s fans, and I understood that I hurt them very much. It’s important for me that the players know and that everyone knows that I am with them through thick and thin, and I don’t care what other people think or write.

"However," he added, "it’s important for me to stress that I’m not the one who decides on these things, but if at the moment the fans don’t want it, there won’t be an Arab player in Beitar."

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