For ‘Birthright’ tourists, hill above Gaza is fun like the Grand Canyon

Israel/Palestine
on 43 Comments

hillofshame1Max Blumenthal has a savage post (with many great photos by Kali Harper, including this one) about a visit to the "Hill of Shame" outside Sderot where Israelis sat to watch the Gaza assault. He just visited the spot, and this is what he saw. Please go to his site and look at the pictures of these atrocity-tourists…

While [guide Eric] Yellin described conditions inside Gaza and discussed the rocketing of nearby communities, a bus filled with students from Argentina on a Birthright Israel-style tour pulled up to the hill.

The students rushed out of the bus and began taking photos in front of the Gaza landscape as though they were at the Grand Canyon. I asked a group of them what they thought of the people living inside the Gaza Strip. A girl looked at me, then at our group, then remarked about us in Spanish to her friends, “They’re Palestinians. Let’s get out of here.” Strangely, there were no Palestinians in our group; it consisted mostly of white people from the United States.

All of the sudden, a group of soldiers from the Givati Brigade motored up the hill to meet the Argentinian students. As soon as the soldiers emerged from their jeeps, they were surrounded by giggling girls eager to climb all over them and their jeeps. The guys, who were wearing the IDF t-shirts and hats sold in Jerusalem tourist shops, lined up for photos with the troops, who enthusiastically obliged…

Besides learning fanciful and discredited notions about the usefulness of fortress Israel in a dark, Jew-hating world, Birthright tourists are taught to worship the power of the IDF and are taught that the army is in fact defending “the Jewish people.” Meanwhile they learn nothing about the culture of Palestinians and are expressly forbidden from meeting them. Instead of meeting Israeli peace activists like Eric Yellin, they receive a lecture from an Orientalist huckster (check out one of Birthright’s favorite speakers here) about Palestinian “incitement” and the threat of radical Islam. In their free time, Birthright tourists are urged to enjoy a Goldstar-sodden, Porky’s-style bachannal in the hope that they will someday contribute to a spike in the Jewish birthrate. Sleeping with a soldier, whether male or female, is especially encouraged.

Blumenthal’s entire post includes a glimpse of Peter Beinart lamenting the troubles of liberal Zionism, and the struggle of the two-state solution, and Blumenthal’s comment about how irrelevant this inter-ethnic ordeal is becoming to Palestinians in the audience.

43 Responses

  1. Chaos4700
    July 19, 2010, 8:55 am

    Gosh, I can already hear Witty cranking out a post bashing Phil Weiss and Max Blumenthal and running interference for these Arab-hating tourists from here.

    Because students from Argentina on spring break have that coveted “right of return” that obviously, Palestinians that grew up in Najd (that’s what Sderot used to be called, Witty, before Jewish real estate investors from New York and elsewhere came along) for generations don’t.

    Considering how conditioned these tourists are for racism, they’d fit in moving to Witty’s suburb in the US moreso than to the Middle East, anyway, huh.

    • thankgodimatheist
      July 19, 2010, 9:29 am

      Chaos
      Have pity for poor Witty..His comments are jammed in a bottle neck and trickle down one drop at a time..Why not have a drink to that?

      • Chaos4700
        July 19, 2010, 9:32 am

        Incidentally, has anyone heard me even once complain about being under moderation? And this post doesn’t constitute that, either, for the record. I see that the decision was appropriate.

  2. thankgodimatheist
    July 19, 2010, 9:19 am

    Ah! Le temps des colonies!!

  3. Leper Colonialist
    July 19, 2010, 9:22 am

    And once again, we will ponder the question “WHY DO THEY HATE US?”

    Ain’t it painfully obvious?

    The only consolations, if that, is that 100 years from now visiting that spot will be akin to visiting the Little Big Horn or someplace similar. And do we have any indication if the folks in the image have any political consciousness or motivation to their “tourism’?

  4. hayate
    July 19, 2010, 10:39 am

    This is why zionism needs to be eradicated completely.

    • thankgodimatheist
      July 19, 2010, 7:59 pm

      “This is why zionism needs to be eradicated completely.”

      Are you saying you want to wipe Israel off the map? Are you actively working on a nuclear bomb? A hidden facility in your shed perhaps? Our translators fluent in the Swanghili tongue are affirmative. (sarcasm people, sarcasm)

    • Schwartzman
      July 19, 2010, 11:46 pm

      And what do you do with the Zionists? How do you eradicate a movement without eradicating it’s followers?

      • thankgodimatheist
        July 19, 2010, 11:51 pm

        Zionism is a political doctrine. You don’t have to eradicate its followers to eradicate it. A philosophy has no arms and legs..

      • Chaos4700
        July 20, 2010, 12:04 am

        This particular philosophy doesn’t even have a heart.

      • hayate
        July 20, 2010, 12:56 am

        Exactly, TGIA, zionism is a political doctrine. We don’t need to kill nazis to dissuade people from being nazis, just make sure nazism is exposedfor what it is. Few will be nazis then, and those that do are easily neutralised when they start getting really ugly. The old jim crowism of the american south is also now well on its way to total marginalization (despite constant zionist attempts at revival) and will soon be anathema to the point nazism is now. This is how to treat the zionist movement, expose it bigotry, ethnic supremacy and crimes for what they are and human nature will see to its demise.

      • Mooser
        July 21, 2010, 5:32 pm

        “And what do you do with the Zionists?”

        They all get lovely parting gifts, and a bus ticket.
        Hey Schwarztzman, they’re your buddies, you take care of them. I realise a lot of them may end up in America, so tell them before they land that we have laws here, and you can’t go around stealing peoples land and houses.
        And if you could improve their manners a little too, they will fit right in.
        In fact, I’m sure they will find American jails quite comfortable.

  5. hayate
    July 19, 2010, 11:17 am

    Remember those american tourists in israel filmed last year making all sorts of racist comments? It seems the rubbish is very consistent in its lack of any humanity. One would think the countries these tourists come from would be better off without these people.

    • radii
      July 19, 2010, 4:41 pm

      an interesting intersect: vulgar brutes happily and freely express racism, advocate violence and generally feel free to be douchebags in a country that is vulgar and brutish

  6. pjdude
    July 19, 2010, 12:42 pm

    wait is really true that birthright tourists are encouraged to have sex with IDF troops?

    • hayate
      July 19, 2010, 9:56 pm

      “wait is really true that birthright tourists are encouraged to have sex with IDF troops?”

      It’s a clever strategy to keep the idf soldiers occupied and away from the settler’s goats.

      ;D

  7. aparisian
    July 19, 2010, 1:24 pm

    Everytime i read these stories, i just feel that the end of Zionist empire is coming soon…

  8. joer
    July 19, 2010, 3:01 pm

    This Birthright Israel thing is so contrived and so stale. Now a Birthright Palestine, on the other hand, would be very moving and very dramatic. Survivors of the Nakba should be allowed to visit their home towns while there is still time.

    • pjdude
      July 19, 2010, 3:24 pm

      birth right unplugged is something I think you should look into

      • joer
        July 19, 2010, 7:27 pm

        Perhaps you should look into Birthright Unhinged.

      • thankgodimatheist
        July 19, 2010, 8:12 pm

        Joer
        There’s already a birthright Palestine association..I posted it once…

      • thankgodimatheist
        July 19, 2010, 8:18 pm

        Introducing Birthright Palestine

        Ok, so they won’t fly you to Palestine for free, but it still sounds like a worthwhile program: Birthright Palestine.
        “A project of the Palestine Center for National Strategic Studies, Birthright Palestine “is meant to gather first generation, western‐born Palestinians (over the age of 18‐years old) in their ancestral homeland, so that they can reunite and witness firsthand how their brethren are living under illegal Israeli military occupation.”

        The program is made‐up of four major components, education, tourism, hospitality, and volunteering, and was created to maintain Palestinian unity on an international level and to make foreign‐born Palestinians feel at home in their homeland.
        link to kabobfest.com

  9. Queue
    July 19, 2010, 5:02 pm

    I like how they chose a shot with that girl’s butt squarely at the center of the image.

    Keep it classy, Israel!

    • demize
      July 19, 2010, 6:52 pm

      Lol. They know their, ahem, target audience.

    • Schwartzman
      July 19, 2010, 11:51 pm

      So Israel took these photos? I don’t understand what you are saying? They were taken by Kali Harper. How does he/she represent Israel? If anyone takes a picture of a girl’s ass in Israel that is a poor reflection on the state.

      This isn’t the Gaza strip ppl, it is ok to show some skin in these parts.

      • Chaos4700
        July 20, 2010, 12:03 am

        Yeah. If it were the Gaza Strip, the IDF soldiers would be peppering these women with bullet holes instead of their phone numbers.

      • demize
        July 20, 2010, 12:08 am

        “Its not the Gaza strip people” Let’s see what happens if they walk through a Haredi neighborhood like that.

      • thankgodimatheist
        July 20, 2010, 3:51 am

        C’mon now Schwartzman! It’s a light-hearted comment..There’s no dangerous political message in saying that this butt is significantly centered..As for some Israeli ads we’ve seen worse..Remember the fellatio touristic ad?

      • Mooser
        July 21, 2010, 5:35 pm

        Hey Schwartzman, don’t worry, it’s all too easy to tell what that butt will look like in twenty years, or maybe just ten.

      • Bumblebye
        July 21, 2010, 5:47 pm

        Careful Mooser, the missus might be looking over your shoulder!

  10. thankgodimatheist
    July 19, 2010, 8:09 pm

    Cute, brainwashed, “innocent” lobotomy materiel……Each fed on a copy of Joan Peters’ “From Time Immemorial” donated by generous benefactors from your local AIPAC and affiliated bureau…”Ils n’ont pas de pain? Qu’ils mangent donc des brioches!” (They have no bread to eat? Let them eat cake”)

    • hayate
      July 20, 2010, 1:03 am

      It really is depressing to encounter a fascist mind in an attractive package in real life.

  11. sherbrsi
    July 19, 2010, 8:13 pm

    “These days [serving in the IDF] is not as honorable as it used to be. We don’t have big wars anymore, just little actions here and there.”

    The IDF is already itching for war. Apparently terrorizing the Palestinians under occupation isn’t exciting or honorable enough.

    • eljay
      July 19, 2010, 8:20 pm

      >> We don’t have big wars anymore, just little actions here and there.

      Now ain’t that a goddamned tragedy! Deprived of “big wars”, this poor kid may get to keep his life AND all his limbs. How unfair is that?! :-\

  12. sherbrsi
    July 19, 2010, 8:15 pm

    Beinart had lambasted the ossified Jewish establishment of Abe Foxman, Alan Dershowitz and David Harris for selling young Jews on an anti-democratic, occupying and increasingly racist Israel, turning them off to Zionism in the process. Then in the next breath he offered high praise for Birthright Israel.

    Very telling of how contradictory “liberal Zionism” is.

  13. Keith
    July 19, 2010, 10:50 pm

    With all due respect to Israeli geneticists, the gals in the picture don’t look all that Semitic to me.

    • thankgodimatheist
      July 19, 2010, 11:03 pm

      Israeli geneticists and Israeli archaeologists are working hand in hand at the service of the occupation and the obliteration of Palestine..

    • hayate
      July 20, 2010, 1:00 am

      “With all due respect to Israeli geneticists, the gals in the picture don’t look all that Semitic to me.”

      They were from Argentina – obviously, they’ve gone partly native. ;D

    • Walid
      July 20, 2010, 6:04 am

      “…In their free time, Birthright tourists are urged to enjoy a Goldstar-sodden, Porky’s-style bachannal in the hope that they will someday contribute to a spike in the Jewish birthrate. Sleeping with a soldier, whether male or female, is especially encouraged.”

      You have to learn to appreciate that open Israeli mentality that introduces religion into everything. Sleep with a soldier and help Israel in its demographic battles; it used to be just about planting trees and now it’s about planting soldiers.

      • Mooser
        July 21, 2010, 5:37 pm

        Walid, I don’t know the Hebrew, but I think it’s called the Strength-through-Joy campaign.

      • Mooser
        July 21, 2010, 6:45 pm

        I guess Zionist supporters will say American Jews are on a Strength-through-Gentile campaign, you know, intermarriage.

      • Keith
        July 21, 2010, 10:02 pm

        MOOSER- Wrongo. True Zionist Jews don’t believe in intermarriage or other forms of fraternizing with the enemy. The people that shall dwell apart wishes to keep its purity unsullied.

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