Racism is in the air: Video showing racist exchange between Israelis and a flight attendant goes viral

Pinterest LinkedIn Tumblr

Big story going viral on Facebook and in the Israeli press about a vulgar and racist exchange between some Israeli passengers and a flight attendant on an Israir Airlines flight to Varna, Bulgaria.

Ami Kaufman at +972 cuts to the chase:

The headlines are pretty much the same all over, and include the words: “Watch: The Ugly Israeli,” in reference to what Israelis see as the rude behavior they are notorious for worldwide.

However, few (including mainstream media) paid attention to the little gem hidden in the video, a one-liner that epitomizes the casual racism so widespread in the Jewish state.

The flight attendant refuses to sell chocolate to a passenger (apparently he was busy with another passenger, it’s difficult to discern the exact reason). Things heat up. Then, her sister sitting across the aisle says at 0:28 in the video below: “She just wants to buy chocolate, what is she – an Arab?”

……Of course, this is understandable. The only reason a flight attendant refuses to sell chocolate to someone is because they’re Arab.


Few paid attention? Maybe they tried to bury it?  The Jerusalem Post, published the video with English captions (original Hebrew) but skipped mention of the racist segment of the exchange.  It’s difficult to comprehend how casual racism is so embedded in Israeli society that the insertion of the woman yelling her bigoted screed is completely passed over in their coverage. We’ve documented the casualness of Israeli racism before. It’s ugly and sad, something I’ll likely never get used to or expect.

This video exposes that casualness which may be the reason, thus far, it’s gotten passed over by western media. But with all the attention it’s garnering on social media that’s probably about to change.

Haaretz mentioned

one Facebook user wrote in response to the video, “flight attendants from foreign airlines call the flight to Tel Aviv – Hell Aviv. I wonder why?”

Here’s the video and the relevant exchange, translation from Hebrew by Reem Khamis-Dakwar:

Passenger 1: You will sell me Chocolate. Do you understand? You are my worker, I paid money for you.

Flight attendant: I am not your worker. You would die before I can be your worker 

Passenger 1: I want the chocolate. Why wouldn’t you sell me the chocolate. I want the chocolate. What is that. I want the chocolate 

Flight attendant: If you think you’re raising your voice and being a little bit more violent so most probably you won’t achieve what you want

Passenger 2: Sister of Passenger 1 from the other side of the aisle: Sell her the chocolate, what is she an Arab? F**your  god (Arabic curse), sell her the chocolate! Do you hear? She paid for her plane ticket sell her the chocolate! Yalla (Another Arabic word)

Lower your tone fast! Sell her the chocolate fast!Ya peace of trash! What is that he is not selling her chocolate? A peace of trash ! You will not sell my sister chocolate.

At this point, the flight attendant approach the sister and told her??Remember my words, To “Varna”(Bulgaria)  you will not arrive 

A third passenger sitting next to passenger 1 joined  by a string of curses toward flight attendant. 


Thanks to Ofer Neiman and Jamil Dakwar

Most Voted
Newest Oldest
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Israelis being rude and obnoxious?!?

Surely not! That would just be so out of character.

Wow. Is it antisemitic to point out that anyone else would have been arrested for acting out like this on an airplane? From another report:,7340,L-4629380,00.html “When the plane landed in Varna, the flight crew contacted the police to report the attack, but no measures were taken against the passengers.… Read more »

Am I gobsmacked? No. I will re-post part of what I wrote about this earlier today: “Earlier this week, there was an article about BG airport staff: “Welcome to Israel, you subhuman Re-entry into the country proved to be a humiliating affair, involving an interrogation and fingerprints.” link to… Read more »

One time I was on an international flight and the boy and his Mom behind sitting me were having an issue. The mother scolded him and the boy cried repeatedly in English to stop hitting him. I turned around and told her “You don’t have to hit kids”. She fired… Read more »

There’s been a couple of articles in haaretz arguing over the treatment tourists and even Israelis suffer when they arrive at Ben Gurion Airport in comparison to Berlin where quite a few Israelis have chosen to go and live One of the readers left this priceless comment: “I lived in… Read more »