Friday, November 19, 2004

Israeli Reality TV: "The Ambassador"

A new TV series called 'The Ambassador' features 14 Israelis trying to outdo each other battling Israel's global image problem in the face of a 4-year-old Palestinian uprising.

Devised by an American-Jewish benefactor, the series begins airing next week with contestants in business suits plying their propaganda skills at various foreign locales, a Channel Two advertisement said on Thursday.

In a format recalling the U.S. reality show 'The Apprentice,' where participants vie for a management post under magnate Donald Trump, an Israeli panel including an ex-security chief and a former army spokesman will weed out the winner.

The prize: an all-expenses-paid year working as an Israeli public relations liaison in New York.

Israeli crackdowns on a Palestinian revolt raging in the West Bank and Gaza Strip since September 2000 have drawn censure internationally, and many Israelis say their politicians lack the personality or language skills to offset the bad press.