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Tuesday, July 01, 2008

PalArabs: Keep away from our keffiyehs!

A hilarious article in Palestine Today laments Israelis supposedly co-opting Palestinian Arab culture, including Jews wearing the keffiyeh. The autotranslation is a little hard, but here is part of it:
It is not enough that Israel occupies Palestinian land and displaced thousands of Palestinian citizens from their homes and stripped most important elements of normal life, but now it comes round to steal the Palestinian heritage, including the Palestinian keffiyeh and Palestinian clothes ...

Even dishes and Thyme oil and olives!

The keffiyeh is a symbol of significant importance to the Palestinians, and it was awarded by the late Palestinian president Yasser Arafat "Abu Ammar" a special elegance until the last day of his life.

He specially formed it on his head so that it resembles a map of Palestine, and stayed put on his head a sign of the Palestinian Al Shoumoukh, wherever they kufic found the pulsating heart of Palestine and everywhere in the fragrance of the smell of olives and oranges, a symbol of lasting rejection of occupation and resistance, and for the whole world symbol of the struggle And the right, the symbol of the Palestinians.

(The article goes on to say that the keffiyeh became an important symbol during the 1936 riots when terrorists would wear it to cover their faces making it hard for the British to find them. It served the same purpose in the 1987 intifada.

Now the Israelis are attempting to steal Palestinian heritage, especially the keffiyeh. Two Israeli designers, Gabi Ben-Haim and Amoco Harel designed a keffiyeh with the colors of the Israeli flag and Stars of David in an attempt to seize Palestinian folklore. They said the lines will be designed as blue on a white background, pointing out that this design is part of integrating Israel into the Middle East, and that Israel had a right to be in possession of the keffiyeh as being a part of the Middle East.

(The next paragraph says that El Al stewardesses in the 70's also wore keffiyehs.)

...These thefts were not limited to the keffiyeh and Palestinian clothing heritage, but the Israelis also wanted to seize «falafel» and present it as a popular Israeli food, and promoted via posters of the crowded shops selling souvenirs at Israeli cities and Israeli restaurants in European and American.
Notice that according to Palestinian Arabs themselves, the keffiyeh is a symbol of "resistance."

The falafel kerfuffle has been around for years. Seriously, would any Jew be insulted if for some strange reason Palestinian Arabs started loving sweet gefilte fish, Tam-Tams or Bisslis?