April 02, 2012

Fighting for the Zionist Dream?

But where are zionists fighting for their dream? A friend of mine sent me a link to a Jerusalem Post article about a violent attack on a footballer. Here's a chunk of the article:
A brawl broke out Saturday night at the soccer match between Maccabi Petah Tikva and Hapoel Haifa, at the end of which Haifa midfielder Ali Khatib was taken to hospital.
Khatib was allegedly headbutted by Petah Tikva’s goalkeeping coach before being kicked while on the ground by a man supposedly connected to the Petah Tikva management. The two men were detained and remanded to custody until Monday at 4 p.m.
If you click on the link some time soon you will see the page festooned with adverts for an event called Fighting for the Zionist Dream.  It's Jerusalem Post hosted event including various zionist bigwigs including the ubiquitous, Alan Dershowitz. 

It occurred to my friend that Ali Khatib may have been assaulted because he is an Arab. In other words, his assailants could well have been fighting for the zionist dream.

An editorial in today's Ha'aretz certainly takes that view. It is headed, It's time to intervene against racism in Israeli soccer and it gives the following details:
In March alone, there were four recorded violent incidents linked to Israeli soccer.
Thousands of Hapoel Tel Aviv fans rioted after the team lost the Tel Aviv derby, throwing objects onto the field and blocking the players of both teams from leaving it. A few days later, two Maccabi Petah Tikva fans burst onto the field and tried to assault a referee; then we had the 300 Beitar Jerusalem fans who ran amok at the Malha Mall, yelling "Death to the Arabs" and beating up Arab cleaning workers; and on Saturday two officials of the Maccabi Petah Tikva club attacked Hapoel Haifa player Ali Khatib, who was head-butted by one and kicked in the face by the other.
So, it's not quite clear which events amounted to "fighting for the zionist dream" but maybe Alan Dershowitz can shed some light on racist violence in Israeli football.

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