Tuesday, January 23, 2007

phony kasbahs, righteous gentiles, and oily ice cream

After a hiatus in America, Izzy Bee is back in Jerusalem. Such a buzz.

The nomination of the first Arab "righteous gentile", a Tunisian farmer named Khaled Abd al-Wahad who, according to a Jewish woman's testimony, saved Amy Boukris and 24 of her relatives from Nazi persecution, is huge news here. The Holocaust Museum, Yad Vashem, reportedly declined to rate the likelihood of its recognising this Arab hero nominated by the American scholar Robert Satloff, although 60 of the more than 21,000 named heroes who risked their lives to save threatened Jews from the Holocaust are indeed Muslims. Yet Khaled would be the first Arab ever to win such kudos, and some analysts predict that the high profile honor would help counteract the trend towards holocaust denial in some Arab countries.

Haaretz, the leftish newspaper which reported this item on its front page, also ran a weird recipe for a Holy Land ice cream containing whipped cream, honey and olive oil. Sprinkle on a bit of rosemary with the drizzled olive oil and you have a Biblical sweet treat. Milk and honey, I can see...but this takes some getting used to. Not a likely prospect for a Baskin-Robbins scoop of the month.

The Jerusalem Post devoted lots of space to the IDF's new American-built war gaming town, erected near Tze'elim in the southern Negev, where mock mosques, a marketplace, and an ersatz kasbah give a hyper-realistic setting for training exercises aimed at countering urban guerrilla warfare. William Arkin, a Vermont-based reporter, had leaked much of this last year, and the inaugural war games were opened up to the press. According to journalists who looked on, the young Israeli Defence Forces cadets were really ready to rock the kasbah. Canine and media handlers also will undergo training in the mock-up Muslim neighborhood, to prepare new tricks for the old dogs of war.

1 comment:

Lydia Sizer said...

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--Lydia Sizer