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Institutionalised racism is the price paid by Israel’s third class citizens

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Palestinians these days are fond of circulating on social media a scene from an old Israeli comedy which shows a group of Hamas fighters who could sneak through a tunnel into enemy territory and kidnap an Israeli officer in order to exchange him for Palestinian prisoners. Although things go smoothly, the whole operation is a flop. Why? Because it was dark and they could not see that the officer was dark-skinned. When the group leader realises that the prisoner is of Ethiopian origin, he knows that all their efforts are for nothing.

Then the group enters into a long discussion on how to convince the Israelis to exchange him for fewer Palestinian prisoners, but end up convinced that the Israelis will give them nothing in return for him, and even he will not believe that the Israeli army and government care for him. They only have one problem; what to do with this good-for-nothing prisoner, without hurting his feelings. They finally decide to release him.

The officer does not believe that even Hamas does not want him and tries to convince his captors that even though he is a dark-skinned Israeli, he is valuable because he is not a mere soldier, he is an officer, and an important one. They are not convinced. One of the group tells him that he should thank God he is not a Druze. He asks them for a lift but they refuse to drop him to........

© Middle East Monitor