It's Worse Out There for Israel Than You Think

A few decades ago, I remember a TV preacher who pointed out that once anyone left the United States, anti-Israel sentiment was rife. We in the United States had little idea of what was out there. He was right. The full extent of this insulation is not appreciated by us Americans. We live under an envelope as it were, aggravated by our usual monolingualism.

I speak a little Spanish – with emphasis on the word little – but it is enough for me to step outside the envelope and to become aware of phenomena that most Americans are unaware of, but which hold sway over hundreds of millions across the planet.

One phenomenon is Club Deportivo Palestino (Palestinian Sports Club), abbreviated CD Palestino, in the Santiago area of Chile.

The soccer team was founded in 1920 among members of the Palestinian community in Chile at that time. By the 1950s, it had turned professional; and is now headquartered in a municipal stadium in a suburb of Santiago, Chile’s capital. It has won some national championships, and played in international tournaments, but overall its record has been mediocre at best, Chile’s version of the San Diego Padres.

Yet, it is this team which wins international headlines.  Why?

Because the team has totally identified itself with the Palestinian cause.

The Palestinians in Chile are rather prosperous, and over-represented in the halls of power. They trace their roots in Chile to the end of the 19th century. Central Chile has a Mediterranean climate much like the land they left. So, the Christians of Bethlehem, Beit Jala, Beit Sahour, and Beit Safafa (now in the eastern side of Jerusalem) started moving to Chile. These Christians were fleeing the predations of the Muslim Turks. The did not want their sons drafted into a Muslim army.

Though initially subjected to prejudice in Chile, within two generations, they had become rich and powerful enough to dissuade the Chilean government from voting for a partition of Palestine to create a Jewish state in 1947. Since then, their power has only increased.  And the soccer team they formed in 1920, CD Palestino, has become a lightning rod to focus anti-Zionism throughout South America.

Three years ago, a controversy erupted when their team rolled out a jersey where the number 1 was replaced by a map of Palestine, which erased all of Israel. Only when Chile’s Jews complained, was the team forced to stop wearing the jersey; but you can still buy the offending shirt on their official website (Click Here).

Members of the team visit the contested areas, and the whole team has recently made a team visit to the Mideast to the Palestinian area.

Needless to say, the team has a strong following not only among Palestinians, but across the Arab world in general.

Recently, the team has engaged in a project – to which anyone can donate – where they will collect soil from the regions of Palestine, and use it for their soccer field.  As a symbol of their support for Palestine.
CD Palestino originally made these videos in English, Spanish, and Arabic to collect donations. The Arabic video was later taken down. Yes, you heard that right: English. CD Palestino has become somewhat of an international spectacle, as well as a sports team. So they now publish in English for maximum effect.

(Spanish)

 

But more surprising is that these Palestinian-Chileans are 99% Christian (a mix of Roman Catholic, and  Antiochian Orthodox Christian).  Yet, this CD Palestino English language page displays a picture of the Muslim Dome of the Rock.

Now, given their Christian identity, one wonders why they have embraced Islamic symbols, especially since the ancestors of most Palestinian-Chileans fled Muslim tyranny. But the effect is not limited to sports, and I have noticed Palestinian-Chileans using Islamic imagery elsewhere.

Screenshot: English language page on website
http://www.palestino.cl/en/club

At games, their fans shoot off flares in the green, black, white, and red colors of the Palestinian flag. Some fans have even embraced the Intifada.


The elites of Chile bow down to the Arab cause. Check out this journey of Chilean politicians in their visit to the contested areas. [Note: Camila Vallejo was leader of the Chilean Student protests of 2011.]  At (0:20), they present Palestinian spokesowman, Hanan Ashrawi, one of the infamous Palestino t-shirts. [Forgive my weak Spanish. I could only translate the titles at the beginning and end.]

There is nothing like this in America.  Little kids in Chile root for Palestino, as can be seen here where youngsters field offical CD Palestino shirts and say: Tino Tino Palestino!

This has infected the whole country. The only equivalent might be the influence of pro-Israel groups in the USA.

The Palestinian community is to Chile what the Jewish community is to the U.S. – Gabriel Zalisnek, then president of Chile’s Jewish Federation  - JPOST

But the difference is that pro-Israel lobbies also draw support from an American base: evangelical Christians and Jews. Chile’s Palestinians have foisted this on a Latin people with no reason to support an Arab cause, and every reason to reject it. It is unnatural, but pervasive.

The Jewish community of Chile filed a legal complaint on Friday over alleged virulent antisemitism at a soccer match on June 8, between the Estadio Israelita Maccabi team and Club Palestino as part of the amateur “Superliga.” …

The referees reported that they were also attacked and that a Palestinian fan came onto the pitch brandishing a Palestinian flag which he shoved in an injured Jewish player’s face yelling “this is a flag, not like yours, I clean my ass with yours, we’re gonna kill you, f***ing Jew.”  …
Several days after the match, graffiti was found on the walls of Club Palestino with the words “Arab terrorists,” “Palestine doesn’t exist” and “Am Yisrael Chai” next to a Star of David. - JPOST [Please read this link to see how bad it has gotten in Chile.]

 To be fair, there is an Israeli team – Betar – which has been known for its violent Jewish supremacism, but CD Palestino has become a worldwide phenomenon beyond Chile.

Chile, which is the shining star of South America, has been lost to the Palestinian cause. Americans have no clue about what is happening in South America. With the exception of Brazil, which has a very strong evangelical movement, the rest of South America may be on the same track.

America’s disdain for mixing sports and politics, along with its disdain for soccer, has insulted us from some other astounding news.

In Scotland, fans of the Celtic soccer team hounded fans of a visiting Israeli team and created a scandal when they raised Palestinian flags during a match between the Celtics and Israel’s Hapoel Be’er Sheva. When the team was fined by UEFA (the Union of European Football Association), the fans defiantly matched the fine by crowd funding and, with the surplus, raised money for Palestinian causes.

Scottish parliament discusses recognition of Palestinian state – 2015 – Times of Israel

Some might say the Celtic fans are from an ethnic Irish Catholic background in Scotland, and not a true barometer of general Scottish feeling, but how do you explain a Palestinian flag flying over Glasgow City hall then, or this show of Palestinian solidarity from the Scottish National Party, or the display of Palestinian support in Edinburgh when another Israeli team visited? This insanity isn’t just Hibernian, the Caledonians are in on it as well.

 

What should astound everyone is that the Palestinians released a thank you video for Celtic Fans’ defiance. The blonde at 33 seconds, with the Scottish burr, is cute. Am I allowed to say that any more? I doubt she is an Arab, though it looks like the child she is carrying might be half-Arab. William Wallace must be rolling over in his grave.

Of course, in 2009, Spain had a minor scandal when an Israeli basketball team was greeted with Palestinian flags.  This protest during one of the Gaza wars is from the Netherlands.  Many of the protestors may be Muslims, but a lot of this crowd is native European.  From France, again, much of this crowd is native-French.  This is from England, where they call for the eradication of Israel. (From the River to the Sea, Palestine will be free.) There are a lot of Saxons mixed in the with Muslims.

Pro-Israel Government Policies Don't Speak For Most Canadians – Huffington Post

It seems the envelope ends at the 49th parallel. America has pro-Palestinian protests, too; but as a rule, they are miniscule compared to Europe; and not indicative of general American opinion.

I do not mind criticism of Israel. I have made strong criticism myself; but what distinguishes the European and Chileans varieties is that they often call for the eradication of Israel; and that is where I draw the line.
Whatever one feels about Israel’s policies, Israel does have a right to exist. The preacher was right. Outside of America, the worldview is very hostile to Israel.

Mike Konrad is the pen name of an American who wishes he had availed himself more fully of the opportunity to learn Spanish better in high school, lo those many decades ago. He runs a website about the Arabs in South America at http://latinarabia.com, and a website about small computers at http://thetinydesktop.com

A few decades ago, I remember a TV preacher who pointed out that once anyone left the United States, anti-Israel sentiment was rife. We in the United States had little idea of what was out there. He was right. The full extent of this insulation is not appreciated by us Americans. We live under an envelope as it were, aggravated by our usual monolingualism.

I speak a little Spanish – with emphasis on the word little – but it is enough for me to step outside the envelope and to become aware of phenomena that most Americans are unaware of, but which hold sway over hundreds of millions across the planet.

One phenomenon is Club Deportivo Palestino (Palestinian Sports Club), abbreviated CD Palestino, in the Santiago area of Chile.

The soccer team was founded in 1920 among members of the Palestinian community in Chile at that time. By the 1950s, it had turned professional; and is now headquartered in a municipal stadium in a suburb of Santiago, Chile’s capital. It has won some national championships, and played in international tournaments, but overall its record has been mediocre at best, Chile’s version of the San Diego Padres.

Yet, it is this team which wins international headlines.  Why?

Because the team has totally identified itself with the Palestinian cause.

The Palestinians in Chile are rather prosperous, and over-represented in the halls of power. They trace their roots in Chile to the end of the 19th century. Central Chile has a Mediterranean climate much like the land they left. So, the Christians of Bethlehem, Beit Jala, Beit Sahour, and Beit Safafa (now in the eastern side of Jerusalem) started moving to Chile. These Christians were fleeing the predations of the Muslim Turks. The did not want their sons drafted into a Muslim army.

Though initially subjected to prejudice in Chile, within two generations, they had become rich and powerful enough to dissuade the Chilean government from voting for a partition of Palestine to create a Jewish state in 1947. Since then, their power has only increased.  And the soccer team they formed in 1920, CD Palestino, has become a lightning rod to focus anti-Zionism throughout South America.

Three years ago, a controversy erupted when their team rolled out a jersey where the number 1 was replaced by a map of Palestine, which erased all of Israel. Only when Chile’s Jews complained, was the team forced to stop wearing the jersey; but you can still buy the offending shirt on their official website (Click Here).

Members of the team visit the contested areas, and the whole team has recently made a team visit to the Mideast to the Palestinian area.

Needless to say, the team has a strong following not only among Palestinians, but across the Arab world in general.

Recently, the team has engaged in a project – to which anyone can donate – where they will collect soil from the regions of Palestine, and use it for their soccer field.  As a symbol of their support for Palestine.
CD Palestino originally made these videos in English, Spanish, and Arabic to collect donations. The Arabic video was later taken down. Yes, you heard that right: English. CD Palestino has become somewhat of an international spectacle, as well as a sports team. So they now publish in English for maximum effect.

(Spanish)

 

But more surprising is that these Palestinian-Chileans are 99% Christian (a mix of Roman Catholic, and  Antiochian Orthodox Christian).  Yet, this CD Palestino English language page displays a picture of the Muslim Dome of the Rock.

Now, given their Christian identity, one wonders why they have embraced Islamic symbols, especially since the ancestors of most Palestinian-Chileans fled Muslim tyranny. But the effect is not limited to sports, and I have noticed Palestinian-Chileans using Islamic imagery elsewhere.

Screenshot: English language page on website
http://www.palestino.cl/en/club

At games, their fans shoot off flares in the green, black, white, and red colors of the Palestinian flag. Some fans have even embraced the Intifada.


The elites of Chile bow down to the Arab cause. Check out this journey of Chilean politicians in their visit to the contested areas. [Note: Camila Vallejo was leader of the Chilean Student protests of 2011.]  At (0:20), they present Palestinian spokesowman, Hanan Ashrawi, one of the infamous Palestino t-shirts. [Forgive my weak Spanish. I could only translate the titles at the beginning and end.]

There is nothing like this in America.  Little kids in Chile root for Palestino, as can be seen here where youngsters field offical CD Palestino shirts and say: Tino Tino Palestino!

This has infected the whole country. The only equivalent might be the influence of pro-Israel groups in the USA.

The Palestinian community is to Chile what the Jewish community is to the U.S. – Gabriel Zalisnek, then president of Chile’s Jewish Federation  - JPOST

But the difference is that pro-Israel lobbies also draw support from an American base: evangelical Christians and Jews. Chile’s Palestinians have foisted this on a Latin people with no reason to support an Arab cause, and every reason to reject it. It is unnatural, but pervasive.

The Jewish community of Chile filed a legal complaint on Friday over alleged virulent antisemitism at a soccer match on June 8, between the Estadio Israelita Maccabi team and Club Palestino as part of the amateur “Superliga.” …

The referees reported that they were also attacked and that a Palestinian fan came onto the pitch brandishing a Palestinian flag which he shoved in an injured Jewish player’s face yelling “this is a flag, not like yours, I clean my ass with yours, we’re gonna kill you, f***ing Jew.”  …
Several days after the match, graffiti was found on the walls of Club Palestino with the words “Arab terrorists,” “Palestine doesn’t exist” and “Am Yisrael Chai” next to a Star of David. - JPOST [Please read this link to see how bad it has gotten in Chile.]

 To be fair, there is an Israeli team – Betar – which has been known for its violent Jewish supremacism, but CD Palestino has become a worldwide phenomenon beyond Chile.

Chile, which is the shining star of South America, has been lost to the Palestinian cause. Americans have no clue about what is happening in South America. With the exception of Brazil, which has a very strong evangelical movement, the rest of South America may be on the same track.

America’s disdain for mixing sports and politics, along with its disdain for soccer, has insulted us from some other astounding news.

In Scotland, fans of the Celtic soccer team hounded fans of a visiting Israeli team and created a scandal when they raised Palestinian flags during a match between the Celtics and Israel’s Hapoel Be’er Sheva. When the team was fined by UEFA (the Union of European Football Association), the fans defiantly matched the fine by crowd funding and, with the surplus, raised money for Palestinian causes.

Scottish parliament discusses recognition of Palestinian state – 2015 – Times of Israel

Some might say the Celtic fans are from an ethnic Irish Catholic background in Scotland, and not a true barometer of general Scottish feeling, but how do you explain a Palestinian flag flying over Glasgow City hall then, or this show of Palestinian solidarity from the Scottish National Party, or the display of Palestinian support in Edinburgh when another Israeli team visited? This insanity isn’t just Hibernian, the Caledonians are in on it as well.

 

What should astound everyone is that the Palestinians released a thank you video for Celtic Fans’ defiance. The blonde at 33 seconds, with the Scottish burr, is cute. Am I allowed to say that any more? I doubt she is an Arab, though it looks like the child she is carrying might be half-Arab. William Wallace must be rolling over in his grave.

Of course, in 2009, Spain had a minor scandal when an Israeli basketball team was greeted with Palestinian flags.  This protest during one of the Gaza wars is from the Netherlands.  Many of the protestors may be Muslims, but a lot of this crowd is native European.  From France, again, much of this crowd is native-French.  This is from England, where they call for the eradication of Israel. (From the River to the Sea, Palestine will be free.) There are a lot of Saxons mixed in the with Muslims.

Pro-Israel Government Policies Don't Speak For Most Canadians – Huffington Post

It seems the envelope ends at the 49th parallel. America has pro-Palestinian protests, too; but as a rule, they are miniscule compared to Europe; and not indicative of general American opinion.

I do not mind criticism of Israel. I have made strong criticism myself; but what distinguishes the European and Chileans varieties is that they often call for the eradication of Israel; and that is where I draw the line.
Whatever one feels about Israel’s policies, Israel does have a right to exist. The preacher was right. Outside of America, the worldview is very hostile to Israel.

Mike Konrad is the pen name of an American who wishes he had availed himself more fully of the opportunity to learn Spanish better in high school, lo those many decades ago. He runs a website about the Arabs in South America at http://latinarabia.com, and a website about small computers at http://thetinydesktop.com

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