Small number of fans create big problems

February 13, 2013 by J-Wire
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Betar Australia has responded to an article published in “The Age” slamming soccer club Beitar Jerusalem’s fans for their racist behaviour.

Beitar fans meet the players

Beitar fans meet the players

Beitar issued a news release which states: “The article on Beitar Jerusalem published is a manipulation of the true reality in Israel. This small fragment of football club fans were condemned by the majority of fans, the management of the club and the Prime Minister (and leader of the Likud party), Benjamin Netanyahu.
Betar Australia GAP year participants as representatives of World Betar, last week met with the two Muslim players and offered them our support for their continued participation in the club.
Ruth Pollard writes that the Betar Jerusalem F.C. is ‘closely associated with Israel’s ruling Likud party.”’ The Age readers should be aware that Beitar Jerusalem and Likud are almost entirely separate entities… they are about as connected as the Collingwood F.C. is to the Labour party. Betar was created 90 years ago in reaction to the wave of racism in Europe, linking Betar and racism is both insulting and absurd.”

The Age article revealed that the soccer club had recently joined every other cloub in Israel by having Muslims on its playing staff. The Age reported on the strong anti-Muslim attitude of the club’s fans each time on of their new acquisitions was on the ball. The behaviour of these fans has also been condemned by ex-Prime Minister, Ehud Olmert.

Jonathan Markowitz, Betar Australia’s Rosh Hanagah Artzit told J-Wire: “Last week our Shnatties and madrichim from Betar Israel met with the Beitar Jerusalem Soccer Team. Our Shnatties presented the two Muslim players with a portrait of Jabotinsky that had the quote “every man is a king.”

Jabotinsky wrote strongly against racism of all forms in many of his articles. It is most prominent in our ideological concept of ‘Hadar’ which states that every person is a prince, and so we should all treat one another with respect and dignity. Betar Australia continues to stand strongly against racism in all forms.


4 Responses to “Small number of fans create big problems”
  1. Liat Nagar says:

    Pollard is at it again. Her bias against Israel makes her one of the least professional journalists one could ever read. Every opportunity she can, she’s in there with a bitter and twisted take on things. She should remember all the taunts and abuse levelled at Australian aboriginal AFL players by parts of the crowd over time. And the image, which has become iconic, of Aboriginal St. Kilda (Vic) player, Nicky Winmer,baring his chest to the crowd at Collingwood Park and pointing at his own black skin, in defiance of their racism. Aboriginal Michael Long has also been very active in protesting and countering racism. Israel, just like other countries, has its share of racists. Perhaps Ruth Pollard expects more of Israelis than other peoples? That’s meant to be ironic.

  2. pam says:

    It was clear from the heading of the article that Ruth Pollard was determined to use this incident to reinforce the message that Israel is a racist country.

    All football teams, including Australia, have racist elements among their fans, but that doesn’t tar the whole country with the label of racist. Israel, being a vibrant democracy, is no worse than any other country in this respect.

    However, all its surrounding neighbours have openly racist governments, but I guess bigots who smear Israel on every occasion feel at liberty to ignore that. How many Israelis/Jews
    would play for an Islamic country and come out unscathed?

    • Shirlee says:

      Bear in mind Pam that Ruth Pollard is doing what Ruth Pollard does best, while she has a cushy life in Israel.

      • pam says:

        That’s right. Like most of the journalists covering the Middle East, they prefer to be based in Israel, and take advantage of its democratic principles, while working to undermine the country. Journalists rarely want to be in an Islamic country, because they know they have to be careful what they write, and could easily incur the displeasure of the ruling elites, with catastrophic consequences for their security.

        It’s safe to criticise Israel, as Israel is uber-tolerant – unlike the hellholes surrounding Israel.

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