Thursday, September 29, 2005

The theft of the culture is no less offensive than the theft of the land. Here the New York Times speaks about Shawarma and falafil and Arabic bread as "authentic Israeli food." What do you say to that? Now I am not a nationalist purist; I am not even a nationalist. I in fact prefer to refer to many aspects of the Arab culture, like food here, as "Middle East" rather than Arab because what we assume is purely Arab (or what Lebanonese assume to be purely "Lebanonese") is really the product of the contributions by Arabs, Armenians, Assyrians, Kurds, Greeks, and by Muslims, Christians, Jews, and others, and by the interactions between different population groups and different ethnicities). But to make it "authentic Israeli"? Really. No, New York Times. David Ben Gurion did not bring the recipe of Shawirma with him from Russia. Not to my knowledge anyway. The Palestinians had their own culture befor their homeland was taken away from them.