Treading a fine line between Jaffa and Bat Yam – UPDATED

Last night I posted one of my “Izzie in HolyLand” pieces. It was about the collective punishment Israel rewarded the West Bank village of Awarta, after the murder of the Fogel family from Itamar. In the post, I made Izzie have a nightmare about the same treatment Bat Yam would have had if a murder took place in nearby Jaffa. Something that would never happen, of course.

That piece of satire was written with a lot of anger, a lot of frustration.

It wasn’t the first time. I’ve written about the racism in Bat Yam with similar anger, when demos were held against Arabs dating Jewish girls.

It’s kind of cliche to say it, but life has a funny way of making you think twice about things, of making you smile. For the past week or so, I’ve been driving on my way to work past signs that were pointing to someone’s wedding. Very common in Israel. Never paid much attention to it. I can’t put my finger on it, but something about this particular sign stuck in my mind – without actually reading it. So, today I took a closer look.
Treading a fine line between Jaffa and Bat Yam - UPDATEDIt says: To Basma and Yossi’s wedding.

Basma. An Arab name. And Yossi. Doesn’t get more Jewish than Yossi. But then again, you never know with all the nicknames people take. Still…

This sign was put up on HaGvul Street. Hagvul means “the border”in Hebrew. Which it is – Hagvul Street is the border between Tel Aviv-Jaffa and Bat Yam. On the left of this picture is Jaffa. On the right – Bat Yam.

The next sign further down the road had the arrow pointing to the right, towards Bat Yam.

I would have loved to be a fly on the wall at that reception.


Since the posting of this article I’ve found out about two more “signs” like these, with different names but still with Arab and Jewish names, the same font and same orange arrow.
This is most probably some sort of campaign – but it’s not yet clear who is behind it and what the motives are.