By Slava Tsukerman

Last week two photographs unexpectedly got into center of attention of the Ukrainian and Russian Internet. The photographs were taken at the Kiev Olympic stadium several minutes before the soccer match between Ukrainian and Israeli teams had started. According to the tradition teams took to the field accompanied by the local Ukrainean children. And at that moment unexpectedly a terrible storm started. It turned cold, the wind began to blow and torrents of water fell down.

The photographs showed the Israeli’s reaction to this situation, and the Ukrainian’s lack of reaction.

Ukrainian team.

Israeli team.

It’s interesting how readers of the Russian blogs commented on the photos.

To be fair I must admit that most of commenters praised Israelis for their care of children and criticized Ukrainians for obvious lack of even considering such care.

A slightly smaller group of commenters explained the athlete’s behavior by the difference of the climate in two countries. According to those readers, Israelis consider rain to be a danger, and for Ukrainians it is something not to worry about. Some representatives of the group even praised Ukrainian athletes for bringing up children more hardy, unlike sissified Israelis.

The smallest and the most emotional group of commenters considered Israeli’s behavior to be a pre–rehearsed propaganda action.

Here is one of the most typical comments made by a representative of this group, a woman, named Maria Kazin:

Can you immagine all seasoned members of a soccer team to do simultaniosely a striptease in order to dress other people’s children? Surely they had an agreement. So do not tell me tales.

We must be able to distinguish a well-planned campaign from reality.

Those who praise Israelies either have hallucinations – or they are paid agents of the Jews. I never noticed a special love of Jews to other people’s children. To their own – yes. For them, the whole world is divided into us and them. For them Ukrainian children are goyim by halakha. If you are not a Jew, you are by definition have lower qualities.  They live better than the others people because they are good at manipulating naive goyim in their favor.”

EDITOR: We winced at the paragraph immediately above, because it does have an element of truth about. Yes, like with other groups, there are those who perceive the world only as about themselves, their family and their tribe.  We don’t have to go far to see that in the USA.   But this is certainly not true for most Israelis as it is not true of most Americans and most people here in Lancaster.

As for the athletes, this was a natural reaction of men in general and fathers in particular.  And as one or two acted, the others likely quickly followed.

We do not mean to criticize the Ukrainians.   Indeed, different cultures react differently.   We are confident they are as loving of their children as the Israelis.  Or as are we Americans.  (Except when it comes to paying more taxes.)

Updated: August 28, 2013 — 4:24 am

1 Comment

  1. The notion that the Israeli team somehow conspired to make the Ukranian team look insensitive is ludicrous. Maria Kazin’s scandalous quote merely demonstrates the lengths to which prejudiced individuals will go to discredit commendable behavior when it challenges their own pre-conceived notions about how a minority (in this case Jews) should behave.

    There is nothing truthful about her egregious statement and I’m shocked Newslanc’s editor would claim there was.

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