In the wake of the terrorist attacks on Brussels, a hotline was established. One of their responsibilities is to coordinate the transportation of foreign victims to their countries. You would think that these workers would feel a kinship with the Jewish state, as we have endured decades of similar attacks. And you would think that they might understand at this point that the issue is not Israel/Palestine, but radical Islam.
However, when one caller, a volunteer for Antwerp’s Jewish Coordination Committee, called in to arrange flights home for Israeli victims, he was in for an anti-Semitic shock. And we have the recording, albeit in Flemish. But you can clearly hear the worker insist that he not use Israel, but Palestine.
Below is a translation in English.
XXX: Good afternoon, my name is XXX, I am a volunteer in the Jewish coordination committee of Antwerp. We are contacted by persons… we have 2 persons of the Jewish community that were hurt in the attacks in the airport
Crisis Centre: Yes sir
XXX: They are prepared to be transported back to Israel. Our volunteers are busy with it and take care of everything but we received information from the hospital that we need special papers from the police that they can be released. Is this correct and to who should we ask that? Can you tell me more about that?
CC: That is effectively.. I will take a look. So … they go back to Palestine.
XXX: Not Palestine, Israel.
CC: Yes, but that was before Palestine, of course. OK
Just so our readers will know, that is a lie. There has never been an Arab nation called Palestine. The Turks controlled the land of Israel for 500 years until the British in 1917. They asked the UN to solve the problem in 1946, and in 1947, the UN voted for two states to be established, an Arab one and a Jewish. The Jews rejoiced, the Arabs rejected. Ironically at time, Jews associated with the term Palestinian, and most Arabs rejected it as ‘Zionist.’
XXX: Could you repeat that again, please? What is the name?
CC: That … Palestine.
XXX: Can I get your name, please?
Cc: Of course, Zakaria.
XXX: And you know only Palestine?
XXX: You don’t know Israel, only Palestine?
CC: I know the Jews went to there, that Palestine received (opvangen) them and that there is a war between Israel and Palestine, of course. And the occupation… that’s what’s on the news of course.
XXX: Can you help me with the question I have, or not?
CC: Naturally, of course. Thus they go back to Palestine and ask that they could get an attestation. Voila, it is noted.
XXX: Can I have you name again, I didn’t understand it well.
CC: That is correct.
XXX: Zakaria what? What is your last name?
CC: I am not obliged to give it. (ArutzSheva)
The Jerusalem Post writes, “Michael Freilich, the editor- in-chief of Joods Actueel, said it ‘defies imagination’ that a Belgian state employee would display the anti-Israel behavior that is commonplace in Arab countries.
“He called for punishing the operator instead of issuing the ‘standard apology.’”
One of the things that have learned here in Israel is that not matter how evil radical Islamists become, anti-Semitism is here to stay.
UPDATE: Reports are surfacing that the operator has been fired.