Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Romeo & Juliet

A few days ago the southern Israel town of Kiryat Gat held an emergency city conference urging young Israeli girls NOT to date Bedouin boys living in nearby villages.

Reason being, according to the original story gleaned here, that girls have the habit of falling in love with the boys and then they leave home to co-habitate with their new beaus in their villages. No problem until the relationship goes south and then the boys won't let go. LITERALLY "until death do we part".
"One of the reasons for the conference was the 2006 murder of 16-year-old Mika Dabab, whose body was found burned near the Bedouin community of Rahat. An investigation revealed that Dabab was romantically involved with a young Rahat resident, and tried to break up with him several days before she was murdered. The young man refused, kidnapped her from a discotheque and murdered her."
Conference organizers showed attendees a film titled Sleeping with the Enemy and presented quotes they say appear in the Koran. Like: "a woman can be beaten as long as her bones are not broken and no blood is spilled."

The Bedouin response...
"'We in the Bedouin sector do not encourage romantic relations between Bedouins and Jews as well. It hurts our families just like it hurts the Jews. It causes a lot of difficult problems and internal conflicts which often end in violence,'" Rahat Mayor Talal al-Krenawi said in response to the Kiryat Gat conference."
I don't know what to think of the story or that conference. On the one hand, the conference smacks of blatant racism or prejudice or whatever you'd call it.

On the other, if this is a phenomenon, as the information disseminated at the conference suggests, how do you go about spreading the word and 'protecting' children?

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