Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Miss Israel, Miss Lebanon Selfie Causes Backlash

Politicizing sports, beauty and art events- how pathetic. But it happens all the time, and usually involves Israel. In this case it's the Miss Universe contest in Miami, Florida, where a selfie taken by Miss Israel (Doron Matalon) with Miss Lebanon (Saly Greige) has caused a firestorm of criticism. Of course it's the Lebanese who are up in arms, some want her to lose her title for daring to be photographed with an Israeli, and it has Greige trying to defend herself in a not-so positive way.
Jumping to her own defense, Greige said on social media that Miss Israel -Doron Matalon - had “repeatedly” attempted to take photos with her, effectively “photobombing” the selfie.

“From the first day I arrived at the Miss Universe pageant I was very careful not to take any pictures with Miss Israel, who tried repeatedly to take pictures with me,” she said, according to the el-Nashra fan entertainment website.

“While I was preparing with Miss Slovania and Miss Japan to get our photograph taken, Miss Israel jumped in and took a selfie with her phone and posted it on social media.”

She continued: "This is what happened and I hope to have your full support in the Miss Universe contest".
Greige even cropped Miss Israel out of the photo.

Matalon, on the other hand, took the high road. She claims she didn't photobomb Miss Lebanon, that "it wasn't a surprise."  She just wanted to reach out, even for a moment.

"I hope for change, and I hope for peace between us; even just for three weeks, even just between me and her," Matalon said.
"That's what we need to remember: we represent the country and the people, not the government and not the political issues."

"It doesn't surprise me, but it still makes me sad. Too bad you can not put the hostility out of the game, only for three weeks of an experience of a lifetime."

She's right.

Lebanon's hatred for Israel stems from the 2006 war against Hezbollah (a terrorist organization) where 1,200 people were killed versus 160 Israelis. Lebanese casualties were mostly civilians, Israel mostly soldiers. Important to note, Hezbollah started the conflict by firing rockets at Israeli border towns.

Source:  Al Arabiya

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