Saturday, June 17, 2006

Ghanaian Player Waves Israeli Flag In Celebration (?!?)

While celebrating a stunning 2-0 victory over the Czechs, a Ghanaian player triumphantly waved the Israeli flag. It was more clear on television as he was waving the flag directly at the camera, but it is clearly visible in the photos below:

I do not know why he waved the Israeli flag, but it was inspiring and reassuring in light of recent pronouncements from the Iranian president, as were the protests outside the stadiums where the Iranian team played and the defiant display of the pre-revolutionary Iranian flag by free Iranian women.

UPDATE: Mystery solved. Via, this article at Haaretz explains that the player, John Pentsil, is a player on Hapoel Tel Aviv, and is one of three Ghanaian players who play for Israeli clubs.

Bagel Blogger also saw the celebration. He notes that showing the flag has released the bile from the anti-semitic side of the web:

You can make the cross of christ, you can praise allah on your knees but don't dare show an Israeli flag! Even if its portrayal has no individual deep significance. Some folks never do see past their own hatred.

That Pentsil waved the flag is still reassuring: he was under no obligation to show support for Israel at all, and it probably would have been easier for him not to do so. That he showed gratitude and love for the embattled country where he makes his living showed real class.

UPDATE: More bile has been released by the Ghanaian player's actions. Thought it seems a small thing, what he did was in fact quite brave: it was kind, unnecessary, and the reaction of anti-semitic muslims was depressingly predictable. Details at Gateway Pundit, Rantings of a Sandmonkey, and Big Pharoah.

UPDATE 2: I have been remiss in updating this post to report the apology made by the Ghanaian Football Association on behalf of the player. Atlas Shrugs is unamused. It was brave and decent of Pentsil to have waved the Israeli flag; that he has suffered this much grief for a simple display of gratitude proves that this display was not really simple at all.

Also at Atlas Shrugs, a report that Egypt has become utterly hysterical over Pentsil's tribute:
Some papers described Pantsil as a "Mossad agent", others said "an Israeli had paid him to do it" but the most elaborate theory was offered by the top-selling state-owned daily Al-Ahram.

Since 1979, Egypt has received on average over $2,000,000,000 per year in foreign aid from the U.S. government.

Rantings Of A Sandmonkey has more, including numerous comments. Beirut Spring discusses this kerfuffle directly from Ghana.

Technorati tags: | | | |

No comments: