First it was the hummus war. Then it was the tabouleh war. Now get ready for the keffiyeh war.
A self-described “Jewish music label and promotion company” in the United States has begun marketing a version of the traditional Arab headdress complete with blue embroidered stars of David, the symbol of the state of Israel.
Shemspeed, based in Brooklyn, New York, began selling the headdress in mid-January, The Jerusalem Post reported last weekend.
Erez Safar, the company’s founder and director, said the scarf, which also bears the Hebrew slogan “Am Israeli Chai” (“The Nation of Israel Lives”), was created “for the unity it creates among Jews”.
The keffiyeh has been worn across the Arab world for centuries, but it became a symbol of Palestinian nationalism during the Arab Revolt in the 1930s.
It achieved even greater prominence in the 1960s, when the Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat adopted it as a personal trademark and it became a symbol of Palestinian resistance.
In an interview with the Post, Mr Safar insisted that Jews have as much right to don the keffiyeh as Arabs.
“I think people tend to view Jews as Eastern European and often forget that Arab Jews are also a massive part of our nation,” he told the Israeli newspaper.
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