Anger at Dubai TV Interview with Rabbi/Chef About 'Israeli Cuisine'

Published January 27th, 2022 - 07:55 GMT
Interview with Israeli chef on Dubai TV
The official Dubai TV hosted the Israeli chef to discuss "the Israeli cuisine". (Twitter)

In a segment to discuss global cuisines of countries represented in the Expo 2020 held currently in Dubai, the official Dubai TV hosted an Israeli chef to "discuss the Israeli cuisine."

Even though normalized relations between the UAE and Israel are quite new, with the UAE recognizing Israel for the first time only in September 2020, after the Donald Trump-brokered Abraham Accords, ties between the two nations seem beyond friendly.

Translation: "They stole the land, houses, places of worship, and food recipes. We attributed this to our weaknesses and divisions. But now the TV channel is being complicit and calls Palestinians 'native people"? I thought they were talking about red Indians or the people of Upper Volta."

To show the close relationship between the UAE and Israel, the state-funded Dubai TV hosted an Israeli chef in a segment dedicated to highlighting countries taking part in the Dubai Expo 2020. 

The guest who was introduced as Israeli chef is Rabbi Levi Duchman, the head of the Jewish Community Center of UAE, who was the first Rabbi ever in the UAE. 

Online commentators expressed a variety of reactions to the interview, including ones who highlighted the decades-long Israeli practice of appropriating Palestinian dishes, such as Hummus, Falafel, Shawerma, and others, which are often referred to as Israeli dishes by Israeli media.

Translation: "Dubai is bringing a Rabbi to tell people about Israeli cuisine."

Moreover, some online users protested the use of words during the interview, where the screen read "The Israeli cuisine consists of dished by native people in addition to ones brought by Jewish immigrants to Israel," particularly how the phrasing avoided naming Palestinians.

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