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August 6, 2009

Gay Israel

Netanyahu Beit Paz.jpg
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If 26 percent of the religious and 27 percent of the Arabs say we’re not perverts, you can say we’ve achieved something.” — Yaniv Weizman (pictured above), head of Tel Aviv’s gay youth organization (via 46% of Israelis Believe Homosexuality “A Perversion”/Tikun Olam

In what must be a challenging image in Israel, this photo — issued by the Israeli government press office — offers Netanyahu the hawk, the man’s man, visiting the Tel Aviv gay youth center, Beit Paz, where two people were murdered last week. Notable for me is the simultaneous intimacy and impersonality of Bibi lightly touching the long bare arm.

Call it face-to-face with a macho society.

(image: Israeli Government Press Office, August 6, 2008 in Tel Aviv)

  • ratfood

    The photo seems quite disconcerting. Not only is Netanyahu shaking hands with a man outside his line of vision, he is not meeting the gaze of the man directly in front of him whose face is only inches away. Instead, he appears to be looking at the person off-camera whose hand appears on the right.
    Probably not an unusual sort of multitasking for a politician but one rarely sees a photo that conveys their seeming detachment so clearly.

  • Richard Silverstein

    Netanyahu is the ultimate hypocrite because members of his own governing coalition have called homosexuality a “perversion.” The photo is a perfect encapsulation of Bibi’s fragmented political personna.

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