Monday, August 19, 2013

Yet Another Example Of How Israel And Israelis Are Different

The Israeli national soccer team was playing a match at Kiev in the Ukraine, and the game made headlines in there and in many other parts of Europe for an interesting reason that had nothing to do with the final score.

As the national anthems were played prior to the game, groups of children wearing UNICEF t-shirts were allowed to stand with the players, something that's common in international matches. August can still be fairly chilly in the Ukraine, and the children were caught in a cold downpour soon after they came on the field.

As the pictures show, the Ukrainian players pretty much ignored the kids shivering in the rain and cold. The Israeli team immediately took off their warmup jackets and tried to shield the kids from the weather.

“I am glad we made the gesture and I hope that all the children returned home safely,” said Israeli soccer star Itay Shechter of the incident.

“When it began to rain during the anthems, we decided to take off our training jackets because we saw that the kids that were with us were freezing from the cold of the strong rain. We immediately decided to place the training jackets on the children so that they would feel a little more cozy and warmer,” another player Eitan Tibi added.

According to Yediot Ahronot the incident prompted media headlines in both Ukraine and Russia criticizing the Ukrainian team. ”The human reflex was to do what the Israeli players did,” wrote one newspaper according to Yediot.

The Israeli team lost the match two to nothing. But I think they won something more important than a soccer game.

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