I’m honestly not sure whether this story is funny or depressing.
A vulture tagged by scientists at Tel Aviv University has strayed into Saudi Arabian territory, where it was promptly arrested on suspicion of being a Mossad spy, Israeli and Saudi media reported Tuesday.
The bird was found in a rural area of the country wearing a transmitter and a leg bracelet bearing the words ‘Tel Aviv University’, according to the reports, which surfaced first in the Israeli daily Ma’ariv.
Although these tags indicate that the bird was part of a long-term research project into migration patters, residents and local reporters told Saudi Arabia’s Al-Weeam newspaper that the matter seemed to be a ‘Zionist plot.’
The accusations went viral, with hundreds of posts on Arabic-language websites and forums claiming that the ‘Zionists’ had trained these birds for espionage.
This has gone well beyond petty hate into full-blown anti-semitic insanity. We’ve seen this particular mental illness before, though, and we know very well where it leads. It’s very tempting to poke fun at the ignorant Muslims in Saudi Arabia, but their ignorance isn’t their fault and it doesn’t exist by accident. The Saudi government, assisted by hundreds if not thousands of Imams, foster it deliberately and with all malice aforethought. They have a purpose, an end-goal for the hate they stoke until it burns low and hot in the breasts of people who have never even met a Jew.
We don’t want to see that end-goal, not ever. So we’d better do what we can to extinguish that hate now, before it flares into something we’ll need our soldiers to put out.