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Reprinted from sultanknish.blogspot.com.
The Gaza flotilla and the flytilla may have been failures, but they were also missed opportunities for Israel. It’s no secret that a portion of Israel’s tourist trade comes from “Protest Tourism.” From philosophy students and poetry PhD’s who want a chance to visit the Holy Land, throw some rocks at a soldier and have their pictures taken with AK-47 wielding terrorists. And it’s time that the Israeli tourist industry took their business seriously.
Rather than profiling them and giving them the heave ho at the airport, why not develop special tourism packages catering to their needs. Happily one company, Outraged Protest Tours, is already on it.
By the first quarter of 2012, Outraged Protest Tours expects to be able to offer angry entitled brats a choice of three tour packages in Israel.
1. The Rachel Corrie
You’re angry at your parents. You’re angry at the world. You’re still angry at Bush. One time you saw a PBS documentary on Gaza and you said, “Man, are those people angry. But in a really deep and spiritual way.”
Pack your hemp sandals, your 259 dollar sunglasses and get ready to fill your Flickr account with photos of underprivileged children.
Take off from San Francisco International Airport in a remodeled Tupolev Tu-114 aircraft that smells like gasoline and cow manure. As your body tries to decide whether it should pass out from the fumes or throw up from the turbulence, you will relish knowing that you have left behind your comfortable life and are experiencing the agony of being in the Third World. Your ticket price of 3000 dollars will be a small price to pay for the insights from this experience that you will be able to share on Tumblr.
You land at Ben Gurion airport, after three hours going through customs, where you will be encouraged to yell “Power to the People” slogans at officials who will pretend not to understand what you are saying. If you cannot think of any slogans to yell, a booklet of slogans handwritten by a committee that includes Noam Chomsky, Tony Kushner and Norman Finkelstein (19.95) will be provided for you.
Accommodations will be provided inside a half-collapsed house with an Israeli bulldozer outside. With six to a room, your job will be to prevent the bulldozer from knocking over the house. At unpredictable times during the night, the bulldozer will start up, and then you will be expected to run out of the house, screaming and waving your hands, while shouting political slogans at it. The bulldozer will then usually stop. If it does not, you will be expected to lie in the mud while contemplating the geopolitics of the whole thing. If anyone asks you to leave and go to a bar with them for a pint because the world is ending, you will know this to be a trick. As bars are against Islam.
Sometimes during the night, men will come through the tunnels in the house, carrying mortar rounds and IED’s. You will be given 15 minutes to pose for pictures with them. These will look really good on your Facebook and your friends who just went skiing or to build homes in Africa will be really jealous.
After three days of this ($4999) while drinking stale water and eating old pita ($215.44) you will be able to say that you participated in the revolutionary struggle against Zionism and for weapons smuggling tunnels. You may even get a PhD thesis out of this, or at least a foreign correspondent post with Time magazine, which means you will be able to do this sort of thing full time. And even get paid for it.
2. The Alice Walker
You are a very deep person. People tell you this all the time, even when you don’t prompt them. Often you wish that you had been born earlier so that you could have participated in the great protest movements of the past. You write outraged poems about many things which to your shame occasionally rhyme a little too well.
Deep in your deep self, you hate Israel, Coca Cola, Nuclear Power, Country Music, McDonalds, Organized Religion, People Who Don’t Recycle and Republicans in no particular order. If you are English, then you hate these things too, but not as much as Tony Blair and the Daily Mail.
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