JERUSALEM — An Israeli soccer club with an unofficial tradition of not signing Arab or Muslim players welcomed two Muslim-Chechen members Wednesday amid rising tensions from its fans.
Beitar Jerusalem has fans who are known for being hostile to Muslims and Arabs and who have opposed the Chechens’ arrival.
At a league game Saturday, some chanted anti-Muslim slogans and unfurled a sign protesting the arrival of Zaur Sadayev and Gabriel Kadiev. Three fans were arrested for the behavior, which drew widespread condemnation from ranks as senior as Israel’s president.
At a news conference shortly after their arrival, Sadayev and Kadiev seemed unfazed by the fans’ behavior as they donned their yellow and black Beitar jerseys.
“I’m happy I came here,” said Sadayev, a 23-year-old forward signed from FC Terek Grozny. “And I will please the fans with my game.”
Kadiev, a 19-year-old defender from the same team, said he was “not afraid” of playing in front of Beitar fans.
Granted, the 2 new players were NOT Israeli Arab non-Jews who make up over 30% of Israel’s population, but it’s a start as they condition their uneducated racist fans to learn to accept their global brothers and sisters.
Beitar fans have been punished in the past for displays similar to Saturday’s, and police beefed up security at a match Tuesday when Beitar played a team from the Arab town of Umm al-Fahm. At first, police decreed an empty stadium but then reneged.
Hundreds of police, some on horseback, patrolled inside and outside the stadium and said they would arrest anyone displaying racist behavior. No major incidents were reported, and 12 fans from both sides were banned from the game.
Highlighting the gravity of the fans’ behavior, Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat attended Wednesday’s news conference, seated near the two Chechen players. He denounced violence and racism.
Beitar coach Eli Cohen acknowledged the fans’ rowdiness but hoped the Chechens’ arrival might chart a new course for the team.
“I know there will be growing pains but I believe that this club will embark on a new journey and will change its image,” he said.
Johnny Punish is the founder and owner of VT. He is also a writer, global citizen eco-activist, visionary, musician, artist, entertainer, businessman, investor, life coach, and syndicated columnist. Punish was educated at the University of Nevada Las Vegas (1980-81) and California State University Fullerton (1981-1984) with studies in accounting and business. Before the “internets” had been invented, he owned and ran (5) national newspapers in the United States of America from 1987-1998
Punish has over 100 original songs written. He records and produces music. A member of ASCAP, Punish has several songs placed in feature films. His music is promoted worldwide and played on all digital networks and net radio.
Resources: YouTube – Apple Music – SoundCloud – Spotify – Instagram – Twitter
Read Johnny’s Full Bio at JohnnyPunish.com >>>
We See The World From All Sides and Want YOU To Be Fully InformedIn fact, intentional disinformation is a disgraceful scourge in media today. So to assuage any possible errant incorrect information posted herein, we strongly encourage you to seek corroboration from other non-VT sources before forming educated opinion. In addition, to get a clear comprehension of VT's independent non-censored media, please read our Policies and Disclosures.
Due to the nature of uncensored content posted by VT's fully independent international writers, VT cannot guarantee absolute validity. All content is owned by the author exclusively. Expressed opinions are NOT necessarily the views of VT, other authors, affiliates, advertisers, sponsors, partners, or technicians. Some content may be satirical in nature. All images are the full responsibility of the article author and NOT VT. About VT - Comment Policy