July 26, 2013
Let the Foxes Run Wild in Ramallah
The Ramallah locals are fighting over fashion. The Fox fashion chain (which is like Israel's Forever XXI) is set to open in Ramallah, the burgeoning West Bank Arab metropolis, which I hope to visit one day, even though it's illegal for Israelis to go there. It's touted as the Palestinian "Tel Aviv." The opening of the store is an unintended slap in the face to the anti-Israel BDS movement. Even the people the movement claims to support will not let politics ruin their chances of dressing better and more affordably.
This kind of commercial and, to a degree, cultural exchange, is exactly what we need for true peace to happen. Time to see past dogmatic nationalism to achieve what most people ultimately want: a better quality of life, and much of that starts with feeling better about yourself.
The Ramallah resident quoted in the YNET article said it best (and the fact he wasn't afraid of being quoted is a good sign):
Ramallah resident Lutfi Ahmad hopes the store will open in the city. "I am very happy about the opening of a Fox store in Ramallah. Clothes here are very expensive and we can't deal with such high prices. The Fox store opening here may offer us cheaper clothes," he says.
"I don't really care whether the company is Israeli or not, as long as we find nice fashion in prices matching our living. Otherwise everything will fail."
I hope I can shop in Ramallah one day without fear or restriction, especially when the IKEA opens there. It'll be much closer to me than the one in Netanya.
Orit Arfa is author of The Settler.