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Jewish Journal

Arabs and Jews fight together in Jerusalem boxing club

by Brad A. Greenberg

July 30, 2011 | 3:19 pm

I’ve written a few posts about Jewish boxers (?), Israeli title holders, tales of Talmud and tape. But this story from the Associated Press is a new one that follows a sort of cliche structure.

It’s about a boxing club in Jerusalem where Jewish and Arab boxers spar as peers:

At a time when Israelis and Palestinians are increasingly segregated, the Maccabi Jerusalem Boxing Club offers a hub of coexistence. Jews and Arabs who would normally never cross paths jog, skip rope and spar. They pant and sweat, and the occasional nose gets bloody, but tensions never rise after the bell is rung.

Luxemburg says it is typical for aspiring boxers to come with troubled pasts. But learning how to fight actually lessens violent tendencies, he said.

“When someone has that confidence in himself, he doesn’t look for a fight,” he said. “He doesn’t need to throw stones. Sports brings people together. When you get in that ring together, when you get so close you can smell the other person ... it’s a different level.”

Read the rest here.

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