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Ken Toltz
Israel-based writer

What Really Happened at the Great Tel Aviv Hair Salon Siege

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu embraces his wife Sara, in a photo he tweeted out late March 2, 2023 after she was extricated from a hair salon surrounded by demonstrators. (Via Twitter)
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu embraces his wife Sara, in a photo he tweeted out late March 2, 2023 after she was extricated from a hair salon surrounded by demonstrators. (Via Twitter)

There were arguably two top news stories in Israel on Wednesday, the national protests and the siege at Sara Netanyahu’s hair salon. Just to clear things up, here’s what really happened with Israel’s widely admired and much beloved First Lady. When Sara realized that National Protest Day was the perfect opportunity to try on a new look in support of her husband’s widely admired and much beloved “judicial reform” initiative, she snagged the last available appointment at her super-secret Kikar HaMedina hair stylist, the famous and much sought after Moshe.

Her stylist insisted it was time for Sara to “go lighter” to set a new upbeat tone to accompany Israel’s new form of DemocracyLite about to be ushered in by the prime minister’s Knesset majority.

Quickly whispers were heard going from stylist to stylist and well, what usually happens in Israel word leaked right onto the Kikar.

It should be noted that Kikar HaMedina is widely admired and known as Israel’s Rodeo Drive in acknowledgement of the top-end retailers and designer brand boutiques all around the Kikar. All of Tel Aviv’s uppermost crust of society, celebrities and stars daily load their limousines with large shopping bags filled with the latest couture and bikinis, before the rapid devaluation of Israel’s shekel took a bite out their wealth.

Anyway, the rumor of Sara’s very presence in the north Tel Aviv neighborhood quickly leaked and spread especially fast as the day’s protest marches had begun to disperse when police surprised the families of peaceful protesters by lofting stun grenades and employing Israel’s famous horse-mounted riot control division, sometimes referred to as the “Susim”.

It appears the first WhatsApp group popped up called Stop Sara’s New Color Now made up initially of the environmentally conscious “naturalists” who came with chants of “Sara Must Go Back to Her Roots!”, which no one had ever seen so the color would be a bit of mystery.

Pretty soon Tel Aviv’s large LBGTQ community heard of the WhatsApp group and marched over to the Kikar demanding Sara shave down the left side of her head and dye it rainbow colors. This idea was in recognition that Sara purportedly had agreed to serve as Grand Marshall of this year’s Jerusalem Pride March, and what better way to honor Israel’s diversity than by sporting a rainbow hairdo?

Then came the head of Israel’s Labor Party Merav Michaeli wearing her trademark black, carrying a bullhorn and escorted by large representatives from the labor unions who insisted Sara “Go Black” in sisterhood with Michaeli and recognition of her commitment and love of Israel’s working class and organized labor.

But, as this is Israel, a delegation from Bnei Brak was quickly assembled to march over demanding Sara be fitted with a wig! This would make the so-called “religious-Zionists” of Bibi’s coalition very very happy.

A ripple went through the growing crowd when the brunettes arrived. They heard the WhatsApp group rumor that Sara was “going lighter” so they were moved to label all artificial hair dye as antisemitic and threatened to call one of Bibi’s expert ministers in public communications to shoot a video for social media decrying antisemitic hair dye.

But it was Israel’s much admired and greatly beloved high society who were most influential as they protested from their limousines going around and around the Kikar. They knew if Sara was ever going to succeed in her mad desire to be accepted by Israel’s uppermost crust she must not only go lighter but insist on “Marilyn Monroe Platinum” which of course would be a great compliment to her jewelry (thank you Arnon).

I have it on good authority that before arriving for her color, cut and style appointment Sara’s secret service protection squad contacted Moshe to ensure Sara’s favorite backround music would be playing loud enough to drown out the various protest groups, quickly the original Broadway Cast Album of Evita was found and acquired from the nearby Christian Dior boutique.

At the very last moment Sara asked for a vote from the salon stylists insisting that it would only require a majority to help her decide the new official State of Israel First Lady commemorative hair color, just in time for the upcoming celebration of the 75th anniversary of the founding of the State, which might require a touch up or two before April rolls around.

As always Moshe was able to cobble together a majority of his stylists and the “go lighter” plan was adopted (which cannot be reviewed by the Supreme Court’s ‘reasonableness’ clause).

Later it was clear that Sara’s widely admired and much beloved husband who everyone affectionately refers to as “Bibi” was so impressed by Sara’s new color he distributed a private photo of his loving embrace of his widely admired and much beloved wife and First Lady of Israel who had heroically resisted all the pressure of the crowds of protesters at Kikar HaMedina on Wednesday night, a beautiful night for a protest. Sara emerged lighter humming all the way home, “Don’t Cry For Me Argentina”. That’s what really happened.

About the Author
Ken Toltz began his professional career at AIPAC in Washington, D.C. after attending Hebrew University in Jerusalem. He's a 3rd generation Colorado native, businessman and long-time gun violence prevention activist. After 42 years from his first visit to Israel, in 2019 he relocated his home to Mitzpe Ramon in Israel's Negev. Ken currently resides in Herzliya. He writes about Israeli politics, relations with the U.S. and the Israeli creative class of writers and filmmakers.
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