Doug Klein

Zionist’s Guide to the World Cup – Day 25

The good news is that the Zionist’s Guide to the World Cup’s (ZGWC) Croatian problem has been solved.  By losing 3-0 to the solid, Leonel Messi-led Argentines, the Croatians have been eliminated from the chance to win the World Cup.  Further, when the Croatians went down by two goals around the 35 minute mark, the television cameras rarely panned their red-and-white clad fans.

The result of this match, though, still leaves the ZGWC with the Argentinian problem.  But that can be dealt with on another day.  The France and Morocco match looms tomorrow.

Before we move on to discuss this match, the ZGWC needs to revisit one aspect of the England vs. France match.  In the lead up to this highly symbolic match, the ZGWC made repeated references to various famous battles between the English and the French, e.g., Agincourt, Trafalgar, and the like.  The problem was that every such battle which came immediately to mind was an English victory over the French.  For all of its alleged historical literacy, the ZGWC was unable to easily identify a French military victory over the English which did not also include Americans (Yorktown), Algonquin Indians (Fort William Henry), or teenaged girls (Joan of Arc).  Just saying.

As for the match between the French and Moroccans, there is little new ground to cover, only the familiar dilemmas.  Jews, the world over, seem to have developed an instinctive reaction against France because of the prevalence of French anti-Semitism and bias against Israel. The French have excelled in producing not only right wing anti-Semitism (See The Dreyfus Affair), but also by inventing left wing anti-Semitism (See Voltaire).  Nevertheless, there are also reasons to cheer for the French, albeit ambivalently.  The French were very supportive of Israel until Charles De Gaulle became president of France.  In fact, France has had three Jewish premiers–Leon Blum, René Mayer, and Pierre Mendès France–more than any other western countries.  For those of you scoring at home, that would mean France would beat the United States of America, 3-nil, even without the services of, say, Nicolas Sarkozy or Kylian Mbappé.

As for Morocco, not only did they sign onto the Abraham Accord, but every Moroccan Jew known to the ZGWC is passionately supportive of the Atlas Lions.  Even if this only amounts to a half a dozen fellows with a bottle of arak, it is 100% support.  Despite this, though, the 100% support accorded the Moroccan team by the so-called “Arab Street” engenders a great deal of discomfort on the part of the ZGWC.  While this may be little more than the ZGWC asserting that it is against Morocco because the Arab Street is for Morocco, it is what it is.

And it will be whatever it will be.  In the meantime, the ZGWC will clutch its Tricolour and proclaim (ambivalently naturally):  “Allez Les Bleus.”

About the Author
Doug Klein is an attorney in Chicago and the wrestling coach at Ida Crown Jewish Academy.
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