A still from the Israeli Ministry of Absorption’s new aliyah ad / YouTube
Dear young American Jews: Israel is the answer to the s***|ty life you see before you.
That’s the takeaway from the Israeli Ministry of Absorption’s new aliyah ad, a ridiculously kitschy video that urges U.S. Jews to trade in their boring American lives — “love handles and socks with sandals” — for adventure-filled Israeli lives full of camel rides, sunny beaches, macho chest hair and “a free degree on Uncle Shmuel’s tab.”
The video doesn’t just trot out every Israel cliché imaginable — it also tries to make Israel look good by making American Jewish life look stale, meaningless, lame. The U.S. is oh-so-played, while Israel is “a place where the script is still unwritten.”
Not pictured in the video are all of the great aspects of American Jewish life — from bagels to Sarah Silverman’s glorious pottymouth to the ability to marry without a rabbi.
Also not pictured? The not-so-pleasant aspects of Israeli life — like the 50-day war the entire country just lived through this summer.
But never mind that: CAMELS!
Sigal Samuel is the Opinion Editor at the Forward. When she’s not tackling race or identity politics, she’s hunting down her Indian Jewish family’s Kabbalistic secret society. Her novel THE MYSTICS OF MILE END tells the story of a dysfunctional family with a dangerous mystical obsession. Her writing has also appeared in The Daily Beast, The Rumpus, and BuzzFeed. Contact Sigal at email@example.com, check out her author website, like her page on Facebook, or follow her on Twitter.