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Chaos Aboard El Al - Israeli Fail!!

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At one point in history, working for the airlines was a glamorous profession. Beautiful, young and sophisticated flight attendants served passengers who were flying in high style, and for many it was even a big social event. A level of class and service was expected, and airlines delivered. Now, it has become one of the most thankless, mind numbing jobs on the planet. I know because I used to work for United Airlines before I became a lawyer. Dealing with annoyed, angry, drunk and frustrated passengers on a consistent basis is mentally draining and requires the highest level of patience, which I sometimes lack in my older years.

El Al, the national carrier of Israel, is legendary for its top notch security. However, security screening has absolutely no impact on abhorrent human behavior, which becomes more difficult to control at 35,000 feet above the sky. Last week, chaos ensued on an El Al flight from New York to Tel Aviv, when a group of ultra-Orthodox Jews boarded the flight to celebrate Rosh Hashanah in the Holy Land. Hundreds of the men demanded that other passengers switch seats, claiming they can't sit next to women on the long flight due to religious beliefs. Some of the men even offered to pay female passengers to move seats, but most refused. In some cases, because they didn't want to sit apart from their spouse, in others simply to make a statement that they didn't condone the extreme behavior of the men. Once the flight took off, most of the ultra-Orthodox men remained in the aisles, refusing to take their seat next to a woman. One fellow passenger called the flight an "11 hour nightmare!" Flight attendants couldn't serve drinks, meals, etc. because the aisles were blocked by the ultra-Orthodox Jews. Here's a photo from Twitter:

aisles

Now there are numerous petitions and complaints filed against El Al, with many claiming the airline promotes gender discrimination. In one article, a frequent flier of El Al claims this wasn't an isolated incident. She states that similar problems have occurred on past flights, with an increase in disturbances over the past few years. An American woman even sued El Al, claiming a flight attendant moved her to the back of the plane to accommodate one of the ultra-Orthodox passengers.

Of course, I respect and support all humans' rights to practice their religion. However, religious beliefs should never interfere with the civil rights of others. In any modern culture, freedom of flight and movement is a basic human right. So, El Al is in a difficult situation given its core client demographic.

What do you think? How would you react if you were on this flight? What should El Al do? Further information about this flight can be read on the following news sites: DailyMail UK, Washington Post, The Guardian, Jewish News, Haaretz and many other publications.

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Battle With Orthodox Jew

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Comments

( 87 comments — Leave a comment )
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pro100_petrov
Oct. 1st, 2014 04:53 pm (UTC)
I would tell that guys to shut up.
peacetraveler22
Oct. 1st, 2014 04:54 pm (UTC)
They would not listen! And then what? I don't know the reasoning for this extreme behavior. I don't think it has any basis in the Torah.
(no subject) - siberian_cat - Oct. 1st, 2014 05:00 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Oct. 1st, 2014 05:07 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - pro100_petrov - Oct. 1st, 2014 05:02 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Oct. 1st, 2014 05:08 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - pin_gwin - Oct. 1st, 2014 07:57 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - buyaner - Oct. 1st, 2014 06:34 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Oct. 1st, 2014 06:36 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - buyaner - Oct. 1st, 2014 07:18 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Oct. 1st, 2014 07:22 pm (UTC) - Expand
yarowind
Oct. 1st, 2014 05:01 pm (UTC)
>>Some of the men even offered to pay female passengers to move seats,

was offered a little, I guess:)
peacetraveler22
Oct. 1st, 2014 05:10 pm (UTC)
Honestly, I don't think I would have moved for even a large sum of money. My pride is worth more than that. But I can't say for sure. If they had waved $1,000 in my face perhaps I would have done it. :)
(no subject) - vladshatilov - Oct. 1st, 2014 06:08 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Oct. 1st, 2014 06:09 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - yarowind - Oct. 4th, 2014 07:10 am (UTC) - Expand
pin_gwin
Oct. 1st, 2014 05:01 pm (UTC)
The crew should return plane to NY, unload these ..... and bring them to the court. I surprised they did not do it.

Edited at 2014-10-01 05:02 pm (UTC)
peacetraveler22
Oct. 1st, 2014 05:11 pm (UTC)
I tried to think what would happen on a U.S. airline. The plane would have definitely been returned. We return flights over everything - minor disturbances and unruly passengers included! I would consider these men to fall into both of those categories. I doubt I would be able to control my temper if I was on the flight, and one of them spoke to me in a condescending manner.
(no subject) - pin_gwin - Oct. 1st, 2014 05:18 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Oct. 1st, 2014 05:21 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - levkasichkin - Oct. 1st, 2014 05:53 pm (UTC) - Expand
girlspell
Oct. 1st, 2014 05:03 pm (UTC)

I've flown El Al. But it was years ago when I was 16. I remember some Hasidim on the plane, but I don't remember them getting special treatment. By the way, there is a difference between being Orthodox and Hasidim. Hasidim are eastern European Jews entrenched in the the 18th century. Their clothing and mannerism are very similar to the extreme protestantism of the Amish. Also from Germany. Must be the water in Germany, LOL! It's more of a cult following. They are followers of a particular rabbi. I'm Orthodox too, but I'm western European and totally different in culture.

By the way, when I flew there (at 16) they still had tough security. I remember being targeted. I was singled out from the usual group of people trying get on the plane. I later found out the lone, single young women got extra security examination because sometimes a "boyfriend" will hand over a suitcase with a bomb on it to the lone girlfriend. As in the Pan Am Lockerbie bombing. Talk about being profiled!
peacetraveler22
Oct. 1st, 2014 05:14 pm (UTC)
I also got pulled to the side by Israeli security in Tel Aviv. I'm not sure why, I think my Belarusian visa caused suspicion. They did not understand where the visa was from and asked me a lot of questions about it. Then, they moved me to a separate room and every single item was taken out of my carry on and checked bags, a magic wand was waved over all the items, and then I was asked all kinds of questions about past travel. Btw, how can you tell the difference between a Hasidic and Orthodox Jew? Do they wear different hats or clothes?
(no subject) - girlspell - Oct. 1st, 2014 05:39 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Oct. 1st, 2014 05:43 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - girlspell - Oct. 1st, 2014 05:46 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Oct. 1st, 2014 05:49 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - girlspell - Oct. 1st, 2014 06:01 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Oct. 1st, 2014 06:08 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - girlspell - Oct. 1st, 2014 06:42 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Oct. 1st, 2014 06:47 pm (UTC) - Expand
semicvetic
Oct. 1st, 2014 05:04 pm (UTC)
they should learn something from arabs how to deal with stubborn women: they just dont allow women to travel without a superviser (husband or father)! and arabs are pretty successful in this: there are few arab countries where women could say or do smth against the will of men))))

Edited at 2014-10-01 05:07 pm (UTC)
peacetraveler22
Oct. 1st, 2014 05:17 pm (UTC)
Stubborn? Sitting in an assigned airline seat is stubborn? I don't think so. :)) Btw, isn't it a boring existence to have a woman do everything you ask or demand? Where's the challenge, stimulation or intrigue in that?

Edited at 2014-10-01 05:25 pm (UTC)
(no subject) - semicvetic - Oct. 2nd, 2014 10:39 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Oct. 2nd, 2014 01:43 pm (UTC) - Expand
spawn999
Oct. 1st, 2014 05:30 pm (UTC)
а че пост на буржуйском?
sasha_ek
Oct. 1st, 2014 05:32 pm (UTC)
well, sounds like they need an ultra-ortodox airline.
peacetraveler22
Oct. 1st, 2014 05:40 pm (UTC)
In America, we once had a "Hooters Airline," for men who wanted to stare at big tits and be served by scantily clad women on flights (see pic below). So, sure, why not have an ultra-Orthodox airline if this sect is so opposed to being in the company of females? Sounds like a good idea to me.

 photo hooters_zpsbbddbbc1.jpg
(no subject) - qi_tronic - Oct. 1st, 2014 08:17 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Oct. 1st, 2014 08:22 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - qi_tronic - Oct. 1st, 2014 08:35 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Oct. 1st, 2014 08:38 pm (UTC) - Expand
fesma94
Oct. 1st, 2014 05:58 pm (UTC)
I hate orthodoxes !!!!!!
peacetraveler22
Oct. 1st, 2014 06:00 pm (UTC)
Do you see a lot of them in Tel Aviv? I was only in Tel Aviv in the airport, I didn't get a chance to explore the city. In Jerusalem, they are everywhere!! I did not like the environment at all.
fesma94
Oct. 1st, 2014 06:04 pm (UTC)
I see a lot of them everywhere in Israel ! They like the plague!!!!!
peacetraveler22
Oct. 1st, 2014 06:07 pm (UTC)
They are free to live their life as they wish, but I don't want them imposing their sexist behavior on me on airplanes! I probably would have gotten into a verbal fight with one of these men if I was on that flight. I don't like extremism in any form - Judaism, Islam, Christianity. It's all the cause of much evil and conflict in the world.
(no subject) - fesma94 - Oct. 1st, 2014 06:12 pm (UTC) - Expand
g_kar
Oct. 1st, 2014 06:58 pm (UTC)
>What should El Al do?

They should have made an emergency landing and called police to the airport, as some passengers obviously interfered with normal cabin crew work.

As for the ultra-orthodox: why haven't they chartered their own flight, I wonder?
peacetraveler22
Oct. 1st, 2014 07:01 pm (UTC)
I guess they can't afford their own chartered flight. I know in Israel, they receive financial support from the government. However, this flight originated from America, so I assume many of the ultra-Orthodox Jews on board are living in America. We don't pay people to exist and simply practice their religion. I'm 100% against this!
(no subject) - g_kar - Oct. 1st, 2014 07:03 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Oct. 1st, 2014 07:06 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - g_kar - Oct. 1st, 2014 07:09 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Oct. 1st, 2014 07:10 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - g_kar - Oct. 1st, 2014 07:12 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Oct. 1st, 2014 07:13 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - g_kar - Oct. 1st, 2014 07:14 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - siberian_cat - Oct. 1st, 2014 07:07 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Oct. 1st, 2014 07:08 pm (UTC) - Expand
moebiuscat
Oct. 1st, 2014 07:06 pm (UTC)
I just hate this obnoxious behaviour of ultra-orthodox Jews. I believe in freedom up until it limits freedom of other people. If they don't want to sit next to woman (yes, they should not according to norms of orthodox judaism - same happens in public buses in Israel) - they should buy two or tree seats in a row or avoid flying..

I believe it's a matter of safety and if passenger refuses to sit and buckle up - he should be removed from the flight, and possibly charged. Period.
peacetraveler22
Oct. 1st, 2014 07:37 pm (UTC)
I think on a U.S. carrier, they would have returned the flight for safety reasons. Seems this happens frequently in America, due to passenger disturbances. "I believe in freedom up until it limits freedom of other people" - yes, exactly! :) I did not ride any buses in Jerusalem. Some of them are not co-ed? They have buses specifically for men, and others for women?
(no subject) - moebiuscat - Oct. 1st, 2014 07:51 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Oct. 1st, 2014 07:54 pm (UTC) - Expand
(Deleted comment)
peacetraveler22
Oct. 1st, 2014 07:53 pm (UTC)
Because all of my subscribers are Russian. :) I have no American audience, only Russian speaking population reads my blog.
(Deleted comment)
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Oct. 1st, 2014 08:05 pm (UTC) - Expand
(Deleted comment)
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Oct. 1st, 2014 08:38 pm (UTC) - Expand
sineglazzka2301
Oct. 2nd, 2014 05:24 am (UTC)
I really can't understand people who have such maggots in their heads... That's exactly why I do not belong to any religious confession (though I can't call myself an atheist).
My opinion is, that if a group of people decides to live under some restrictions, it should live in isolation. If such people use some service, they must either obey the rules of the one performing the service (air company in this case), or not to use it altogether. When in Rome, do as the Romans do. Or, at least, sit quietly in the corner and don't disturb the others.
peacetraveler22
Oct. 2nd, 2014 01:49 pm (UTC)
Yes, maggots is the right word. Such narrow thoughts eat away at brain matter, and common sense is obviated in the process. I don't like these religious labels, or any organized religion, but I'm not an atheist. So, we are kind of the same. I'm undecided on the existence of a higher being, and probably will remain that way my entire life.
andrey_kaminsky
Oct. 2nd, 2014 05:45 am (UTC)
Отрывок из моей неизданной книги проповедей:
Christianity borrowed many of Judaism. It would be wise that Judaism now has made the desired borrowing from Christianity. I'm talking about the idea of sin and repentance. As we know, the repentance is not possible without a sin, and to get into the kingdom of heaven is not possible without repentance.
Orthodox Jews are obliged to put this bright, humane idea in their heads instead of silly black hats. Then they can spend time during the flight in a pleasant manner, communicating with women, courting and regaling them and themselves with cocktails, exchanging addresses for future adulteries. Repentance solves all problems!
And, returning to the issue of silly black hats: It is clear that the reformation of Judaism is needed. I hope, after the Reformation, the Jews will replace these dark, gloomy hats by funny captain's caps or Confederate soldier's caps. This will be the beginning of the termination of the Arab-Israeli conflict :)
peacetraveler22
Oct. 2nd, 2014 01:45 pm (UTC)
Re: Отрывок из моей неизданной книги проповедей:
Well, some Arab women wear bright and decorative headscarves (equivalent to hats), and this has not ended the conflict! But thanks for your sermon, Pastor Kaminsky. Very wise. :)
Alex Winter
Oct. 2nd, 2014 06:56 am (UTC)
а вы похожи на стюардессу
peacetraveler22
Oct. 2nd, 2014 01:50 pm (UTC)
Почему?
(no subject) - Alex Winter - Oct. 2nd, 2014 02:42 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Oct. 2nd, 2014 03:15 pm (UTC) - Expand
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