Julie Webb-Pullman, a New Zealander in the latest Viva Palestina convoy, has a gushing account at the New Zealand website Scoop about meeting– along with Pippa Bartolotti— “Gaza President Ismail Haniya and Deputy Prime Minister Dan Meridor!”
Shortly before we had complained to women organisers of the event that only men had been allowed into the line to greet the Gazan dignitaries, pointing out that we had both also raised funds, driven the vehicles, and participated equally in the convoy bringing the aid to the stricken Gazan people.
Within minutes, Deputy Prime Minister Dan Meridor came over to us, personally welcomed us to Gaza and expressed his thanks for all we have done. After discussing the situation and participation of women in Gazan life and politics, and assuring us that there was no intention to exclude women from the gretting process, Mr Meridor asked if we would like to meet with the President.
Besides the fawning (do you think the women dared to raise serious concerns about the status of women under Hamas rule?), there are two obvious things wrong with this account.
One is that Ismail Haniyeh’s title is prime minister, not president.
The other, more embarrassing, thing is that Dan Meridor is not the deputy prime minister of Gaza. He’s the deputy prime minister of, um, Israel.
Yes, it seems that rougish trickster Meridor is at it again. Now he’s sneaking into Gaza and pretending to be their deputy prime minister. What a scamp!
Update: It seems one of our readers spoiled the fun by informing Ms. Webb-Pullman of the, um, error. “Deputy Prime Minister Dan Meridor” has been changed to “Foreign Minister Mahmoud Zahar.”