I am a longtime patron of El Al. While I am familiar with the common complaints, I have only had good experience in 52 years of flying. I always praise El Al to the skies (Features, “Keeping It Kosher,” November 18, 2015).
Most of my children live in Israel. And I travel there more often than I travel from Brooklyn to Manhattan.
Having said that, I am deeply disturbed by the reports of El Al’s mismanagement — to put it kindly — of the Flight 002 affair. Perhaps worse than the mismanagement of the flight is El Al’s attempt to distort the news with disinformation to cover their own failings.
El Al seemingly figured they were safe in reporting fake news about the infamous Shabbos flight because who would call them out on chareidi bashing? Certainly not the secular media.
Or so El Al thought. As it turned out, though, they couldn’t rely on the Jerusalem Post to do the wrong thing. Even the Post, which had originally published only El Al’s version of the story, came around after they saw the reports coming from passengers. Then they lambasted El Al for dumping it on the chareidim: “Don’t hide, El Al. Don’t be flighty — tell the truth.”
This incident calls to mind a little-known law of nature; a Jewish corollary of Newton’s Third Law of Physics: “For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.”
It has been noted that every time the Israeli government and media bash chareidim, the world soon bashes Israel. I can only hope and pray that this time we won’t see that scenario play itself out.
Much as I hate to say this, maybe the time has come for religious Jews to take our business elsewhere.
And don’t hit me with any anti-BDS sign. This has nothing to do with boycotts or politics. It has everything to do with a time-honored tradition in Israel: The Strike.
I even have a slogan for this strike:
Shabbat or Shvitah.
Shalom, El Al. I will miss you.
Mordechai Schiller, Brooklyn, N.Y.