Wherever we go we find ourselves grappling with life's great mysteries: What is the meaning of life? Why are we here? Does God exist? How can I read the Murdoch press and retain my sanity? to name but a few. But these days the question on everyone's lips is this:
"Max Brenner says he is a man of peace who hates all forms of violence. So how has this chocolate maker become the target of anti-Israeli protesters in Australia who accuse him of being complicit with the Israeli military?" (Targeted chocolatier a 'man of peace', Cameron Stewart, The Australian, 13/8/11)
OK, maybe not on everyone's lips. Maybe just those with an agenda who like to play games with history:
"It's a claim which has outraged many who see the campaign against the 24-store Max Brenner chocolate chain in this country as an ugly echo of the anti-Semitism of 1930s Germany when Jewish businesses were targeted." (ibid)
And, it seems, no one is more perplexed than the bald guy himself. So perplexed he doesn't even need to shave his head. Is that perhaps because he's so busy scratching it, the hair never quite makes it out of the starting gate? Or is it because the 'chocolate' under his fingernails contains a substance that... But I digress:
"But it seems Max Brenner, the company's founder, is perplexed and dismayed at finding himself an unwitting symbol of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. A Max Brenner spokesman said Mr Brenner, who lives in New York, was on leave and unavailable for interview. But when asked in July 2009 about protests against his Sydney stores..." (ibid)
Hang on. July 2009? Oh, I see! Could Max have become so depressed over the emergence of the BDS-SS in 2009 that he fled Sydney for New York and now lives, curled up in a foetal position, somewhere in MB HQ?
OK, so what'd he have to say back in 2009?
"... Mr Brenner said he was no more than a chocolate-maker. 'Everything that has to do with conflict seems stupid (to me)', he said. 'Whether it is in Israel or not, anything to do with violence, aggressiveness or appearing at protests or boycotts seems silly (to me). But then again, I am just a chocolate-maker'." (ibid)
What a sweet guy! Wouldn't hurt - let alone protest or boycott - a fly, obviously. So why, why, why, Delilah, given that...
"The link between the 43-year-old Mr Brenner and the Israeli military is accidental and indirect, notwithstanding the fact that Mr Brenner, like other Israeli-born men, had to complete mandatory military service as a young man." (ibid)
... are those bloody BDS-SS still persecuting the poor man?:
"In 2001, the Max Brenner chain became part of the much larger Strauss Group, Israel's second-largest food and beverage company." (ibid)
Does this mean that Max, the "man of peace who hates all forms of violence," doesn't really exist any more? That he isn't really a reincarnation of some sweet little German Jewish chocolate maker with a brown-streaked apron, weeping amid the ruins of his Berlin shop back in 1938? That he's really just a logo? Guess so. Boy, did Cameron Stewart have us fooled for a while.
OK, so what we're really dealing with here is an international corporation? Albeit one that takes the notion of corporate responsibility very seriously indeed by giving succour to a very special, very needy - and terribly misunderstood - group of down-and-outs:
"... But Strauss also provides food and care packages to Israeli soldiers." (ibid)
Eureka, that's it then! It took us - well, Cameron Stewart actually - a long time (paragraph 13 of a 16 paragraph 'report'!) but we finally got an answer to our question: Max Brenner, aka Strauss Group, directly aids and abets, nay, has actually "adopted,"* the killers of the Golani and Givati platoons, and that is why he has "become the target of anti-Israel protesters." Mystery solved! But no, wait a minute, there's a catch...
"This, in the eyes of anti-Israel activists, justifies a boycott." (ibid)
Right, aiding and abetting the GGs is only a problem if seen through the wide, wild, hate-filled eyes of crazed anti-Semites, aka "anti-Israeli protesters."
Whereas, in the cool, calm and collected eyes of Cameron Stewart, whose 2005 trip to Israel, "partly sponsored by the Israeli Foreign Ministry,"** has equipped him to see just how sweet the GGs really are, it's no problem at all.
[* See my 12/7/09 post How Sweet It Is; **Road to the point of no return, 24/12/05]