Shalom Israel has recently received an assignment to build a new custom made tour for the general public and for international observers to show if Israel is indeed a racist country or not. This tour will receive subsidy of the (foreign, not Israeli or Jewish or Arab) customer to reduce the costs for everyone. The customer doesn’t want to be named (which is normal for custom created tours until the tour is ready).
The tour – as from the moment of this writing – is not completed, but the highlights of the tour are already in place. In many aspects, the new tour looks like the History and Culture tour (an informational historical journey) and even the Food and Wine Tour (where the group eat the food and drink the wine of the many cultures living and residing in Israel), which we already operate, host and market, but this time we go to visit the actual people living in Israel and see for ourselves how they live and where the racism is. We are talking about Jews (religious and not religious), Christians (Chalcedonian-Orthodox, Non-Chalcedonian Orthodox, Roman Catholic (Latin and Uniate) and Protestant), Israeli Arabs, Muslim Arabs, Christian Arabs, Bedouin Arabs, Druze, Circassians (Sunni Arabs).
But that is not all. Next to the main groups in Israel (Jews, Christians, Druze and Arabs), we have many other minorities in Israel between the Jews, like the Jews from Europe and the US, the Jews from Arab countries, the Jews from Ethiopia, Jews from Russia, etc. All of them are minorities and together we are talking about much more then what the State of Israel states as the 1.8 million people who are a minority. And then we have the authorities we will visit, like the army, the police and of course it will not be complete with some politics and visit the Knesset and speak with them.
The tour will be designed that we will visit them, eat with them, speak and even live with them for some days. The people of the tour will not live in hotels or guest houses or the like, but they will live in apartments, houses, studios within or every near the places where the people themselves live. The tour will not be limited to one specific group of people (or minorities), but they will cover all the aspects of Israeli society.
Guides for this kind of tour will not be a normal type of guide. First of all, they will be part of a group of guides, which consists out of a professional guide, a local guide (which change every time we will change places), a specialist and a member of the sponsor of the tour. None of the guides (except the local guide) will be an Israeli (Jew, Arab, Christian, Druze) and all of them will be trained by us.
Further the tour will be focused within the areas of the State of Israel and we will not visit any other places (like the West Bank or Gaza). Next to the integration with the people living in Israel, we will visit and show off the beauty of Israel.
This time, the tour will have a security aspect integrated. If there is racism in Israel, we will see it ourselves. The tour is expected to be finished early January 2016.