December 12, 2010

Is Adidas doing a runner from Jerusalem?

Adidas was going to sponsor the Jerusalem marathon but they've panicked now they've realised that the council of the occupied city has routed the run through the bits of Jerusalem that even the so-called international community calls occupied territory.  Here's Ma'ariv or someone's translation of Ma'ariv:
Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat decides to hold the first Jerusalem International Marathon in March 2011. He gets Adidas to sponsor the event. An Israeli runner registers and then discovers that the route runs through some of the most egregious examples of discrimination and dispossession in East Jerusalem: Sheikh Jarrah, Issawiya, the Shufat Refugee Camp, Jabel Mukaber and Sur Baher (see map on right.)
He approaches the Meretz representatives on the Jerusalem city council and they, with international human rights organizations, approach Adidas. Adidas smells a possible consumer boycott and gets cold feet. The company demands “clarifications” from the Jerusalem municipality. What does that mean? Time (and persistence) will tell.
So what are the ifs? The council could re-route the run, Adidas could withdraw funding or the lobby could get involved and Adidas will still fund the run without it being re-routed. Watch this space or as someone said, "time (and persistence) will tell.

On a personal note, Adidas were always my fave runners but I can always go no logo.


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