Sports and Politics

The UAE denied two Israeli tennis players visas to Dubai to compete in the Barclays tennis championship. The UAE’s government claimed they feared the players would pose a security risk due to lingering anger over the war in Gaza. The Wall Street Journal(Europe)  removed its sponsorship of the event and the Tennis Channel in the US said it would not show the tournament. The UAE backed down and Andy Ram received a visa to Dubai but Shahar Peer has missed the tournament since the women’s competitions preceded the men’s.

Z-Word’s Ben Cohen examines what this means for Israeli sports. Another interesting question is, why the sudden support for Israel around the world? Just a few weeks ago, Israel was being vilified for its attack on Gaza. Suddenly Dubai is being pressured to allow Israelis in its territory. Perhaps this is because the visa refusal is seen as an anti-Semitic act and not an anti-Israeli one?

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