The following guest post needs no introduction:
A Guest Post by Malke
As so many people in Israel know, many things here run according to the rules of protektzia.
Like so many other concepts, it has no literal translation but can best be explained by, “it’s not what you know; it’s who you know.”
This is usually to the disadvantage of olim, who tend not to have many connections here and often find the whole concept somewhat distasteful.
However, to Israelis, it’s apparently so ingrained that they barely take notice anymore.
Proof of this can be found in a recent Galei Tzahal (Israel’s army radio station) program, which included an interview with a top ranking army official.
Towards the end, they took questions and comments from the audience. At which point, some woman gets on the phone and starts complaining that everything in the army is protektzia and that her son - and others like him, who don’t know anyone - get the short shrift.
So what does the officer say?
“Send me his details, and I’ll take care of things.”
The funniest part is that the interviewer’s response was, “oh, great,” and the mother’s response was, “oh, thank you, I'll do that.”
No one saw any irony here…
Thanks, Malke, and also mazal tov on your children’s beautiful wedding! May the young couple be privileged to build a bayit ne’eman b’Yisrael!