a different side of Israel

Israeli Version of “Survivor” Premieres with Animal Abuse

Survival IsraelAs I am writing this, the first episode of the Israeli version of the hit tv series “Survivor” is being aired on Israeli television (channel 10).

Having bought the rights to the show, it is so far a fair imitation of the original series, this one shot on the Caribbean Islands.

So far, survivors were split into groups and challenged to jump off a boat in the middle of ocean and get the game started.

What they were asked to do was swim to rafts filled with tools necessary for survival, grab as many as they can and swim back to their new individual boats.

So far so good.

What I didn’t see coming, however, was a couple of cages with live chickens amongst the items on the raft.

The participants of each group swam to and jumped on the cages trying to get a hold of them first, causing the chickens in the cage to panic. That was already a huge shock to me (because anyone who knows me knows how sensitive I am to animals) but if that wasn’t enough, the struggle over the cages caused them to open, the chickens fell into the water hysterically trying to swim and the contestants continued to fight over who gets the chickens!

The whole thing was just 30 seconds of chaos: people yelling, chickens panicking, water splashing, feathers flying…

At that point, I just burst into tears and ran out of the room leaving my husband in shock.

He knew how long I had been waiting to see the Israeli version, with all the promos and publicity the show has been having – but I couldnt help it! I just started crying in disbelief.

How is it possible , as we head towards the year 2008, that today’s society and media STILL allows this kind of mistreatment of animals!

And for what???? For rating????

I’m not proud of my reaction. I wish I could go on watching the show as if nothing happened (just like millions of Israelis are probably doing right now). I wish I didn’t take everything so hard and get so emotionally involved when I witness these kinds of injustices…

But I do. It’s just who I am. I have always been this way and I guess I always will be.

And so I continue in my personal (and sometimes emotionally exhausting) pursuit of a better world.

“The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.”

– Mahatma Gandhi

Shira Tamir enjoys blogging on topics that encourage spiritual, social, environmental and global change. Her personal blog can be found at

1 Comment

  1. And I am always telling non-Jews that we are Halachacly kind to animals!

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