JOHANNESBURG, South Africa (JTA) — A Muslim-owned supplier in Johannesburg canceled an order placed by a South African Jewish group with comments about "blood money."
The South African Zionist Federation ordered conference bags from Saley’s Travel Goods for its biennial conference in March; the federation has dealt with Saley’s several times in recent years. The order was confirmed by phone and in writing by fax, and Saley’s sent an invoice for the goods.
The next day, however, the invoice again was faxed to the Zionist federation with lines drawn across it and the words “Order cancelled by management.”
A handwritten note above the cancellation notice read, “Sorry, we cannot supply you any of our goods as we don’t want or need your blood money! Please do not contact us any more and remove all our contact details from your records and we will do likewise. We don’t want to aid and abet organizations that are responsible for crimes against humanity – Management”
Below the cancellation, a second handwritten note said, “Please don’t pay! Don’t contaminate our account with your blood money!”
Federation Chairman Avrom Krengel told JTA that the organization was not taking up the matter through any formal channels, but publicized it on the Internet and through e-mails.
“We have never before been confronted with such naked hostility, such unbridled hatred, such disgusting slander and such overt anti-Semitic sentiment," the federation said in an e-mail.
Saley’s refused comment to JTA; an unnamed employee said most of the management was out participating in the Hajj, the annual pilgrimmage to Mecca.
Krengel said the response to the e-mail and Internet posting has been “incredible."
“It shows the way the vast majority of South Africans of whatever race or religion or political affiliation feel about it," Krengel said. "They are quite appalled.”
E-mails of support have come from the Muslim community, including editors of community publications and individuals.
The Zionist federation also had received offers from other suppliers, some of whom were prepared to donate the conference bags.