Is The 'Zara' Clothing Line Working Anti-Semitism Into Their Products?
This is either a horrible coincidence or something much, much worse.
What's the expression? "Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me."
If Zara is trying to improve its reputation, they're doing an awfully bad job. The spanish clothing line -- after releasing a swastika-decorated purse in 2007 -- recently stopped selling the "sheriff" t-shirt below after customers realized its resemblance to what Jews wore in concentration camps.
According to original reports, the swastika purse was the result of "external production." Still, to follow that up with this is -- at the very least -- questionable.
At the worst, it is a reflection of the rising anti-semitism in Europe and the result of some very bad oversight, one that allowed an intentional swipe at Jews across the globe. The shirt is supposed to resemble a "sheriff" outfit, inspired by old western films, but the "sheriff" is hardly visible on the gold star that looks nearly identical to the Star of David.
Upon seeing the shirt, Johnny Daniels -- a representative for a nonprofit that works to preserve unmarked graves from Jews killed in Poland -- called Zara and ordered the shirt to be removed. According to Times Of Israel Times, they obliged. The shirt no longer appears on their website.
"Zara is a company with more than 50 stores in Israel and is very close to the Jewish tradition," Jesús Echevarría, Chief Communications & Corporate Affairs Officer, told A+. "We have cooperated with several institutions and foundations with this regard and we will keep it in the future."
For some, there are no questions behind this questionable design:
"To survivors of the Holocaust and their relatives and friends in Israel, that message is crystal clear," Hani Levi Julian said in an article for The Jewish Press. "It is especially loud after recent fiery rhetoric from Turkey"s new President-elect Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who has made his dislike of Jews and Israelis very plain over the years...Produced in Turkey, the garment is sold online, but apparently only in the Israeli outlet."
Inditex is the parent company of Zara. The group has another seven brands beyond Zara. Read their full response to A+ below:
Thank you very much for contacting us directly. Your comments are of a very high value for us after our mistake today.
First of all, we would like to confirm that Zara Kids removed immediately the mentioned t-shirt from its stores and website. The garment was inspired by the classic Western films, but we recognize that the design was insensitive and apologize sincerely for any offence caused to our customers.
This mistake is –please have no doubt- far away from the philosophy and the intention of the Inditex Group. Zara is a company with more than 50 stores in Israel and is very close to the Jewish tradition. We have cooperated with several institutions and foundations with this regard and we will keep it in the future.
Zara has issued a heartfelt apology on its social network profiles. The garment was available only for just a few hours and sales of the t-shirt have been marginal. The items will be reliably destroyed.
With regard to your question, after talking to the Design Department –and seeing how concerned they were- I believe that the mistake has been unintentional, but we have already started an internal inquiry to know every detail of the chain of command and we will reach to the last consequences to clarify this incident.
Inditex would like to reiterate its utmost respect for all cultures and religions. The Group is a Company where people from 180 nationalities work together representing all the cultures, races and religions of the modern world. Inditex is proud of its cultural diversity. In addition, respect and dignity feature among the principles which guide and define its corporate values. The Group condemns and rejects any form of discrimination.
Please don"t hesitate in contacting me again with regard to this or any other matter.
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