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Netanyahu/Arafat toys
Peace process therapy? This shop owner evidently claims no allegiance to either toy.
 

Political puppets make perfect Mideast presents

December 23, 1997
Web posted at: 11:49 p.m. EST (0449 GMT)

JERUSALEM (CNN) -- The eight days of Hanukkah are a traditional period of gift-giving for Jews around the world. In Israel, the hottest-selling gifts this year are also a barometer of Middle Eastern politics.

They are sponge-like rubber heads of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian President Yasser Arafat. The toys sell for about $11 each.

The heads, which shoppers and shopkeepers alike enjoy squeezing, resemble the leaders' characters in the ruthlessly satirical "Hartzufim" television program -- an Israeli cousin of Britain's "Spitting Image" and France's "Guignois des Infos."

 
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