The magic trick was a bit hard to resist. Journalist Raviv Drucker spent an hour sketching a portrait of Mansour Abbas on Channel 13 TV, and Abbas kept impressing, charming and inspiring trust. This man, balding and thickset with his old-fashioned suit, seemed like an antihero in all aspects: an unmodern Arab man, a devious not-terribly-eloquent politician, a political operative who passes at best as chairman of the labor council in Maghar, his home village. He’s the dentist you wouldn’t let anywhere near your teeth.
But this Arab religious conservative was revealed as the opposite of all these stereotypes. It seemed that even Drucker, the wise analyst who has already seen and despised everything, was beside himself with affection and appreciation. Abbas tells the Israeli viewer: It’s not what you think. It’s not what they told you. I have something else to offer you.
Abbas cracked the stereotypes more than a thousand leftist op-eds would, and he’s not even a leftist in the least.