Self-proclaimed 'Troll' to Donate Prize From Jewish Far-right Contest to Help Arab Women

Noa Stern plans to donate her prize money from the essay contest sponsored by extremist group Lehava to an organization that teaches Hebrew to women from East Jerusalem

Eitan Leshem
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Demonstrators waving the Israeli flag and the banner of the far-right Jewish group Lehava at the Israeli Flag March in Jerusalem, last month.
Demonstrators waving the Israeli flag and the banner of the far-right Jewish group Lehava at the Israeli Flag March in Jerusalem, last month.Credit: HAZEM BADER - AFP
Eitan Leshem

A 25-year-old law student who explicitly identified herself as a troll has come in second in an essay contest sponsored by the Jewish supremacist group Lehava, donating her prize money to a non-profit teaching Hebrew to Arab women in Jerusalem.

Noa Stern, who submitted a vulgar semi-erotic story about a love affair between a Jewish woman and German man, entered the contest under the pseudonym Noa Hamtrila, or "Noa the troll," in response to the organization’s call for stories which would bolster its far-right message of anti-miscegenation.

Members of Lehava, which Defense Minister Benny Gantz recently said should be considered for designation as a terrorist organization, were involved in inciting violent clashes with Palestinians and other illegal activities in recent years. The group objects to romantic relationships between Arabs and Jews.

The group’s leader, Bentzi Gopstein, is known for his racist rhetoric, comparing Christians to “vampires” and demanding they be deported. The organization's latest campaign was launched “to emphasize the danger of assimilation and to touch through words the depth of the great tragedy of the Jewish people at this time.”

"I found out that my story made it to the finals, and we saw that there were cash prizes, so I really asked Facebook to vote for me and said that if I won I would donate the money to a suitable organization,” Stern said, noting that she had donated her 500 shekel ($145) prize to a nonprofit group called Lissan, meaning "language" in Arabic, which has had great success teaching Hebrew at all levels to hundreds of women from East Jerusalem.

“Lehava says they care about the issue of domestic violence but this is a problem that exists in all sectors, and they focus only on Arabs of course. Also, if assimilation interests you, why don't you campaign for the Jewish men who marry Gentiles? That says something about a very chauvinistic worldview, which treats the Jewish woman as property that needs to be protected."

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