Furor Over Israeli Facebook User Who Called African Migrants 'Animals' in Photo Caption

Photographs featuring African migrants in south Tel Aviv were uploaded by the woman to an album entitled, 'Night tour in the south Tel Aviv safari.'

Photographs uploaded by an Israeli Facebook user on Friday caused a furor, as users responded to the photo album, which included a caption connoting African migrants as "animals."

The photographs, which featured African migrants in south Tel Aviv's Levinsky Park, were uploaded by the woman to an album entitled, "Night tour in the south Tel Aviv safari" - probably also in part because of a sign on a local pet shop in one of the photographs.   

The caption on one of the images, in which the woman is photographed next to three African migrants, read: "There are no signs that prohibit being photographed with the animals on display. There were also no signs that prohibit feeding them, but we decided not to do that." In the caption, the woman listed the three men pictured with the following names: "Ubunga Dubanga the Third, Abuba Buba Sabuba and Zanbura Buka Kluga Chaka."

The pictures were shared hundreds of times and received furious responses on the social network. Some were critical of the woman herself: "Dear God… In what way are you better than them? I am ashamed of you. Ashamed to be in the same nation as someone as racist and as lacking in principles as you, I remind you that only a few decades ago Jews were treated the same way… ashamed of you," was one of the responses.

Others responded with more aggressive language, however, including threats of rape and violence against the woman herself. "You are an animal yourself, beast," was one of the gentler responses.

"Sewer sludge you degrade this distinguished family name!.... Shame and disgrace!" read another.  

Other Facebook users were offended by the photographs, and frightened by the responses to them. "As an atheist I am happy to see that despite the pessimism, many people think differently to her, despite being Jewish believers," wrote one respondent.

"But I was appalled by people wishing rape [on the woman] and other similarly severe manifestations that were raised in response to the photograph, I understand the anger and the damage, but there are limits," the user added.

In the meantime, the photograph has become a meme, spawning a number of adaptations including images that place the woman herself in a "safari" in different places in Africa, and other situations. On Saturday morning, the preferences on the woman's Facebook account were changed, and updates, which were formerly open to the wider public, are now accessible to only to her friends on Facebook.