Flag factory profits down as Islamic protests dwindle

Palestinian flag factory complains of lost profits as flag-burning demand diminish.

By KHALED ABU TOLD-YOU-SO
March 7, 2012 22:04
1 minute read.
Protestors really upset they forgo the marshmallow

Protestors really upset they forgot the marshmallows 390. (photo credit: Second guy on the left)

 
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RAMALLAH – Workers in a Palestinian flag factory that manufactures Israeli flags, as well as the flag of many Western countries, faced layoffs and pay-cuts on Tuesday, as managers blamed a slowdown in global Islamic protests for dropping profits.

The ‘International Jihad and Accessories’ factory in Ramallah employs 3,000 workers and exports a staggering 99 percent of its stock for public flag burnings in countries around the world, plant owner Muhammad Abu Jihad Muhammad told reporters. The remaining 1% of flags are sold to local customers to be burned in public protests in the West Bank, Gaza and east Jerusalem.

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However, as public Islamic protests dwindle in the West, Muhammad said demand for flags to burn has plummeted.

“Our best years were 2005 and 2006, during the riots over the Danish cartoons,” Mohammed said, referring to the protests over the 12 caricatures of the Islamic prophet Mohammed published in Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten in September 2005.

“That was a wonderful time for us, because there was a lot of demand for many different flags,” the factory owner said, adding that furious Muslims from around the world had ordered Danish, Swedish, Norwegian and even Finnish flags to burn as outrage over the cartoons grew.

“Normally, people mostly order American and Israeli flags – they are our biggest sellers,” he said. “But with the cartoon protests, we really diversified and offered our customers different flag options, from all across the European Union.”

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The 1989 fatwa against Salman Rushdie’s controversial novel The Satanic Verses also led to increased profits, as thousands of Muslims flocked to the streets to burn British flags, as well as copies of the offending book.

Muhammad said he is hoping – and praying – for another Islamic scandal that will lead to more orders for flags, improve cash flow and save his factory, and called on supporters of the Palestinian people to help.

“All it takes is another global Islamic scandal,” he said.

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