If swine flu isn’t kosher in Israel, is it halal in the Muslim world?

April 27, 2009

Our Jerusalem bureau had this interesting little story today about the swine flu outbreak:

Swine flu not kosher in Israel
JERUSALEM, April 27 (Reuters) – Swine flu? Not in the Jewish state.

“We will call it Mexico flu. We won’t call it swine flu,” Deputy Health Minister Yakov Litzman, a black-garbed Orthodox Jew, told a news conference on Monday, assuring the Israeli public that authorities were prepared to handle any cases.

Under Jewish dietary laws, pigs are considered unclean and pork is forbidden food — although non-kosher meat is available in some stores in Israel.

pigsIf swine flu isn’t kosher, then it probably wouldn’t be halal either. So is swine flu being renamed anywhere in the Muslim world?

NB: The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website advises: “You can not get swine influenza from eating pork or pork products.”

(Photo: Pigs at a farm outside Hanoi, 27 April 2009/Nguyen Huy Kham)
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Poor little piggies, they don’t deserve the bad rap.

Perhaps if conditions in pig farms improve and the animals are taken care of with respect this disease wouldn’t be around, like mad cow disease.

Any living creature will get diseased if not properly taken care while alive and that includes meat that is halal or kosher like lamb. Diseases don’t seem to be prejudiced towards which animal to infect: men or pigs, chicken or cows.
There is a disease every year that gets named after the chinese horoscope, it seems; Bird, cow, swine. Next year it may be goat. I hope that will be kosher enough for some people.

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