wizo

Just in time for International Woman’s Day commemorations, the Women’s International Zionist Organization (WIZO) has released its annual lists of the most blatantly sexist Israeli advertisements that ran this year.

This is the sixth year in a row that WIZO has released its top-ten list as part of its “Mark of Shame” campaign meant to call out the biggest offenders in the industry.

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Founded in Britain in 1920, WIZO is a “non-party international movement dedicated to the advancement of the status of women, welfare of all sectors of Israeli society and encouragement of Jewish education in Israel and the Diaspora,” according to its website.

This year, WIZO’s dubious distinction was given to a diverse group of gratuitous or offensive ads including one from the Israeli Postal Service, a Carolina Lemke glasses spot starring supermodel Bar Refaeli, Haaretz newspaper and ALDO shoes.

In the Postal Service ad, a woman appears to enjoy and encourage a mugger to rummage through her pockets looking for cash, while the Carolina Lemke ad uses a sexually-suggestive Refaeli to seek spectacles. (This is the second time an ad starring the internationally-famous model has made the WIZO list, notes the Jerusalem Post.) The NSFW Haaretz ad made it into the top ten, meanwhile, due to its depiction of a man rating his partner’s sexual performance.

“Today we see representations of pornography everywhere,” Sharon Cherkassky, director of the campaign for WIZO, said in a press release. “There are campaigns focused on twerking, provocative selfies online, and clips that are damaging shown on MTV. These have become a normal part of our lives and there’s no doubt it trickles down in society and distorts the perception of sexuality among youth.”

Selected by a panel of judges including members of the Knesset, psychologists and academics, the WIZO list was officially unveiled at an event in Tel Aviv.

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