Several NFL players have canceled an Israel-sponsored trip aimed at improving the country’s image.
In a report by ESPN, only five out of the 11 NFL players scheduled to go have arrived in the country. According to a ministry for strategic affairs and public diplomacy news release, the trip would bring “influencers” who would serve as goodwill ambassadors.
So, Seattle Seahawks lineman Michael Bennett opted to pull out, accusing the government of using him for PR purposes and citing sympathy for Palestinians, and, this in turn, prompted his brother, New England Patriots tight end Martellus Bennett, to decline, too.
Other NFL players backing out of the trip were Denver Broncos running back Justin Forsett, San Francisco 49ers running back Carlos Hyde, Miami Dolphins wide receiver Kenny Stills and Seattle Seahawks defensive-end Cliff Avril.
Rambam Health Care Campus spokesman David Ratner said five players arrived at the planned visit to the hospital. According to the Times of Israel, the five players who went are Philadelphia Eagles linebacker Mychal Kendricks, Tennessee Titans tight end Delanie Walker, New Orleans Saints defensive-end Cameron Jordan, Oakland Raiders defensive tackle Dan Williams and Arizona Cardinals defensive-end Calais Campbell.
These players will get to experience the likes of Yad Vashem Holocaust memorial center and will meet with the Black Hebrews.