Israeli Model Bar Refaeli Takes Off Hijab in Ad Promoting ‘Freedom’

Israeli model Bar Refaeli has sparked widespread condemnation for her participation in an ad in which she removes a hijab to promote “freedom,” according to a Wednesday report from BuzzFeed News. In the ad, first released on Oct. 29 by Israeli clothing company Hoodie, Refaeli is first seen with her face covered by a hijab and a niqab, alongside a Hebrew caption reading, “Iran is here?” She then strips out of the hijab and niqab, to the tune of a song that says, “It’s all about freedom.” The tagline for the campaign is “Freedom is basic.”

Almost immediately, the ad drew criticism on social-media sites, with users calling for partner organizations to drop Refaeli. “I felt like vomiting,” one woman told BuzzFeed. “I sat there telling myself MAYBE there’s a different message I’m not getting from this. I told myself there is NO WAY that someone so famous would do something so blatantly Islamophobic, but I found no justification.” “This has to be the most ignorant and racist ad I’ve ever seen and I can’t believe a whole company approved this,” another woman said on Twitter. “I’m disgusted and at a loss of words.” Refaeli and Hoodies both deleted their posts on Instagram, BuzzFeed notes, and a Facebook page linked to Hoodies was deleted.