"In a recent online ad, Rachael Ray is wearing a black-and-white silk scarf with a paisley design. It was selected by the stylist for the advertising shoot," Margie Myers, senior VP-communications for Dunkin' Brands, said in a statement. "Absolutely no symbolism was intended."
"However, as of this past weekend, we are no longer using the online ad because the possibility of misperception detracted from its original intention to promote our iced coffee," she said.
Conservative bloggers including Fox News commentator Michelle Malkin took up the cause last Friday, and Dunkin' quietly pulled the spot from online agency Studiocom, Boston, over the weekend. But today the controversy was being called the "keffiyeh kerfuffle," with stories in the Boston Globe and the Los Angeles Times.
"It was with some dismay that I learned last week that Dunkin' Donuts' spokeswoman Rachael Ray, the ubiquitous TV hostess, posed for one of the company's ads in what appeared to be a black-and-white keffiyeh," Ms. Malkin wrote on her eponymous blog.
The keffiyeh, "for the clueless, is the traditional scarf of Arab men that has come to symbolize murderous Palestinian jihad," Ms. Malkin said. She added that it has been "mainstreamed by ignorant and not-so-ignorant fashion designers, celebrities and left-wing icons."
Ms. Ray declined to comment.