As Western mainstream media is doing little to cover a balanced and accurate accounting of random Palestinian carnage directed specifically at Jews, Arab media portrays the subdued attackers with images of ‘innocent children executed by Israel.’
By Elior Levy
Arab and Palestinian social media has been abuzz with inciting images which portray the perpetrators of attacks against Israelis as innocent victims of Israeli aggression.
Disinformation is neither new nor a stranger to the Palestinian propaganda campaign, but it seems to have intensified by the recent events.
Almost every picture of a neutralized terrorist is quickly uploaded to social media, and is portrayed as a “cold blooded execution.”
The campaign hasn’t spared Mahmoud Abbas’ own spokesman, Nabil Abu Ruedeineh, who said on Monday that “Israel executed Hassan Manasra,” the 15-year-old who was killed after carrying out a stabbing in Jerusalem’s Pisgat Ze’ev district.
Abu Rudeineh compared neutralizing Manasra to the killing of Mohammed Al Dura during the second intifada, which the Palestinians attributed to Israel Defense Forces troops. He called Manasra’s killing “a cold blooded execution,” and called on the Israeli government to arrest those who shot him. Abu Rudeineh warned that things are likely to spiral out of control.
Generally speaking, terrorists who are arrested are portrayed as victims of the Israeli security forces’ “anti-Arab sentiment.” According to the Palestinians, IDF soldiers and Israeli police seek to hurt innocent Arabs, mainly women and children.
The involvement of minors in the recent attacks has been exploited by the Palestinians propaganda. A video showing Ahmed Manasra, 13, with his cousin Hassan Manasra,15, after they perpetrated Monday’s attack went viral on Palestinian social media. The two stabbed a 13-year-old Jewish boy, wounding him critically, and went on to stab Yosef Ben Shalom,21, wounding him seriously.
Ahmed was seriously wounded by security forces who attempted to subdue him, and his cousin Hassan was killed. The video showed Ahmed lying on the ground, wounded, and surrounded by security forces who seem to not provide him with medical care. As a result of the clip, Palestinian social media was abuzz with the hashtag: #Palestinian_child_was_executed. The posts made no mention of his involvement in the stabbing attack.
An image of the female terrorist who perpetrated a stabbing attack on Monday near Jerusalem’s Ammunition Hill also spread quickly on Palestinian social media. The terrorist, a 16-year-old from East Jerusalem, stabbed a Border Policeman and wounded him lightly, who in turn reacted quickly and shot the young assailant, wounding her moderately. The image shows her surrounded by police, as if she was an innocent victim rather than a subdued terrorist.
Another picture of a 3-year-old infant, which Palestinian reports claim was killed in an Israeli air strike in Gaza, went viral on social media. Some of the reports sought to draw a comparison between the infant and the iconic image of infant Syrian refugee Alan Kurdi who drowned and washed ashore in Turkey last month.
Major Arab media outlets like Al Jazeera and Al Maydan have covered the terror wave extensively, reporting on every Palestinian death in a way that presents them as victims of assassinations by security forces, even if they were involved in stabbing attacks.
More moderate Arab outlets typically report that a “Palestinian was killed after ‘allegedly’ stabbing an Israeli.”
Concurrently, the Palestinian narrative of an Israeli attempt to change the status quo on the Temple Mount has gained traction, in addition to the constant claims by the Palestinians that Israeli security forces are purposely targeting journalists who are covering clashes in the West Bank.
Every day sees new Palestinian incitement songs uploaded to social media, in an attempt to rally public opinion by building on the existing religious tensions, in order to encourage more attacks.
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