Israelis ♥ Iranians on Facebook

Couple spreads message of peace on social network, causing stir in global media

Five days after an Israeli couple professed its love for the Iranian people over Facebook, the campaign continued to make waves in the global media.

CNN‘s website dedicated a prime spot for the campaign Tuesday, exposing its readers to what was quickly turning into the week’s most heartwarming story.

“It is not possible to dial an Iranian number from an Israeli telephone,” the article read. “It will simply not go through… That is why it was so difficult for Ronny Edry, an Israeli graphic designer based in Tel Aviv, to get his message across to the people of Iran.”

The message, put together by Edry and his graphic designer partner Michal Tamir, was simple: “Iranians, we love you. We will never bomb your country.” A poster bearing the slogan was posted on Facebook, prompting thousands to share it, comment on it and make their own versions.

The CNN article itself was recommended by more than 1,000 readers over various social networks, but was only one indicator of the widespread exposure that the initiative received. The Qatar-based Al-Jazeera network put aside its notorious criticism of the Jewish state, publishing its own coverage of the campaign, under the headline “Israel hearts Iran.”

The phenomenon also reached Youtube  

“Amid growing tensions between Israel and Iran, two Israeli graphic designers have created a Facebook campaign aimed at challenging the warmongering rhetoric,” the article read, raking in over a thousand “likes” on Facebook.

 

Initiative draws praise, skepticism

Al-Jazeera listed examples of posters and comments made by Israelis and Iranians in response to the campaign.

“Wow, I am an Iranian (who lives in Canada), I cannot express my feeling when I read this,” one web surfer wrote in response to a photo of an elderly Israeli couple posing with Edry and Tamir’s slogan. “I promise you (that) Iranians have the same feeling about you too, I have met a couple from your country and we had a great time talking and eating with each other. I wish one day we can all live in peace.”

Like any popular campaign, Edry and Tamir’s initiative was not spared from parody. One image shown on Al-Jazeera featured Israeli comedians posing as Iranian nuclear scientists, with the slogan “Israelis, we will never bomb your country. We love you.”

Readers’ opinions on the phenomenon were split.

I love the initiative of those peace loving guys, and I appreciate their efforts,” one reader commented on the Al-Jazeera article. “But I really hope that the Israelis are saying: ‘Palestinians, we will not bomb you any more, we love you!’ I’m more than sure that Palestinians, and the whole Muslim world will respond with much more respect and gratitude.”

Another reader’s response was more skeptical: “I believe their ‘Initiative’ is more like this saying I once heard. ‘Every once in a while, be NICE to your enemy, as it confuses the hell out of them!'”

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By Ynet reporters

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