UnSmart (Broken Tele)Phone

I remember playing broken telephone as a kid. For those of you who have an inadequate childhood, this is the game that has us all sitting in a circle whispering messages in each other’s ears. The messages must sound similar, but cannot stay entirely the same.  Meaning “President Obama” could wind up as “I killed Osama” and then “There’s a bomb ahhh!” Well, you get the picture.

Sadly, this game has now clearly become the Middle East’s social media public relations campaign. That’s right. The ENTIRE Middle East. Well at least the majority Arab part of it. Israel seems to be just standing in the corner, being bypassed altogether. Giving a deaf ear to the media chaos being perpetrated around Her.

It’s been years of this complete bastardization of Israeli maneuvers and Zionist propaganda by the different pro-Palestinian groups. However, their activity has heightened as of late, culminating in this week’s tweet by Free Gaza Movement’s co-founder Greta Berlin saying:

“Zionists operated the concentration camps and helped murder millions of innocent Jews.”

The tweet also contained a link to a video of anti-Semitic conspiracy theorist Eustace Mullins delivering a message of how Hitler “allied with the Zionist Party, and the mission of the Nazis was to force the anti-Zionist Jews to accept Zionism, and this is what the concentration camps were about.” He argued that the “zi” in Nazi stood for Zionism.

Now Free Gaza is also the group that is known infamously for the flotilla event of 2010 that had allegedly wanted to just bring aid to the “poor” Gazans blockaded by Israel, but had indeed been found to be carrying a massive amount of weapons. They did act quickly denouncing and removing the message. But its co-founder had posted it. A co-founder clearly perpetrating hate speech even if she later claimed it had been intended for a private group. Any hate speech is still hate speech. Clearly the group is not just to Free Gaza. It’s to free the world of Zionism and all the hate and death that allegedly ensues from it.

If Israel had had the proper PR team, it would have publicized the tweet quickly and seamlessly, capitalizing on the fact that this had been the group that had said it was just bringing aid back in 2010. Israel is still feeling the ramifications for what occurred on the flotilla, and this was the perfect opportunity for them to show the world that sometimes they aren’t seeing the whole picture. Or hearing the entire context.

Sometimes all the ears in between mess up the true message.

About the Author
Melanie Goldberg is a current student at the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law. She also serves as the research assistant for Versa: The Israeli Supreme Court English Language Repository, and founded a chapter of The Louis D. Brandeis Center for Human Rights on her campus. Most recently, she was one of the recipients of The Jewish Week's "36 under 36" award.