The BBC: The Most Potent State Propagandist

The BBC: The Most Potent State Propagandist

By Dr. David Halpin,

Blatant disinformation spews from the western media. And law is never mentioned. Sen.Mark Rubio can threaten a most cruel assassination of Nicolas Maduro, whilst Trump, Bolton (1) and Pence promise that ‘everything is on the table’. Psychopaths join together very easily and according to Hare (2) they make up about 4% of all populations worldwide. 

What the voters in all those ‘democratic’ nations fail to realise is that the characteristics of the psychopath make for an easy ascent of the greasy pole. Charm, lying and an able tongue are a few.

But how are they sustained? How do they escape preventive detention?

Of course, the ‘media’ is key. It works on the in-built prejudices of the subject populations, which it helps to generate. It makes sure they are not informed and that the big lies sink in with ease. I recall reading that the Third Reich found value in the polished, cunning British propaganda.

The reporting of the Syrian ‘civil war’ by the BBC is a prime example. In these islands the BBC/State Propagandist is ace.

To respond to it one needs to listen to the audio or watch the television so one can laboriously record the words. At one time the flagship programme, Today, produced a transcript of the whole three hours. With word recognition technology that would be easy to revive but that will not happen. The fact is that in every hour of its national and World Service Broadcasts there is cardinal omission, usually of the victim nation’s voice, distortion or frank lies. There is much more, and the BBC is skilled at inserting important nuances. As a lonely individual in an ocean of lies, it is impossible to keep up.

Here are a few fragments of its recent output.

a.

Dear Mr Landale, 8-02-19

I saw you speak on the BBC1 evening news about 4 days ago. Venezuela, in spite of its vast mineral wealth, has been destabilized. Corruption by the rich and perhaps poor governance are two factors, but another are the sanctions installed in 2015 by the USA against international law. We know the latter is worse than hollow.  I do not know whether other countries have been strong armed in collaborating with these sanctions as with Iran.

I believe you did not mention sanctions in your piece.  BBC coverage of this country in these last few weeks has been unbalanced.  Will Grant in Cuba does better. (Ed. He does not it seems)

yours sincerely David Halpin FRCS

No reply

b.

Malaysia’s Minister of Youth and Sports, Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman, said the country stood by its decision to bar Israeli athletes.

“If hosting an international sporting event is more important than standing up for our Palestinian brothers and sisters who get murdered, maimed and tortured by the Netanyahu regime, that means Malaysia has truly lost its moral compass,” he said in a statement. (3)

The British State Broadcaster could not say these truths to the millions. No coverage by the BBC.

c.

Chris Mason

Chris Mason (image on the right, from his twitter account), a BBC Westminster correspondent is engaging. He was speaking of the critical reaction to the loss of Shamima Begum’s third baby in a refugee camp in Syria. She had gone to live with the ‘jihadis’ at age 15 with two girlfriends. Home Secretary Sajid Javid had stripped British citizenship from her. (It emerged he had done the same to two other women previously.)

He failed to say that the UK had supported some of these super-terrorists who came from outside Syria. The PM and the then Foreign Secretary had both stated their intention of ‘toppling Assad’. The aim of this proxy destruction of an ancient country was clear. So their shunning of this young woman and her three dead babies was a montrous hypocrisy. The BBC did its duty and joined in. And massaged it further by speaking of the UK giving £170 million ‘to Syria’.

At another time it reported that a UK government spokesman said the death of any child was “tragic and deeply distressing for the family”. As it was to the hundreds of dear children and their mothers who fleeing from the manufactured war drowned in the Mediterranean Sea. Or those that were blown apart or maimed by the ‘jihadis’ as ordered by Saudi Arabia and its slaves to money.

The BBC pumped out massive black propaganda to justify the illegal wars on Iraq and Libya, and continues to distort completely the maelstrom of suffering and destruction brought by plan to Syria. The journalist, Robert Stuart, ‘contended that sequences filmed by BBC personnel and others at Atareb Hospital, Aleppo on 26 August 2013 purporting to show the aftermath of an incendiary bomb attack on a nearby school are largely, if not entirely, staged.’ His evidence is here. (4)

The BBC distracts with much ‘entertainment’, including sport, and now has trailers with fast changing mindless images. It appears to be attempting to further shrink thought and morality. The other night at a Comic Relief show in a theatre with a largely female audience, three naked men were on the stage. They kept swapping balloons from their chests to genitalia, and turned to present their ugly backsides to a largely embarassed audience.

There are peerless BBC programmes. Among them are Countryfile, which centres on farming and the beauty of the British Isles, and Call the Midwife. This recalled the caring spirit and the energy of the young NHS. Within its ranks there are moral, imaginative and very talented people. But they cannot have much influence on the output.

The ether is dominated by the psychopath with talk of endless aggressive war including sanctions, as with the collective, long and increasing punishment of two million people in Gaza.

Please someone, take Bolton and show him a tight flower bud in midwinter and later as it emerges in all its beauty and intricacy. Take Trump, alone, and see the mother suckling her tiny baby. An ultimate symbol of peace.

*

Note to readers: please click the share buttons below. Forward this article to your email lists. Crosspost on your blog site, internet forums. etc.

David Halpin FRCS is a retired orthopaedic and trauma surgeon who yearns for peace and especially in Palestine. He has also spent much time, with a few others, pleading for an inquest on Dr David Kelly, which uniquely has never happened. The NHS is his other major concern. His woodlands that he planted give some peace.

Notes

1. http://members5.boardhost.com/xxxxx/msg/1552205009.html Bolton given “Defender of Israel” award from Zionist lobby that helped elect him

2. http://www.minddisorders.com/Flu-Inv/Hare-Psychopathy-Checklist.html

3. https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/sport/paralympics-malaysia-stripped-of-right-to-host-world-11172762

4. https://bbcpanoramasavingsyriaschildren.wordpress.com/2016/03/28/bbc-trust-no-evidence-that-presenters-facebook-images-brought-bbc-into-disrepute/

Featured image is from Media Lens

Source of pro-israel (apartheid state) guerrilla warriors on social media exposed

Source of pro-Israel Guerrilla Warriors on Social Media Exposed
By Nasim Ahmed

In this photo illustration, The Twitter logo is displayed on the screen of an Apple Inc. iPhone 5 in this arranged photograph on September 25, 2016 in Paris, France (Photo illustration by Chesnot/Getty Images)

A number of prominent Jewish-American leaders are funding covert, anonymous campaigns targeting pro-Palestinian student activists, The Forward has found. The Jewish daily newspaper, which has been publishing valuable information concerning the source of funding for these hyper-aggressive and shadowy groups – which spearhead coordinated hate campaigns against critics of the Zionist state – has uncovered the identities of those behind hidden social media accounts.

Community heads and prominent Jewish organisations with a carefully-crafted, respectable public profile have donated millions to fund secret projects targeting students and lecturers, the report has found. On a number of occasions, their blind support for Israel has seen them bankroll far-right and anti-Muslim hate groups.

The latest pro-Israeli group to be exposed by The Forward is the campaign targeting the pro-Palestinian campus network Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP). SJP is said to be the most well-known advocate of the Palestinian cause on US campuses. It has been the target of a pro-Israel group known as SJP Uncovered, which anonymously attacks student activists affiliated with SJP across the country. With more than 100,000 followers on Facebook, SJP Uncovered has gone after pro-Palestinian students by maintaining a veil of anonymity that is said to be all-but impenetrable.

Until now, the source of funding for SJP Uncovered had been a mystery. The Forward has now been able to shed light on the organisation to reveal that the site is a secret project of the Israel on Campus Coalition (ICC), a Washington DC-based pro-Israel organisation tied to most mainstream funders and organisations in the Jewish community.

On its official website, the ICC says that its vision is to create a campus environment where “dialogue and ideas are freely exchanged about Israel”. Publicly, the ICC presents a respectable face typical of nearly all pro-Israeli groups, but privately it is funding one of the most aggressive and shadowy student groups responsible for hateful campaigns against critics of the Zionist state. The Forward revealed that the ICC paid over $1 million in the 2016/2017 fiscal year to SJP Uncovered, in that time also running vicious campaigns against students with the aid of political consulting firms.

Until around 2014, the ICC is said to have been a standard pro-Israel advocacy group receiving donations from the largest and most mainstream Jewish-American foundations. In 2015, its operations changed to “covert, anonymous campaigns targeting pro-Palestinian student activists, often with the help of top-tier paid professional political consultants,” according to the investigative report.

Describing the change in focus, one former pro-Israeli campus official said: “It was clear that the old way of doing business […] was not making the cut, and was not enough, and there was a totally new offensive approach to things.” He added:

The overall framing was [that] the pro-Israel community is no longer going to sit back and let things happen, they are going to go on the offense […] It was very clear that going on the offensive to them meant going after students and the organizations that were bringing BDS.

With the change in emphasis in 2015 towards more aggressive campaigns, the ICC began hiring paid political consultants – including opposition researchers – to work on campuses. It transformed itself into a cog in what is often described as Israel’s secret global war against pro-Palestinian activists, which is operated by a dedicated ministry in Tel Aviv known as the Ministry of Strategic Affairs. Its main function is to spearhead Israel’s overt and covert efforts to smear the nonviolent Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement that is modelled on the global campaign that helped end Apartheid in South Africa. In November, the Electronic Intifada published in full an undercover Al Jazeera documentary that revealed some of the ministry’s tactics. The documentary was censored, allegedly after Israel lobby pressure on Qatar, which funds Al Jazeera.

SJP Uncovered is one of many pro-Israel organisations to emerge from a new consensus within sections of the Jewish-American community. They believed that defeating the global BDS movement was a key priority, which could only be achieved through aggressive means. Such tactics, however, not only risked falling foul of the rules of respectable public institutions, it was bad for their image.  The solution for Zionist and pro-Israel groups, both in the US and Israel, was to adopt secretive and clandestine tactics against their targets in an effort to protect their reputation. One of the best known of these operations is the formerly-anonymous website Canary Mission, which posts political dossiers on college students. The site went live in 2015, and has since grown to include dossiers on thousands of students.

A series of Forward exposés in October revealed that a foundation controlled by the Jewish Community Federation of San Francisco, a major Jewish charity with an annual budget of over $100 million, had donated $100,000 to the website, whose work has drawn comparisons to a McCarthyite blacklist. An Haaretz profile of the Canary Mission found that, for three years, the website had spread fear among undergraduate activists by posting more than a thousand political dossiers on student supporters of Palestinian rights. At the same time, the website had gone to great lengths to hide the digital and financial trail connecting it to its donors and staff. Registered through a secrecy service, the site had been untraceable until recently.

While the federation had assured that it was a “one-time grant” that would never happen again, the uncovering of a publicly respectable pro-Israel organisations giving funds to operate clandestine hate campaigns against pro-Palestinian activists triggered further investigations. The Canary Mission was just the tip of the iceberg, as tax filings seen by the magazine +972 showed that there was a pattern of systemic financing of radical right-wing and anti-Muslim groups.

Why was 2015 pivotal to this shift in strategy? Jewish leaders in the US, says Forward reporter Josh Nathan-Kazis, decided to spend significant communal resources attacking college students in that year because there was a coming-together of Israel’s spy culture and Jewish-American mega donors like Sheldon Adelson and Haim Saban. Both felt that the work being carried out by mainstream Jewish organisations was unsatisfactory. Wanting to shift the entire tenor of the Jewish communal approach to fighting anti-Semitism and BDS, major Jewish organisations were called to a secret meeting in Las Vegas, Nevada.

During this 2015 meeting, there was a consensus for a push towards more aggressive responses to BDS. A new initiative, named after Jewish guerrilla warriors Maccabees, was formed. On its website, the Maccabee taskforce – which claims that the BDS movement is spreading anti-Semitism across the world – says it is “determined to help students combat this hate by bringing them the strategies and resources they need to tell the truth about Israel”.

Strategies developed by Israeli think tanks like the Reut Institute became the playbook for the aggressive tactics that is said to have come into maturity during that period. These tactics, Nathan-Kazis explains, called for pro-Israel advocates to “out, name and shame” harsh critics of Israel, and to “frame them […] as anti-peace, anti-Semitic, or dishonest purveyors of double standards”. They talked about “establishing a ‘price tag’” for attacks on Israel and “isolating” advocacy groups that attack Israel, while “organizing regular meetings of pro-Israel networks”.

This article was originally published by MEMO” –

Turkey Tells US They Have Video That Proves Khashoggi Was Killed

Local Editor

The Turkish government has informed US officials it has audio and video recordings that prove that Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi was killed inside Saudi Consulate in Istanbul, according to a report by the Washington Post.

The video and audio recording reportedly show that Saudi Consulate security team detained Jamal Khashoggi after he entered the building on October 2 to obtain some documents for his upcoming wedding, and then killed him and dismembered his body.

According to US and Turkish officials cited by the Washington Post, the audio recordings in particular provide “persuasive and gruesome” evidence that the Saudi security is responsible for the journalist’s death.

“The voice recording from inside the embassy lays out what happened to Jamal after he entered,” said one source with knowledge of the recording.

“You can hear his voice and the voices of men speaking Arabic,” the source added. “You can hear how he was interrogated, tortured and then murdered.”

The other person quoted by Washington Post says the recording proves Khashoggi was beaten by the Saudis.

The existence of these recordings explain why Turkish officials were so fast to accuse Saudis of killing the journalists, the newspaper reads. However, Ankara is reluctant to release these recordings as it would reveal the ways Turkish intelligence spies upon foreign nations on its soil, the source said.

Jamal Khashoggi, a contributor to the Washington Post, known for his criticism of Saudi King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed, has been missing since October 2 after allegedly visiting the Saudi consulate in Istanbul to acquire documentation for his upcoming marriage. The Saudis denied allegations that the journalist has been captured or murdered and insisted he left the building later the same day.

In the meantime, media companies are pulling out of Saudi investment conference over the growing outrage of Khashoggi disappearance, Reuters reported Thursday. Journalists and executives of various major media companies, including New York Times, CNBC, Economist and Viacom have already announced their decision not to attend the event. The Financial Times reportedly announced it is reviewing its involvement as a media partner.

Source: News Agencies, Edited by website team

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Omidyar’s Intercept Teams Up with War-Propaganda Firm #Bellingcat

Omidyar’s Intercept Teams Up with War-Propaganda Firm Bellingcat

Despite promoting itself as an “independent” and open-source investigation site, Bellingcat has received a significant portion of its funding from Google, which is also one of the most powerful U.S. military contractors and whose rise to prominence was directly aided by the CIA.

NEW YORK — The Intercept, along with its parent company First Look Media, recently hosted a workshop for pro-war, Google-funded organization Bellingcat in New York. The workshop, which cost $2,500 per person to attend and lasted five days, aimed to instruct participants in how to perform investigations using “open source” tools — with Bellingcat’s past, controversial investigations for use as case studies. The exact details of what occurred during the workshop have not been made public and Bellingcat founder Eliot Higgins declined to elaborate on the workshop when pressed on social media.The decision on the part of The Intercept is particularly troubling given that the publication has long been associated with the track records of its founding members, such as Jeremy Scahill and Glenn Greenwald, who have long been promoted as important “progressive” and “anti-war” voices in the U.S. media landscape.

Greenwald publicly distanced himself from the decision to host the workshop, stating on Twitter that he was not involved in making that decision and that — if he had been — it was not one “that I would have made.” However, he stopped short of condemning the decision.

Bellingcat’s open support for foreign military intervention and tendency to promote NATO/U.S. war propaganda are unsurprising when one considers how the group is funded and the groups with which it regularly collaborates.

For instance, Bellingcat regularly works with the Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project (OCCRP), which – according to the late journalist Robert Parry – “engages in ‘investigative journalism’ that usually goes after governments that have fallen into disfavor with the United States and then are singled out for accusations of corruption.” OCCRP is notably funded by USAID and the controversial George Soros-funded Open Society Foundations.

In addition, Bellingcat’s founder Eliot Higgins is employed by the Atlantic Council, which is partially funded by the U.S. State Department, NATO and U.S. weapons manufacturers. It should come as little surprise then that the results of Bellingcat’s “findings” often fit neatly with narratives promoted by NATO and the U.S. government despite their poor track record in terms of accuracy.

Bellingcat’s funding is even more telling than its professional associations. Indeed, despite promoting itself as an “independent” and open-source investigation site, Bellingcat has received a significant portion of its funding from Google, which is also one of the most powerful U.S. military contractors and whose rise to prominence was directly aided by the CIA.

Google has also been actively promoting regime change in countries like Syria, a policy that Bellingcat also promotes. As one example, leaked emails between Jared Cohen, former director of Google Ideas (now Jigsaw), and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton revealed that Google developed software aimed at assisting al-Qaeda and other Syrian opposition groups in boosting their ranks. Furthermore, Cohen was once described by Stratfor intelligence analysts as a “loose cannon” for his deep involvement in Middle Eastern regime-change efforts.

Under President Donald Trump, Google’s connections to the U.S. government have become even more powerful, as the current Trump-appointed Director of National Intelligence once worked as a corporate lobbyist for Google.

 

Synergy in the service of empire

Given the clear alliances between Bellingcat and the military-industrial complex, The Intercept’s decision to host a Bellingcat workshop in its New York offices may seem surprising. However, The Intercept has long promoted Bellingcat in its written work and its parent company has actually been associated with Bellingcat since 2015.

Indeed, Google-owned YouTube announced in 2015 the formation of the “First Draft coalition,” which nominally sought to bring “together a group of thought leaders and pioneers in social media journalism to create educational resources on how to verify eyewitness media.” That coalition united Bellingcat with the now-defunct Reported.ly – another venture of The Intercept’s parent company, First Look Media.

In the years since, The Intercept has repeatedly promoted Bellingcat in its articles, having called the Atlantic Council-connected, Google-funded group “a reputable U.K.-based organization devoted to analyzing images coming out of conflict zones.” Furthermore, prior to the recent workshop in late September between The Intercept and Bellingcat, both jointly participated in another workshop hosted in London earlier this year in April.

 

 

Omidyar’s connections

In addition, the Intercept’s main funder – eBay billionaire Pierre Omidyar – shares innumerable connections to the U.S. government and has helped fund regime-change operations abroad in the past, suggesting a likely reason behind the publication’s willingness to associate itself with Bellingcat.

For instance, Omidyar made more visits to the Obama White House between 2009 and 2013 than Google’s Eric Schmidt, Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg or Amazon’s Jeff Bezos. He also donated $30 million to the Clinton global initiative and directly co-invested with the State Department — funding groups, some of them overtly fascist, that worked to overthrow Ukraine’s democratically elected government in 2014.

Even after Obama left office, Omidyar has continued to fund USAID, particularly its overseas program aimed at “advancing U.S. national security interests” abroad. Omidyar’s Ulupono Initiative also cosponsors one of the Pentagon’s most important contractor expos, a direct link between Omidyar initiatives and the U.S. military-industrial complex.

Such promotion of the regime-change wars has been reflected in reporting done at The Intercept, particularly in regards to Syria. Indeed, Intercept writers covering Syria frequently promote Syrian “rebels” and the opposition while also promoting pro-regime-change talking points.

Another former Intercept contributor and now Intercept “fact checker,” Mariam Elba, wrote a poorly researched article that sought to link the Syrian government to U.S. white nationalists, claiming that the Syrian government sought to “homogenize” the country despite its support for religious and ethnic minorities in stark contrast to the Syrian opposition. Notably, Elba recently praised the Intercept/Bellingcat workshop, which she had attended.

If that weren’t enough, last year the paper hired Maryam Saleh, a journalist who has called Shia Muslims “dogs” and has taken to Twitter in the past to downplay the role of the U.S. coalition in airstrikes in Syria. Saleh also has ties to the U.S.-financed propaganda group Kafranbel Media Center, which also has close relations with the terrorist group Ahrar al-Sham.

Furthermore, MintPress noted last year that The Intercept had withheld a key document from the Edward Snowden cache proving the Syrian opposition was taking marching orders from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. The Intercept published that document only after the U.S. State Department itself began to report more honestly on the nature of these so-called “rebels,” even though The Intercept had had that document in its possession since 2013.

Even “anti-interventionist” Intercept journalists like Jeremy Scahill and Glenn Greenwald have
come under fire this past year for allegedly promoting inaccurate statements that supported pro-regime-change narratives in Syria, particularly in regards to an alleged chemical weapons attack in Douma. That attack is now widely believed to have been staged by the White Helmets.

Thus, while The Intercept has long publicly promoted itself as an anti-interventionist and progressive media outlet, it is becoming clearer that – largely thanks to its ties to Omidyar – it is increasingly an organization that has more in common with Bellingcat, a group that launders NATO and U.S. propaganda and disguises it as “independent” and “investigative journalism.”

Author’s Note | John Helsby contributed research, particularly in regards to social media, to this report.

Editors Note: After objection from Bellingcat founder Eliot Higgins, this story was updated to read: “The exact details of what occurred during the workshop have not been made public”, This was updated from the original: “The details of the workshop have not been made public” as Higgins interpreted this to mean details made prior to the event. MintPress was well aware of the pre-event details that were made public prior to the workshop, such as cost to attend, date and location as a link that the announcement of those details can be found in the second sentence of the article, which remains unchanged.

Top Photo | Bana Alabed promotes Bellingcat at an event put on by the Atlantic Council’s Digital Forensic Research Lab. Photo | Twitter

Whitney Webb is a staff writer for MintPress News and a contributor to Ben Swann’s Truth in Media. Her work has appeared on Global Research, the Ron Paul Institute and 21st Century Wire, among others. She has also made radio and TV appearances on RT and Sputnik. She currently lives with her family in southern Chile.

When Sayyed Nasrallah Deeply Impacts The “Israeli” Consciousness

Yasser Rahal

“The warrior should be wakeful because if he sleeps the enemy does not sleep.” This is advice from Imam Ali (PBUH) gave. Hezbollah’s secretary general memorized it well. He uses it to advise others and repeats it during every Zionist threat to Lebanon.

The “Israeli” media knows exactly what these words mean. It knows that Sayyed is a meticulous follower of the Zionist entity’s news. From time to time, it acknowledges Sayyed’s superiority in terms of the media and psychological warfare that stems from facts rather than illusions. On more than one occasion, the Israeli media recognized the accuracy and quality of the follow-up and translation of the resistance’s media of everything that is published in the usurping entity in an attempt to expose it to the public.

A week ago, Amos Harel wrote in Haaretz, in a piece titled Nasrallah’s Propaganda that

“in a speech at the end of last week (the liberation of the Jroud speech), Nasrallah quoted Brick’s criticism of the “Israeli” army’s performance. He also mentioned Yaniv Kuovich’s ’s article which he published here regarding a 40 percent increase in the percentage of soldiers visiting psychiatric clinics in the army.”

Harel refers back to Sayyed Nasrallah’s famous “Spider Web” speech on the entity and its media when he delivered it in Bent Jbeil in 2000. It still resonates until today.

“Nasrallah’s firm hypothesis is based on the most famous speech, the ‘Spider Web’ speech in Bint Jbeil immediately after the end of the “Israeli” army’s withdrawal from southern Lebanon in May 2000: the “Israeli” society is weak and pressured. If the Arabs knew how to act against “Israel” with determination and strength, they would be able to demand more concessions.”

We continue with the enemy’s media and “Sayyed’s” impact on it. Channel 10 remarked that “Nasrallah is a brilliant and very clever speaker who did not make a lot of mistakes in analyzing the weaknesses of the “Israeli” society.”

In an interview with the Arab affairs correspondent, Zvi Yehezkeli, the presenter said (while analyzing the second liberation anniversary speech):

“If Nasrallah were not on the side of the ‘bad guys’, we would have said that he was a brilliant speaker and a very intelligent man. In a speech he delivered yesterday, he analyzed the weaknesses of the “Israeli” army and did not made a mistake.”

Yehezkeli replied,

“I agree that Nasrallah is a brilliant speaker in the Arab world. But regarding the content, I see it a bit differently. Nasrallah’s speech reminds us of the speech of the ‘Spider Web’.”

Take note of the choice of the Bint Jbeil speech. Some compared him to Gamal Abdel Nasser for his brilliance in speechmaking. He spoke about the weak society or what he called in 2006 prior to the war as the “Espresso Society”. This description was still present in Yehezkeli’s mind after 12 years. He said that the “Espresso Society” will not go to war for the two captured soldiers. He also said this in a press conference on the day of their capture. The “Espresso Society” went to war. It did not go the way it was planned. It was an implicit recognition of defeat. Once again he says this while speaking about defeatism. I agree with him on this angle at least when he enumerates “Israel’s” failures by saying, “the invincible army may not be the only description for “Israel”.” Then came the recognition that the army is not fit to represent the defeated entity.

“What impressed me is his very modern knowledge of the “Israeli” press. There is someone who reads things to him very carefully, analyzes them very intelligently and never makes mistakes when he points out the weaknesses in “Israeli” society,” the presenter added.

Yehezkeli: There are those who say that the “Israeli” office in Hezbollah is Nasrallah himself. He does not allow others to read it. He sits and reads. In an interview he spoke about how long it takes him to read the “Israeli” press and the “Israeli” society. He is a person whose goal is to analyze things in society that have not been analyzed before. He also has intelligence capabilities. However, he still reads the press, quoting newspapers such as Haaretz, Yedioth Ahronoth as well as opinion polls, analyses, analysts and experts. But he does not know Hebrew.

This was recognition of Sayyed familiarity with the nature of the Zionist society and its weaknesses. It also praised the monitoring and the Hebrew-to-Arabic translation team. This is not the first time that the enemy’s media deals with the quality, experience and accuracy of the abilities of the resistance’s media to keep track of the Zionist entity. A few years ago before the Zionist withdrawal and the humiliating defeat of the “invincible” army, a media specialist conducted a comparative study between the resistance’s media and the enemy’s one. In it they looked at details including the quality of the paper used by the resistance’s media and the nature of the technical production and covers designs. It concluded that the resistance’s media excelled past that of the enemy. We continue with the presenter when he asks about the fear of death complex gripping the families of the occupation soldiers:

“When he said in this speech that the “Israeli” elite wanted to send their children to the 8200 [cyber warfare] unit and less to the front. He recognized something … (signs of admiration and astonishment on the face of the presenter).”

Here, we pause at the surprise that occurred in the war on Syria, where the number of participants among the ranks of the resistance doubled. Reports were made by families who were insisting to send their children to the battlefronts. Here, we discover the reason behind the admiration and astonishment of the presenter. The resistance’s society does not fear death, especially when martyrdom is one of two choices, victory being the first. This was in contrary to the enemy’s society where the fear of death makes families want to send their son to work behind a desk.

Attempting to create a fabricated picture of the truth Yehezkeli concludes:

“Certainly, I think what he said is part of psychological warfare that shows distress ahead of the next confrontation.”

“But nevertheless, he certainly brought something painful to our stomachs.”

He ends the interview with a passage from Sayyed Nasrallah’s speech about the soldiers seeing psychiatrists.

The speech on the anniversary of the Second Liberation Day opened a deep wound. It was painful for the enemy. It reopened an old wound, which is the May 25, 2000 [“Israeli”] withdrawal from Lebanon.

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Are the mainstream U.S. ‘news’ media evil?

Source

By Eric Zuesse for The Saker Blog — August 15, 2018

US media

William Binney, the U.S. National Security Agency’s former technical director for global analysis, has, for the past year, been globe-trotting to investigate the actual evidence regarding the official Russiagate investigations, and he finds that the Special Counsel, Robert Mueller, who is prosecuting Russia’s Government, can only accuse Russian officials, not convict any of them on at least the important charges, because conclusive evidence exists and has already been made public online, making clear that the important accusations against those officials are false. However, Binney can’t get any of the U.S. major ‘news’ media’s interest in this fact, nor even into openly discussing it with them. Apparently, they don’t want to know. Binney is knocking on their doors, and they refuse to answer.

Patrick Lawrence, at the non-mainstream U.S. news medium Consortium News, headlined on Monday August 13th, “‘Too Big to Fail’: Russia-gate One Year After VIPS Showed a Leak, Not a Hack and he reported what Binney has found and has been trying to get the major U.S. ‘news’ media to present to the American public.

The “VIPS” there is Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity, and they are 17 whistleblowing former high officials of the CIA, NSA, State Department, and other U.S. officials with top-secret national-security clearances, who jointly signed and published on 24 July 2017, their report, which likewise was at Consortium News, Intel Vets Challenge ‘Russia Hack’ Evidence”, in which they confirmed the validity of a 9 July 2017 report that had been published by Elizabeth Vos of Disobedient Media . com, which was titled New Research Shows Guccifer 2.0 Files Were Copied Locally, Not Hacked and which I then reported in more ordinary language seven days later under the headline “Russiagate Exposed: It’s a Fraud”. I quoted there the analysis’s basic finding “that the DNC computer network which the media tells us and the DNC tells us was hacked by the Russians, … was physically accessed by someone within close proximity of the DNC” and not outside the United States (Russia or anywhere else). The original research-report had been done by an anonymous person who called himself “the forensicator,” and he had sent it to Adam Carter, another highly technically knowledgeable person, who happened to be at Disobedient Media, and who then worked with Vos to prepare her article on it.

Binney, as the nation’s now-retired top NSA expert in the analysis of such matters, then followed up, during the past year, in order to probe more deeply, by contacting various individuals who had been involved behind the scenes; and Patrick Lawrence’s article was a report of what Binney had found. It’s this:

The forensic scientists working with VIPS continued their research and experiments after VIPS50 was published. So have key members of the VIPS group, notably William Binney, the National Security Agency’s former technical director for global analysis and designer of programs the agency still uses to monitor internet traffic. Such work continues as we speak, indeed. This was always the intent: “Evidence to date” was the premise of VIPS50. Over the past year there have been confirmations of the original thesis and some surprises that alter secondary aspects of it. Let us look at the most significant of these findings.

At the time I reported on the findings of VIPS and associated forensic scientists, that the most fundamental evidence that the events of summer 2016 constituted a leak, not a hack, was the transfer rate—the speed at which data was copied. The speed proven then was an average of 22.7 megabytes per second. …

The fastest internet transfer speed achieved, during the New Jersey–to–Britain test, was 12.0 megabytes of data per second. Since this time it has emerged from G-2.0’s metadata that the detected average speed—the 22.7 megabytes per second—included peak speeds that ran as high as 49.1 megabytes per second, impossible over the internet. “You’d need a dedicated, leased, 400–megabit line all the way to Russia to achieve that result,” Binney said in a recent interview. … That remains the bedrock evidence of the case VIPS and others advance without qualification. “No one—including the FBI, the CIA, and the NSA—has come out against this finding,” Binney said Monday. …

The identity of Guccifer 2.0, who claimed to be a Romanian hacker but which the latest Mueller indictment claims is a construct of the GRU, Russian military intelligence, has never been proven. The question is what G–2.0 did with or to the data in question. It turns out that both more, and less, is known about G–2.0 than was thought to have been previously demonstrated. This work has been completed only recently. It was done by Binney in collaboration with Duncan Campbell, a British journalist who has followed the Russia-gate question closely.

Peak Speed Established

Binney visited Campbell in Brighton, England, early this past spring. They examined all the metadata associated with the files G–2.0 has made public. They looked at the number of files, the size of each, and the time stamps at the end of each. It was at this time that Binney and Campbell established the peak transfer rate at 49.1 megabytes per second. … “Now you need to prove everything you might think about him,” Binney told me. “We have no way of knowing anything about him or what he has done, apart from manipulating the files. …

The conclusions initially drawn on time and location in VIPS50 are now subject to these recent discoveries. “In retrospect, giving ‘equal importance’ status to data pertaining to the locale was mistaken,” Ray McGovern, a prominent VIPS member, wrote in a recent note. “The key finding on transfer speed always dwarfed it in importance.” … 

How credible are those indictments in view of what is now known about G–2.0?

Binney told me: “Once we proved G–2.0 is a fabrication and a manipulator, the timing and location questions couldn’t be answered but really didn’t matter. I don’t right now see a way of absolutely proving either time or location. But this doesn’t change anything. We know what we know: The intrusion into the Democratic National Committee mail was a local download—wherever ‘local’ is.” That doesn’t change. As to Rosenstein, he’ll have a lot to prove.”

However, yet another technically knowledgeable analyst of the available evidence, George Eliason, claims that to assert that there were only “leaks” and not also “hacks” would clearly be wrong because there were both. On August 14th, he bannered at Washington’s Blog, Beyond The DNC Leak: Hacks and Treason and he wrote:

There were multiple DNC hacks. There is also clear proof supporting the download to a USB stick and subsequent information exchange (leak) to Wikileaks. All are separate events.

Here’s what’s different in the information I’ve compiled.

The group I previously identified as Fancy Bear was given access to request password privileges at the DNC. And it looks like the DNC provided them with it.

I’ll show why the Podesta email hack looks like a revenge hack.

The reason Republican opposition research files were stolen can be put into context now because we know who the hackers are and what motivates them.

At the same time this story developed, it overshadowed the Hillary Clinton email scandal. It is a matter of public record that Team Clinton provided the DNC hackers with passwords to State Department servers on at least 2 occasions, one wittingly and one not. I have already clearly shown the Fancy Bear hackers are Ukrainian Intelligence Operators.

This gives some credence to the Seth Rich leak (DNC leak story) as an act of patriotism. If the leak came through Seth Rich, it may have been because he saw foreign Intel operatives given this access from the presumed winners of the 2016 US presidential election. No political operative is going to argue with the presumed president-elect over foreign policy. The leaker may have been trying to do something about it. I’m curious what information Wikileaks might have.

Eliason’s analysis doesn’t support Robert Mueller’s indictments any more than the others do. All are essentially incompatible with the accusations (including ones which now have become also indictments) from Mueller. Moreover, as Patrick Lawrence noted, “Indictments are not evidence and do not need to contain evidence. That is supposed to come out at trial, which is very unlikely to ever happen. Nevertheless, the corporate media has treated the indictments as convictions.” Maybe that’s the biggest crime of all.

—————
Investigative historian Eric Zuesse is the author, most recently, of  They’re Not Even Close: The Democratic vs. Republican Economic Records, 1910-2010, and of  CHRIST’S VENTRILOQUISTS: The Event that Created Christianity.

Source

israel’s Online Shadow Operations

Israel’s Online Shadow Operations

Numerous well funded, organized projects by and for Israel work to flood social media with pro-Israel propaganda, while blocking facts Israel dislikes. The projects utilize Israeli soldiers, students, American teens and others, and range from infiltrating Wikipedia to influencing YouTube. Some operate out of Jewish Community Centers in the U.S.

Another project to do battle on the Internet was initiated in 2011 by the 300,000-strong National Union of Israeli Students (NUIS). The goal was “to deepen and expand hasbara [state propaganda] activities of students in the State of Israel.”

Under this program, Israeli students are paid $2,000 to work five hours per week to “lead the battle against hostile websites.”

An announcement for the program (translated here into English) noted that “many students in Israel master the Internet and are proficient at using the Internet and social networking and various sites and are required to write and express themselves in English.” Students can work from the comfort of their own homes, points out the announcement.

“Students work in four teams: Content, Wikipedia, Monitoring and New Media,” according to the program description. It details the responsibilities for each team:

The content team is responsible for creating original content in a news format.

The monitoring team is responsible for “monitoring efforts while reporting and removing anti-Semitic [sic] content from social networks in a variety of languages.” (The program conflates criticism of Israel with antisemitism; see below.)

The New Media team is responsible for social media channels, “including Facebook accounts in English, French and Portuguese, Twitter, YouTube channels, and so on.”

The Wikipedia team is “responsible for writing new entries and translating them into languages that operate in the program, updating the values of current and relevant information, tracking and preventing bias in the program’s areas of activity.”

This program sometimes claims it is working against antisemitism, but it conflates antisemitism with criticism of the state of Israel. This is in line with an Israel-backed initiative to legally define “antisemitism” to include discussing negative facts about Israel and its treatment of Palestinians.

 

The campaign to infiltrate Wikipedia

Several years ago, another project came to light that targeted Wikipedia. While manipulating Wikipedia entries doesn’t directly impact YouTube, it provides a window into some of these efforts to manipulate online content.

A 2008 exposé in the Electronic Intifada revealed: “A pro-Israel pressure group is orchestrating a secret, long-term campaign to infiltrate the popular online encyclopedia Wikipedia.”

While it is common and appropriate for individuals to edit Wikipedia entries to add factual information and remove inaccurate statements, this project was the antithesis of such editing. As EI, reported, its purpose was “to rewrite Palestinian history, pass off crude propaganda as fact, and take over Wikipedia administrative structures to ensure these changes go either undetected or unchallenged.”

Author Ali Abunimah reported that a source had provided EI with a series of emails from members and associates of the pro-Israel group CAMERA (Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America) that showed the group “was engaged in what one activist termed a ‘war’ on Wikipedia.”

CAMERA Senior Research Analyst Gilead Ini organized a project to infiltrate Wikipedia<img class=”size-full wp-image-238672″ src=”https://www.mintpressnews.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/SvS3uB_g.jpg” alt=”CAMERA Senior Research Analyst Gilead Ini organized a project to infiltrate Wikipedia” width=”512″ height=”512″ srcset=”https://www.mintpressnews.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/SvS3uB_g.jpg 512w, https://www.mintpressnews.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/SvS3uB_g-150×150.jpg 150w, https://www.mintpressnews.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/SvS3uB_g-300×300.jpg 300w” sizes=”(max-width: 512px) 100vw, 512px” />

CAMERA Senior Research Analyst Gilead Ini organized a project to infiltrate Wikipedia

CAMERA called for volunteers to secretly work on editing Wikipedia entries. It emphasized the importance of keeping the project secret. Volunteers were schooled in ways to elude detection. After they signed up as editors, they were to “avoid editing Israel-related articles for a short period of time.”

They were also told to “avoid, for obvious reasons, picking a username that marks you as pro-Israel, or that lets people know your real name.”

CAMERA also warned them: “Don’t forget to always log in… If you make changes while not logged in, Wikipedia will record your computer’s IP address.”

A Wikipedia editor known as Zeq helped in the effort, telling volunteers: “Edit articles at random, make friends not enemies—we will need them later on. This is a marathon not a sprint.” He emphasized the importance of secrecy: “You don’t want to be precived [sic] as a ‘CAMERA’ defender’ on Wikipedia that is for sure.”

Zeq recommended that they work with and learn from an independent, pro-Israel Wikipedia editor known as Jayjg, but directed them to keep the project secret even from him.

When this all came to light, Wikipedia took measures against such manipulation of its system and the CAMERA program may have ended.

If it did, others stepped into the breach. In 2010 two Israeli groups began offering a course in “Zionist editing” of Wikipedia entries. The aim was “to make sure that information in the online encyclopedia reflects the worldview of Zionist groups.” A course organizer explained that the use of the word “occupied” in Wikipedia entries “was just the kind of problem she hoped a new team of editors could help fix.”

Israel’s Ha’aretz newspaper reported: “The organizers’ aim was twofold: to affect Israeli public opinion by having people who share their ideological viewpoint take part in writing and editing for the Hebrew version, and to write in English so Israel’s image can be bolstered abroad.”

There was to be a prize for the “Best Zionist Editor”—the person who over the next four years incorporated the most “Zionist” changes in the encyclopedia. The winner would receive a trip in a hot-air balloon over Israel.

Watch | Millionaire Naftali Bennett, a right-wing minister close to the settler movement, describes the program:

https://www.youtube-nocookie.com/embed/wIYhE-hei2Y?rel=0&showinfo=0

The UK Guardian reports: “One Jerusalem-based Wikipedia editor, who doesn’t want to be named, said that publicising the initiative might not be such a good idea. ‘Going public in the past has had a bad effect,’ she says. ‘There is a war going on and unfortunately, the way to fight it has to be underground.’”

Again in 2013, there was evidence of pro-Israel tampering with Wikipedia. Israel’s Ha’aretz reported that a social-media employee of NGO Monitor edited articles about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in an allegedly biased manner. “Draiman concealed the facts that he was an employee of NGO Monitor, often described as a right-wing group, and that he was using a second username, which is forbidden under Wikipedia’s rules,” according to the paper.

Such actions have had an impact. A website critical of Wikipedia said in 2014 that there were “almost ten times as many articles about murdered Israeli children as there are articles about murdered Palestinian children,” even though at least 10 times more Palestinian children had been killed.

The website also pointed out: “While editors like Zeq (TCL) and CltFn (TCL) may get banned in the end, the articles they started remain.”

If YouTube reviewers and others use Wikipedia in their determination about whether content should be removed or not, these efforts to censor Wikipedia could adversely affect their decisions.

 

Social Media Missions for Israel

Title image from Forward article about the Act.IL campaign.<img class=”size-full wp-image-238673″ src=”https://www.mintpressnews.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/Screenshot-2018-03-07-10.27.43.png” alt=”Title image from Forward article about the Act.IL campaign.” width=”1024″ height=”422″ srcset=”https://www.mintpressnews.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/Screenshot-2018-03-07-10.27.43.png 1024w, https://www.mintpressnews.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/Screenshot-2018-03-07-10.27.43-300×124.png 300w, https://www.mintpressnews.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/Screenshot-2018-03-07-10.27.43-768×317.png 768w, https://www.mintpressnews.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/Screenshot-2018-03-07-10.27.43-800×330.png 800w” sizes=”(max-width: 1024px) 100vw, 1024px” />

Image from Forward article about the Act.IL campaign.

In 2017 yet another project to target Internet platforms was launched. Known as Act.il, the project uses a software application that “leverages the power of communities to support Israel through organized online activity.”

The software is a joint venture of three groups: Israel’s IDC University; the Israeli American Council, which works to “organize and activate” the half million Israeli-Americans who live in the U.S.; and another American group called the Maccabee Task Force, created to combat the international boycott of Israel, which it terms “an anti-Semitic movement.” Maccabee says it is “laser focused on one core mission—to ensure that those who seek to delegitimize Israel and demonize the Jewish people are confronted, combatted and defeated.”

Image from Maccabee end of year report.<img class=”size-full wp-image-238674″ src=”https://www.mintpressnews.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/MaccabeeGraphic.png” alt=”Image from Maccabee end of year report.” width=”728″ height=”381″ srcset=”https://www.mintpressnews.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/MaccabeeGraphic.png 728w, https://www.mintpressnews.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/MaccabeeGraphic-300×157.png 300w” sizes=”(max-width: 728px) 100vw, 728px” />

Image from Maccabee end of year report.

In addition, the project is supported by Israel’s Strategic Affairs Ministry and Israel’s intelligence community. Its CEO is an eight-year veteran of Israeli army intelligence.

Israel’s Jerusalem Post reports that Act.IL is “a wide-ranging grassroots campaign app that lets individuals combat BDS in the palm of their hand” or, as we will see, from public computers in the US.

“Act.IL is more than just an app,” the Post article explains. “It is a campaign that taps into the collective knowledge of IDC students who together speak 35 languages, hail from 86 countries and have connections to the pro-Israel community all over the world.”

The article claims: “A platform like Act.IL offers world Jewry an opportunity to fight for one thing the majority can rally behind: Israel.” (This ignores the fact that there are many Jewish individuals who oppose Israeli policies.)

Israel partisans around the world download the app, and then “in this virtual situation room of experts, they detect instances where Israel is being assailed online and they program the app to find missions that can be carried out with a push of a button.”

An organizer notes: “When you work together, with the same goals and values, you can be incredibly powerful in the social media landscape.”

https://www.youtube-nocookie.com/embed/2zbcEcSYcS8?rel=0&showinfo=0

Some missions ask users to report videos. Israeli government officials say that the Act.il app “is more effective than official government requests at getting those videos removed from online platforms.”

The project is led by former Israeli intelligence officers and has close ties to American casino billionaire Sheldon Adelson. Another funder is the Paul R. Singer Foundation, funded by the Republican hedge fund billionaire.

The Forward calls Act.IL a new entry into the “online propaganda war” that “has thousands of mostly U.S.-based volunteers who can be directed from Israel into a social media swarm.”

According to the Forward, “Its work so far offers a startling glimpse of how it could shape the online conversations about Israel without ever showing its hand.”

The Forward reports: “Act.il says that its app has 12,000 sign-ups so far, and 6,000 regular users. The users are located all over the world, though the majority of them appear to be in the United States. Users get ‘points’ for completed missions; top-ranked users complete five or six missions a day. Top users win prizes: a congratulatory letter from a government minister, or a doll of David Ben-Gurion, Israel’s founding prime minister.”

<img class=”wp-image-9560 size-full” src=”https://i2.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/Act.IL-training-img.png?resize=498%2C347&ssl=1″ sizes=”(max-width: 498px) 100vw, 498px” srcset=”https://i2.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/Act.IL-training-img.png?w=498&ssl=1 498w, https://i2.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/Act.IL-training-img.png?resize=300%2C209&ssl=1 300w” alt=”Photo of group that participated in Act.IL training” width=”498″ height=”347″ data-attachment-id=”9560″ data-permalink=”https://israelpalestinenews.org/israel-partisans-work-censor-internet/act-il-training-img/” data-orig-file=”https://i2.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/Act.IL-training-img.png?fit=498%2C347&ssl=1″ data-orig-size=”498,347″ data-comments-opened=”0″ data-image-meta=”{"aperture":"0","credit":"","camera":"","caption":"","created_timestamp":"0","copyright":"","focal_length":"0","iso":"0","shutter_speed":"0","title":"","orientation":"0"}” data-image-title=”Act.IL training-img” data-image-description=”” data-medium-file=”https://i2.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/Act.IL-training-img.png?fit=300%2C209&ssl=1″ data-large-file=”https://i2.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/Act.IL-training-img.png?fit=498%2C347&ssl=1″ />

Act.IL’s CEO, a veteran Israeli army intelligence officer, said the Israeli military and its domestic intelligence service “‘request’ Act.il’s help in getting services like Facebook to remove specific videos that call for violence against Jews or Israelis.” This according to the Forward report.

The officer later tried to walk back his statement, “saying that the Shin Bet [intelligence service] and the army don’t request help on specific videos but are in regular informal contact with Act.il. He said that Act.il’s staff is largely made up of former Israeli intelligence officers.

 

Teens in American JCCs carry out missions assigned from Israel

The project recruits Jewish teens and adults and sometimes operates out of local Jewish community centers, the Forward says. The paper describes one example:
<img class=”size-full wp-image-238677″ src=”https://www.mintpressnews.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/IAC.NJ-MediaRoom.jpg” alt=”New Jersey “Media Room,” a project of IAC New Jersey in partnership with Act.IL.” width=”460″ height=”330″ srcset=”https://www.mintpressnews.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/IAC.NJ-MediaRoom.jpg 460w, https://www.mintpressnews.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/IAC.NJ-MediaRoom-300×215.jpg 300w” sizes=”(max-width: 460px) 100vw, 460px” />

“The dozen or so Israelis sitting around a conference table at a Jewish community center in Tenafly, New Jersey, on a recent Wednesday night didn’t look like the leading edge of a new Israeli government-linked crowdsourced online propaganda campaign.

“Tapping on laptops, the group of high school students and adult mentors completed social media ‘missions’ assigned out of a headquarters in Herzliya, Israel.”

In addition to the Tenafly “media room” another operates in Boston in cooperation with the Combined Jewish Philanthropies of Greater Boston. There are also regular Act.il advocacy-training sessions at The Frisch School, a Jewish day school in Paramas, New Jersey. Other media rooms are reportedly in the works, with one in Manhattan, hosted by The Paul R. Singer Foundation, scheduled to open soon.

The Forward reports: “In November, the Boston media room created a mission for the app that asked users to email a Boston-area church to complain about a screening there of a documentary that is critical of Israel. The proposed text of the email likens the screening of the film to the white supremacist riot in Charlottesville, Virginia, and calls the film’s narrator, Pink Floyd frontman Roger Waters, a ‘well-known anti-Semite.’”

 Boston Media Room <img class=”wp-image-9588 size-full” src=”https://i2.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/BostonMediaRoom.jpg?resize=728%2C485&ssl=1″ sizes=”(max-width: 728px) 100vw, 728px” srcset=”https://i2.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/BostonMediaRoom.jpg?w=762&ssl=1 762w, https://i2.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/BostonMediaRoom.jpg?resize=300%2C200&ssl=1 300w, https://i2.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/BostonMediaRoom.jpg?resize=272%2C182&ssl=1 272w” alt=” Boston Media Room ” width=”728″ height=”485″ data-attachment-id=”9588″ data-permalink=”https://israelpalestinenews.org/israel-partisans-work-censor-internet/bostonmediaroom/” data-orig-file=”https://i2.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/BostonMediaRoom.jpg?fit=762%2C508&ssl=1″ data-orig-size=”762,508″ data-comments-opened=”0″ data-image-meta=”{"aperture":"0","credit":"","camera":"","caption":"","created_timestamp":"0","copyright":"","focal_length":"0","iso":"0","shutter_speed":"0","title":"","orientation":"0"}” data-image-title=”BostonMediaRoom” data-image-description=”” data-medium-file=”https://i2.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/BostonMediaRoom.jpg?fit=300%2C200&ssl=1″ data-large-file=”https://i2.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/BostonMediaRoom.jpg?fit=728%2C485&ssl=1″ />

Photo of Boston Media Room published by Combined Jewish Philanthropies of Greater Boston, which states: “Media Room Ambassadors are students and adult mentors who are trained with the knowledge, skills, and tools to positively influence public discourse by developing pro-Israel social media campaigns.”

According to the Forward, Act.il also produces “pro-Israel web content that carries no logo. It distributes that content to other pro-Israel groups, including the Adelson-funded Jewish fraternity Alpha Epsilon Pi and The Israel Project, which push them out on their own social media feeds.”The Forward predicts: “Initiatives in cyberspace seem likely to increase.”

<img class=”wp-image-9589 size-large” src=”https://i1.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/Screenshot-2018-03-08-06.28.15.png?resize=728%2C410&ssl=1″ sizes=”(max-width: 728px) 100vw, 728px” srcset=”https://i1.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/Screenshot-2018-03-08-06.28.15.png?resize=1024%2C576&ssl=1 1024w, https://i1.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/Screenshot-2018-03-08-06.28.15.png?resize=300%2C169&ssl=1 300w, https://i1.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/Screenshot-2018-03-08-06.28.15.png?resize=768%2C432&ssl=1 768w, https://i1.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/Screenshot-2018-03-08-06.28.15.png?resize=728%2C410&ssl=1 728w, https://i1.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/Screenshot-2018-03-08-06.28.15.png?resize=344%2C193&ssl=1 344w, https://i1.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/Screenshot-2018-03-08-06.28.15.png?resize=400%2C225&ssl=1 400w, https://i1.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/Screenshot-2018-03-08-06.28.15.png?resize=180%2C100&ssl=1 180w, https://i1.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/Screenshot-2018-03-08-06.28.15.png?w=1439&ssl=1 1439w” alt=”” width=”728″ height=”410″ data-attachment-id=”9589″ data-permalink=”https://israelpalestinenews.org/israel-partisans-work-censor-internet/screenshot-2018-03-08-06-28-15/” data-orig-file=”https://i1.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/Screenshot-2018-03-08-06.28.15.png?fit=1439%2C810&ssl=1″ data-orig-size=”1439,810″ data-comments-opened=”0″ data-image-meta=”{"aperture":"0","credit":"","camera":"","caption":"","created_timestamp":"0","copyright":"","focal_length":"0","iso":"0","shutter_speed":"0","title":"","orientation":"0"}” data-image-title=”Screenshot 2018-03-08 06.28.15″ data-image-description=”” data-medium-file=”https://i1.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/Screenshot-2018-03-08-06.28.15.png?fit=300%2C169&ssl=1″ data-large-file=”https://i1.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/Screenshot-2018-03-08-06.28.15.png?fit=728%2C410&ssl=1″ />

Screenshot from video promoting the project, posted on the Combined Jewish Philanthropies of Greater Boston website.

Israeli media report that the Israeli military “has begun scouring Jewish communities abroad for young computer prodigies” to recruit for its ranks.

An Israeli official described the process: “Our first order of business is to search Jewish communities abroad for teens who could qualify, Our representatives will then travel to the communities and begin the screening process there.”

 

Israeli Government Ministry backs secret online campaigns

<img class=”wp-image-9566 size-full” src=”https://i0.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/Sima-Vaknin-Gil.jpeg?resize=700%2C467&ssl=1″ sizes=”(max-width: 700px) 100vw, 700px” srcset=”https://i0.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/Sima-Vaknin-Gil.jpeg?w=700&ssl=1 700w, https://i0.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/Sima-Vaknin-Gil.jpeg?resize=300%2C200&ssl=1 300w, https://i0.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/Sima-Vaknin-Gil.jpeg?resize=272%2C182&ssl=1 272w” alt=”” width=”700″ height=”467″ data-attachment-id=”9566″ data-permalink=”https://israelpalestinenews.org/israel-partisans-work-censor-internet/sima-vaknin-gil/” data-orig-file=”https://i0.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/Sima-Vaknin-Gil.jpeg?fit=700%2C467&ssl=1″ data-orig-size=”700,467″ data-comments-opened=”0″ data-image-meta=”{"aperture":"0","credit":"","camera":"","caption":"","created_timestamp":"0","copyright":"","focal_length":"0","iso":"0","shutter_speed":"0","title":"","orientation":"0"}” data-image-title=”Sima Vaknin-Gil” data-image-description=”” data-medium-file=”https://i0.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/Sima-Vaknin-Gil.jpeg?fit=300%2C200&ssl=1″ data-large-file=”https://i0.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/Sima-Vaknin-Gil.jpeg?fit=700%2C467&ssl=1″ />

General Sima Vaknin-Gil told Israeli tech developers to “flood the Internet” with pro-Israel propaganda. As Israel’s Chief Censor, she said: ” “We censor information that is critical to our enemies, who have no capabilities like us, do not have a Jewish brain, and therefore our enemy relies to a large extent on open information…”

Israel’s Strategic Affairs Ministry, which is behind this and similar projects, has mobilized substantial resources for online activities.Israel’s Ynet news reports that the Ministry’s director “sees it as a war for all intents and purposes. ‘The delegitimization against the State of Israel can be curbed and contained through public diplomacy and soft tools,’ she says. ‘In order to win, however, we must use tricks and craftiness.’”

The director, General Sima Vaknin-Gil, told a forum of Israeli tech developers at a forum: “I want to create a community of fighters.” The objective is to “curb the activities of anti-Israel activists,” and “flood the Internet” with pro-Israel content.

<img class=”wp-image-238681″ src=”https://www.mintpressnews.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/ChampionTower-e1520525181254.jpg” alt=”” width=”457″ height=”609″ srcset=”https://www.mintpressnews.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/ChampionTower-e1520525181254.jpg 768w, https://www.mintpressnews.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/ChampionTower-e1520525181254-225×300.jpg 225w” sizes=”(max-width: 457px) 100vw, 457px” />

The 29th floor of Tel Aviv’s Champion Tower is the nerve center of a 24-7 ‘war’ in which Israeli agents working behind the scenes advance U.S. legislation, torpedo events, organize counter-protests, & close bank accounts.. The Director says: ‘In order to win we must use tricks and craftiness.’

An Israeli report in December stated that the ministry has acquired a budget of roughly $70 million to “stand at the forefront of the battle against delegitimization, adopting methods from the fields of intelligence and technology. There is a reason why ministry officials define it as ‘a war on consciousness terrorism.’” [‘Delegitimization’ is a common Israeli term for criticism of Israel. See here for a discussion of the term.]

Ha’aretz article reports: “The Strategic Affairs Ministry’s leaders see themselves as the heads of a commando unit, gathering and disseminating information about ‘supporters of the delegitimization of Israel’—and they prefer their actions be kept secret.”

The article reports that the Ministry includes a job role entitled “Senior official—new-media realm,” responsible for surveillance and activities “in the digital realm.”

This individual head is responsible for analyzing social media and formulating a social media campaign against sites and activists who are deemed a threat to Israel.

Among the job’s responsibilities are:

Analysis of the world of social media, in terms of content, technology and network structure, emphasizing centers of gravity and focuses of influence, methods, messages, organizations, sites and key activists, studying their characteristics, areas, realms and key patterns of activities of the rival campaign and formulating a strategy for an awareness campaign against them in this realm and managing crises on social media. That is, surveilling of activities mainly in the digital arena.”

Officials at the ministry are charged with “construction and promotion of creative and suitable programs for new media.”

The unit works to keep its activities secret from the public. For example, a program to train young Israelis for activities on social media was exempted from publishing a public bid for funding. Similarly, the ministry’s special unit against delegitimization, “Hama’aracha” (The Battle), is excluded from Israel’s Freedom of Information Law.

Its activities reportedly include a “24/7 operations room monitoring all the delegitimization activities against Israel: Protests, conferences, publications calling for an anti-Israel boycott and international bodies’ boycott initiatives. The operations room will transfer the information to the relevant people to provide a proper response to these activities, whether through a counter-protest or through moves to thwart the initiative behind the scenes.”

Other programs include a 22-million-shekel project to work among labor unions and professional associations abroad “to root out the ability of BDS entities to influence the unions,” and a 16-million-shekel program focused on student activities throughout the world.

 

Israel’s UNIT 8200

<img class=”wp-image-9592 size-full” src=”https://i1.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/Unit8200.jpg?resize=678%2C326&ssl=1″ sizes=”(max-width: 678px) 100vw, 678px” srcset=”https://i1.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/Unit8200.jpg?w=678&ssl=1 678w, https://i1.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/Unit8200.jpg?resize=300%2C144&ssl=1 300w” alt=”” width=”678″ height=”326″ data-attachment-id=”9592″ data-permalink=”https://israelpalestinenews.org/israel-partisans-work-censor-internet/unit8200/” data-orig-file=”https://i1.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/Unit8200.jpg?fit=678%2C326&ssl=1″ data-orig-size=”678,326″ data-comments-opened=”0″ data-image-meta=”{"aperture":"0","credit":"","camera":"","caption":"","created_timestamp":"0","copyright":"","focal_length":"0","iso":"0","shutter_speed":"0","title":"","orientation":"0"}” data-image-title=”Unit8200″ data-image-description=”” data-medium-file=”https://i1.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/Unit8200.jpg?fit=300%2C144&ssl=1″ data-large-file=”https://i1.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/Unit8200.jpg?fit=678%2C326&ssl=1″ />

Photo from article about Unit 8200 on Britain Israel Communications and Research Centre website.

Another Israeli entity that plays a role in covert Internet activity is the Israeli military’s legendary high-tech spy branch, Unit 8200. This unit is composed of thousands of “cyber warriors” primarily 18 to 21 years of age; some even younger. A number of its graduates have gone on to top positions at tech companies operating in the U.S., such as Check Point Software (where the spouse of the Jewish Voice for Peace head is employed as a solutions architect).

In 2015 Israel’s Foreign Ministry announced plans “to establish a special command to combat anti-Israel incitement on social media.” The command would operate under the foreign ministry’s hasbara [propaganda] department and would especially recruit from graduates of Unit 8200.

An article in the Jewish Press about the new command reports that Unit 8200 “has developed a great reputation for effectiveness in intelligence gathering, including operating a massive global spy network. Several alumni of 8200 have gone on to establish leading Israeli IT companies, including Check Point, ICQ, Palo Alto Networks, NICE, AudioCodes, Gilat, Leadspace, EZchip, Onavo, Singular and CyberArk.”

<img class=”wp-image-9439 size-large” src=”https://i1.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/Check_point_hq_Tel-Aviv.jpg?resize=728%2C410&ssl=1″ sizes=”(max-width: 728px) 100vw, 728px” srcset=”https://i1.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/Check_point_hq_Tel-Aviv.jpg?resize=1024%2C576&ssl=1 1024w, https://i1.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/Check_point_hq_Tel-Aviv.jpg?resize=300%2C169&ssl=1 300w, https://i1.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/Check_point_hq_Tel-Aviv.jpg?resize=768%2C432&ssl=1 768w, https://i1.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/Check_point_hq_Tel-Aviv.jpg?resize=728%2C410&ssl=1 728w, https://i1.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/Check_point_hq_Tel-Aviv.jpg?resize=344%2C193&ssl=1 344w, https://i1.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/Check_point_hq_Tel-Aviv.jpg?resize=400%2C225&ssl=1 400w, https://i1.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/Check_point_hq_Tel-Aviv.jpg?resize=180%2C100&ssl=1 180w, https://i1.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/Check_point_hq_Tel-Aviv.jpg?w=1280&ssl=1 1280w” alt=”” width=”728″ height=”410″ data-attachment-id=”9439″ data-permalink=”https://israelpalestinenews.org/israel-partisans-work-censor-internet/check_point_hq_tel-aviv/” data-orig-file=”https://i1.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/Check_point_hq_Tel-Aviv.jpg?fit=1280%2C720&ssl=1″ data-orig-size=”1280,720″ data-comments-opened=”0″ data-image-meta=”{"aperture":"0","credit":"","camera":"","caption":"","created_timestamp":"0","copyright":"","focal_length":"0","iso":"0","shutter_speed":"0","title":"","orientation":"0"}” data-image-title=”Check_point_hq_Tel Aviv” data-image-description=”” data-medium-file=”https://i1.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/Check_point_hq_Tel-Aviv.jpg?fit=300%2C169&ssl=1″ data-large-file=”https://i1.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/Check_point_hq_Tel-Aviv.jpg?fit=728%2C410&ssl=1″ />

Check Point Software headquarters in Tel Aviv. Founded by a former Unit 8200 member, it also has offices throughout the U.S. Israeli tech companies sometimes assist in online spying efforts.

Numerous Israeli tech companies, many of them headed by former military intelligence officers, assist in these online spying efforts, sometimes receiving Israeli government funding “for digital initiatives aimed at gathering intelligence on activist groups and countering their efforts.”

According to the ministry’s statement, among the Command’s activities is finding videos with inflammatory content and issuing complaints to the relevant websites.”

To be clear, this is an occupying military working covertly to achieve censorship of reporting on its atrocities.

 

YouTube & Google officials meet with Israeli Minister

<img class=”wp-image-9436 size-large” src=”https://i2.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/Screenshot-2018-02-27-15.46.20.png?resize=728%2C374&ssl=1″ sizes=”(max-width: 728px) 100vw, 728px” srcset=”https://i2.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/Screenshot-2018-02-27-15.46.20.png?resize=1024%2C526&ssl=1 1024w, https://i2.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/Screenshot-2018-02-27-15.46.20.png?resize=300%2C154&ssl=1 300w, https://i2.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/Screenshot-2018-02-27-15.46.20.png?resize=768%2C394&ssl=1 768w, https://i2.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/Screenshot-2018-02-27-15.46.20.png?w=1114&ssl=1 1114w” alt=”” width=”728″ height=”373″ data-attachment-id=”9436″ data-permalink=”https://israelpalestinenews.org/israel-partisans-work-censor-internet/screenshot-2018-02-27-15-46-20/” data-orig-file=”https://i2.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/Screenshot-2018-02-27-15.46.20.png?fit=1114%2C572&ssl=1″ data-orig-size=”1114,572″ data-comments-opened=”0″ data-image-meta=”{"aperture":"0","credit":"","camera":"","caption":"","created_timestamp":"0","copyright":"","focal_length":"0","iso":"0","shutter_speed":"0","title":"","orientation":"0"}” data-image-title=”Screenshot 2018-02-27 15.46.20″ data-image-description=”” data-medium-file=”https://i2.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/Screenshot-2018-02-27-15.46.20.png?fit=300%2C154&ssl=1″ data-large-file=”https://i2.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/Screenshot-2018-02-27-15.46.20.png?fit=728%2C374&ssl=1″ />

YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki speaking to the Israel Collaboration Network’s Israeli Women in Tech Group on August 25, 2016.

Major Internet companies have reportedly been cooperating in this effort.

In 2015 Israel’s Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely announced that she had visited Silicon Valley and met with YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki and Google’s Director of Public Policy (it is unclear whether this was was Jennifer Oztzistzki or Juniper Downs; Hotovely’s announcement referred to “Jennifer Downs”).

“At the end of the meeting,” Israeli media reported, “it was agreed that Google would strengthen bilateral relations with the Foreign Ministry and build a collaborative work apparatus.”

Another Israeli news report about the meeting states: “…it was agreed that the companies would strengthen ties with the Foreign Ministry and build a regular mechanism of control to prevent the distribution of those incendiary materials on the network.”

Google, which owns YouTube, denied the Foreign Ministry’s report. The Ministry accordingly “clarified” its statement somewhat, but continued to say that Israeli officials would be in “regular contact with Google’s employees in Israel who deal with the problematic materials.”

Such officials often have close ties to Israel. For example, Facebook’s Head of Policy in Israel,Jordana Cutler, had previously been employed for many years by the Israeli government. (More about Facebook can be found here.)

<img class=”wp-image-9443 size-full” src=”https://i1.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/Screenshot-2018-02-28-09.57.43.png?resize=543%2C716&ssl=1″ sizes=”(max-width: 543px) 100vw, 543px” srcset=”https://i1.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/Screenshot-2018-02-28-09.57.43.png?w=543&ssl=1 543w, https://i1.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/Screenshot-2018-02-28-09.57.43.png?resize=228%2C300&ssl=1 228w” alt=”” width=”543″ height=”716″ data-attachment-id=”9443″ data-permalink=”https://israelpalestinenews.org/israel-partisans-work-censor-internet/screenshot-2018-02-28-09-57-43/” data-orig-file=”https://i1.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/Screenshot-2018-02-28-09.57.43.png?fit=543%2C716&ssl=1″ data-orig-size=”543,716″ data-comments-opened=”0″ data-image-meta=”{"aperture":"0","credit":"","camera":"","caption":"","created_timestamp":"0","copyright":"","focal_length":"0","iso":"0","shutter_speed":"0","title":"","orientation":"0"}” data-image-title=”Screenshot 2018-02-28 09.57.43″ data-image-description=”” data-medium-file=”https://i1.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/Screenshot-2018-02-28-09.57.43.png?fit=228%2C300&ssl=1″ data-large-file=”https://i1.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/Screenshot-2018-02-28-09.57.43.png?fit=543%2C716&ssl=1″ />

The Linkedin page for Facebook’s Jordana Cutler

The meetings seem to have had a significant effect.

In 2016 Fortune magazine reported: “Facebook, Google, and YouTube are complying with up to 95% of Israeli requests to delete content that the government says incites Palestinian violence, Israel’s Justice Minister said on Monday.”

More recently, the Israeli Ministry of Justice said that its cyber unit handled 2,241 cases of online content and succeeded in getting 70 percent of it removed.

According to a 2017 report, Google, in its capacity as the operator of Youtube, announced that it was updating the steps it was already taking on this score.

Among other things, Google said it would increase the number of members of the “Trusted Flagger program,” which enables certain organizations and government agencies to report content. It also said it would “increase support for NGOs and organizations working to present a ‘corrective voice.’”

Given the record of infiltration and orchestrated activities described above—many financed by a combination of certain influential billionaires and the Israeli government itself—it’s hard to imagine that Israeli organizations and partisans are not thoroughly embedded in this program. In fact, one of the NGOs already working with YouTube as a “trusted flagger” is the Anti-Defamation League, whose mission includes ‘standing up for Israel.’

<img class=”wp-image-9567 size-full” src=”https://i2.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/ADLIsrael.jpg?resize=480%2C280&ssl=1″ sizes=”(max-width: 480px) 100vw, 480px” srcset=”https://i2.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/ADLIsrael.jpg?w=480&ssl=1 480w, https://i2.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/ADLIsrael.jpg?resize=300%2C175&ssl=1 300w” alt=”” width=”480″ height=”280″ data-attachment-id=”9567″ data-permalink=”https://israelpalestinenews.org/israel-partisans-work-censor-internet/adlisrael/” data-orig-file=”https://i2.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/ADLIsrael.jpg?fit=480%2C280&ssl=1″ data-orig-size=”480,280″ data-comments-opened=”0″ data-image-meta=”{"aperture":"6.3","credit":"","camera":"Canon EOS 5D Mark III","caption":"","created_timestamp":"1496576482","copyright":"","focal_length":"33","iso":"500","shutter_speed":"0.008","title":"","orientation":"0"}” data-image-title=”ADLIsrael” data-image-description=”” data-medium-file=”https://i2.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/ADLIsrael.jpg?fit=300%2C175&ssl=1″ data-large-file=”https://i2.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/ADLIsrael.jpg?fit=480%2C280&ssl=1″ />

Anti-Defamation League celebrates Israel at 2017 New York City parade.

A leaked secret January 2017 ADL working paper detailed how to counter the pro-Palestine movement. Among its many strategies were some focused on the importance of efforts in cyber space.

The paper was produced in collaboration with the Reut Institute, an Israeli think tank, and included an endorsement by Sima Vaknin-Gil, who stated that “the correlation between the Ministry’s mode of operation and what comes out of this document is very high, and has already proven effective… ”

<img class=”m_-5396019248760744276gmail- m_-5396019248760744276gmail-wp-image-9622 CToWUd a6T alignleft” tabindex=”0″ src=”https://ci6.googleusercontent.com/proxy/voXh3P22k7oVJYy4KRbTJzJbjb8jfv9rtFigjlkRSNBkIEjbYdFfrOwChK9gx1znHV36_osAGkPwblhTZhV0LSI3jENSwalvolgT9CWfRtJCdSAfj-pzzskvPEM05cTXCcC5jCskO-fAHBDR9mTscfibWWq3FGIGIJMu-IYOInr7d8sGSk2XEidwaooYws5lM2UxGg=s0-d-e1-ft#https://i2.wp.com/israelpalestinenews.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/Screenshot-2018-03-09-08.23.25.png?resize=328%2C425&ssl=1″ alt=”” width=”328″ height=”426″ />

The document’s executive summary noted: “Cyberspace, broadly defined, stands out as a crucially important arena (for monitoring and counter and pro-active strategies) which requires more resources and attention due to its current influence, rapid growth and growing complexity.”

The paper called for “a mix of policy advocacy and industry engagement with corporations such as Google, Facebook, and Twitter in a manner consistent with the ADL Center for Technology and Society and its Anti-Cyberhate Working Group.”

The paper also recommended: “‘Bottom-up efforts’ of crowd-sourcing to enhance the adaptive capacity of the pro-Israel network.”

At the same time, it urged:

Strengthening pro-Israel organizations that mobilize and coordinate a network of ‘nodes’ e.g. Jewish Community Public Affairs (JCPA) and its network of Jewish Community Relations Council (JCRCs) in the USA; Hillel, which is present in nearly five hundred locations in the U.S. and globally; the Israel Action Network (IAN) that reaches nearly 160 federations in the U.S.; or the Jewish Congress (WJC) that represents dozens of Jewish communities around the world.”

The detailed, 32-page document reported that in recent years “a massive investment of resources and talent” had been directed against the pro-Palestine movement. One of the results, the paper said, was to create a “world-wide pro-Israel network.” It was this network that the report wished to mobilize. One of the paper’s concerns was that since Israel’s 2014  attack on Gaza “a growing number of Jews have become more critical of Israel.”

The document recommended a degree of stealth, noting: “high-visibility response by the pro-Israel side can be counterproductive.”

Read the ADL’s 2017 report The Assault on Israel’s Legitimacy

 

What this means

Nevertheless, despite all these forces arrayed against information about Palestine reaching the American public, our channel is back up on YouTube. In fact, we’ve just uploaded a new video:

https://www.youtube-nocookie.com/embed/k4JyxJ2SPYY?rel=0&showinfo=0

This one is about the death of a nine-year-old boy. [Perhaps the Israeli government would consider this incitement to Palestinians to rebel against occupation; we see it as incitement to the world in general, and Americans in particular, to care.]

In other words, Israel’s efforts at censorship don’t always succeed.

But sometimes they do, and other YouTube users have not always been so fortunate. For example, YouTube has terminated several Palestinian news organizations.

One was the al-Quds network, which, according to a report in Middle East Eye, “relies on young reporters and volunteers using phones and other digital devices to cover local news across the Palestinian territories.” They would often report Israeli soldiers committing various human rights violations.

Its YouTube channel was terminated in 2011, and its editor says they had to “to create a new channel from scratch.” By 2017 its new channel had gained almost 10 million views before it was suddenly suspended without warning again last October. It now, however, appears to have a YouTube channel in operation.

According to the MEE report, YouTube also suspended the Filisten al-Youm TV channel last August, and in 2013, apparently following complaints by the Anti-Defamation League, YouTube closed down Iran’s PressTV channel. (A Press TV YouTube channel now also appears to be available again.)

Palestinian social media users risk even greater consequences.

The Israeli government has arrested Palestinians for videos, poems, and other posts it dislikes. A 2016 report estimated that “more than 150 arrests took place between October and February 2016 based on Facebook posts expressing opinions on the uprising. A recent video posted on social media led to the imprisonment of a 16 year old girl, her mother and cousin.

In addition, Palestinian access to social media is somewhat controlled by Israel. As a Huffington Post article reports, ”Palestinians’ digital rights and access to the Internet are compromised in very basic ways, because Israel controls the infrastructure and services of Palestinian telecommunication companies in the West Bank.”

While the situation has greatly improved in recent years – the Israeli government finally announced in 2016 that it would allow Palestinians in the West Bank to access 3G wireless networks, making this one of the last regions in the world with such access after years of Israeli restrictions – it is important to remember the enormous power Israel wields over this largely captive population.

While Israel is able to organize entire campaigns to filter and flood social media, its immense control over Palestinians impedes their access to the same media.

Given these facts, it is extremely important for people to search out information for themselves, go directly to our websites and others, subscribe to diverse email lists, and not rely on social media for information. [Please subscribe to our news posts here.]

Facebook, YouTube, Twitter and others are private companies. In the end, they have the power to censor information, and they periodically do so. For a few days, we felt acutely what that was like. If Facebook had joined the ban, as has happened with others, we would have been even more cut off from what is essentially today’s “public square.”

The Internet and social media give us far more access to information and tools for communication and activism than ever before, but they, too, can be controlled—and they are.

It is up to us, as always, to overcome.

Top Photo | An Israeli soldier looks at the Facebook page of the IDF, at the IDF spokesperson’s office in Jerusalem, in the Occupied Territories. (AP/Sebastian Scheiner)

Alison Weir is an author and activist.  Her book, Against Our Better Judgment: The Hidden History of How the U.S. Was Used to Create Israel is an Amazon best-seller and has been called a “must-read for all Americans.” Learn more about it here.

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