In a shocking double standard that will leave you reeling, Facebook has apparently agreed to let the Israeli Minister–who explicitly calls for the genocide of Palestine on Facebook–to dictate to Facebook which Palestinian pages were “controversial” and had to be removed.
In a controversial move, the Israeli government and Facebook reportedly agreed to work together to determine how to tackle incitement on social media, aimed primarily at Palestinians.
Not long after Facebook’s agreement, several Palestinian pages with millions of readers found themselves closed and administrators locked out, in a move believed to be directly connected to the agreement between Facebook and the Israeli government.
By last Friday, however, Palestinian journalists and activists said they had had enough and announced a temporary boycott of Facebook, protesting what they call the company’s complicity in Israeli censorship and putting up an upside down Facebook sign as their profile photo.
Israeli Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked is the main figure behind the controversy. Earlier this month, she boasted that the social network had been overwhelmingly happy to comply with Israeli demands.
“Over the past four months, Israel submitted 158 requests to Facebook” and Facebook had accepted 95 percent of those cases, said Shaked, who is best known outside Israel for herinfamous comments against a Palestinian state. It is believed that over the years, Facebook and Twitter have deleted thousands of posts, pages and accounts in response to demands from the Israeli ministry of justice.
Facebook working with Israel's Justice Minister, Ayelet Shaked, who is infamous for posting a call to kill Palestinian children on..Facebook
— Mohammad Alsaafin (@malsaafin) September 24, 2016
Facebook claims the pages were removed in error and has restored them, however the agreement with the Israeli government remains, leaving the possibility that even peaceful calls for autonomy could be censored* as they are characterized as destabilizing.
I am baffled as to how anyone can continue to support Israeli occupation. They’re worse than American cops. They’ve been caught on film framing victims. I’ve heard the word “apartheid” used and the more evidence comes out of Israel the increasingly apparent that is the case. It is not anti-Semitic to criticize the actions of a government, and certainly not anti-Semitic to even post photographs or videos catching Israeli troops acting in bad faith.
I mean, “Facebook sells out” is hardly newsworthy at this point, seriously. Genocidal minister = free speech. Calls for autonomy = terrorists? We should all recognise the potential for our governments to strike such similar agreements with Facebook–if they don’t have them already.
Don’t let the calls for Palestinian peace and independence be conflated with terrorism.
*Because the “recommendations” for removal are from the Israeli government, it is in fact censorship.