Wednesday, November 04, 2015

04-Nov-15: Facts, lies and viral video clips

Screenshot from video embedded in the Facebook page of
the Hamas media agency, Shehab
Nearly 400,000 people have turned a video clip of a violent clash in Jerusalem viral over the past two days (hat-tip to Elder of Ziyon for focusing on this). 

Posted on the Facebook page of Shehab News Agency (taken down by Facebook in February 2015, but plainly back in business now), its content is summed up in this caption
Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) brutally attack unarmed Palestinian young man for his refusal to take off his trousers
This makes sense. 

In other words, for people who believe the Islamist terrorists of Hamas captured an Israeli "spy dolphin" in the sea off Gaza this past summer, and found that it had been "stripped of its will" and turned into "a murderer" by Israel's security services [BBC], it makes sense.

It makes sense in the same way the Egyptian "discovery" [Wikipedia] that Israel's Mossad spy agency had sent a killer shark to attack tourists in the waters off the Sinai Peninsula makes sense.

And in the same way that Israel weaponized a flying vulture [ABC].

Shehab, based in Gaza, is an affiliate of Hamas - a deeply-cultist religion-driven regime that shoots its foes in public streets in broad daylight and drags their bodies behind motor cycles; throws members of non-Islamist Palestinian Arab groups off the rooftops of tall buildings to their deaths; sends agents equipped with exploding guitar cases into pizzerias; and on and on - so that, on any reasonable view, the charges it makes about Israeli deeds ought to be viewed with a degree of skepticism.

Nonetheless, it keeps attracting viewers and fans by the millions, and the evidence suggests those fans lap up the conspiracy theories, the hate-messages and the anti-Israel war-crime allegations with relish. In the face of such massive don't-confuse-my-deep-prejudice-with-facts, what's a person to do? Not much other than try to show how unfactual Shehab's "news" is.

First, an admission.

The man in the video certainly was involved in a brutal attack on Monday as Hamas alleges. Only he was the brute doing the attacking. As we posted here two days ago ["02-Nov-15: The violence continues"]: 
Meanwhile in Jerusalem, yet another reminder of the wanton ordinariness of the violence on the minds of an untold number of our neighbours. An Israeli woman in her forties, guiding a group of visitors in the vicinity of the Old City's Jaffa Gate, was assaulted this morning by a Palestinian Arab attacker. Like several other perpetrators of acts of terror in and around the capital, this one was a resident of the Jabel Mukaber neighborhood. He fled on foot after smashing her over the head with a bottle, and police and Border Guard personnel gave chase, catching up with him at Kikar Zahal (IDF Square, next to Jerusalem's City Hall). The assailant is 22 years old. His victim suffered light injuries and was taken by Magen David Adom (MDA) ambulance for emergency treatment of head injuries at Hadassah Ein Kerem Hospital. Here's an extract from a security video clip that captured yet another resistance hero defending (excuse the deep cynicism) the "Al Aqsa mosque compound"...
Same "Palestinian young man" a few minutes earlier,
not so unarmed [click to see security cam video]
The video showing the cowardly attack embedded in that post is here. His name is Omar Alfrouk Abidaya. Like so many of the thugs engaging in recent acts of extreme malice, he is - as we noted above - a resident of the Jerusalem neighbourhood of Jabel Mukaber.

The social media, chiefly Twitter and Facebook, provide potent platforms for disseminating libelous "news" coverage like the video clip of an innocent, unfortunate Palestinian Arab getting abused because of not wanting his trousers to be pulled down. And hundreds of thousands of minds all over the world get instantly polluted and befuddled by this sort of counter-factual propaganda, emerging with a deeper understanding of why men, women and teenage children would grab a kitchen knife and go get themselves some revenge.

A shame that the lethal passions on show here aren't matched by an equally fierce desire to learn the facts behind the claims - the often-complicated realities behind the viral videos. Keep in mind that results like these are precisely what propagandists like Shehab/Hamas exist to achieve.

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