The Israeli Information Warfare On The People Of Palestine

Al-Khaleej al-Jadid, UAE, September 18

Like many of its counterparts in the West, Israel has also amped up its use of information warfare against its enemies in recent years. The Israeli government now allocates considerable resources, both human and financial, to the spreading of misinformation and propaganda materials across Palestinian social media platforms, television, and radio channels. These techniques are not new. The US Army already began using information warfare during its war in Afghanistan and Iraq. This consisted of the use of leaflets, billboards, and public broadcasts to send messages to local populations. Since, media warfare tools have become even more sophisticated. The Pentagon recently developed a tool, for example, that enables users to manipulate Facebook posts by spreading a single message as if it originated from a wide host of users. This allows the US Department of Defense to promote its own messages while undermining those that naturally spread on the web. Israel has also been using similar techniques, especially in the Gaza Strip. Other than interrupting radio and television broadcasts, the Israeli authorities work hard to spread rumors and false information among the residents of Gaza, in an effort to undermine Hamas’ authority. Combating these attacks is difficult, as they take place covertly without the knowledge of its victims. Raising awareness to these issues is thus the only way to protect the Palestinian people from the Israeli attacks. This should be the priority of the Palestinian Authority in the West Bank and Hamas in the Gaza Strip. – Saleh al-Noami

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