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July 18, 2014 11:53 am

Hamas Instructs Social Media Legions: ‘Anyone Killed or Martyred is to Be Called a Civilian’ and ‘Don’t Forget to Always Add ‘Innocent Civilian”

avatar by Joshua Levitt

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The official logo on the Facebook page that instructed activists how to report all dead as "innocent civilians." Photo: Facebook / Screenshot.

The official logo on the Facebook page that instructed activists how to report all dead as "innocent civilians." Photo: Facebook / Screenshot.

Hamas has instructed its social media legions to be careful with terminology used to describe Israel’s Operation Protective Edge on Facebook, posting a revealing set of guidelines on its own Facebook page, MEMRI, the Middle East Media Research Institute, reported on Thursday. Among its recommendations, social media activists were told to describe anyone who dies as a “civilian,” and specifically were reminded, “Don’t forget to always add ‘innocent civilian.'”

MEMRI said: “The Information Department of the Ministry of the Interior and National Security has instructed activists on social media websites, particularly Facebook, to correct some of the commonly used terms as they cover the aggression taking place in the Gaza Strip. The following Information Department video calls on all activists to use the proper terminology, in order to play their part in strengthening the home front and in properly conveying information worldwide.”

MEMRI translated the original Facebook post into English.

“Anyone killed or martyred is to be called a civilian from Gaza or Palestine, before we talk about his status in jihad or his military rank. Don’t forget to always add ‘innocent civilian’ or ‘innocent citizen’ in your description of those killed in Israeli attacks on Gaza.”

“Begin [your reports of] news of resistance actions with the phrase ‘In response to the cruel Israeli attack,’ and conclude with the phrase ‘This many people have been martyred since Israel launched its aggression against Gaza.’ Be sure to always perpetuate the principle of ‘the role of the occupation is attack, and we in Palestine are fulfilling [the role of] the reaction.'”

“Beware of spreading rumors from Israeli spokesmen, particularly those that harm the home front. Be wary regarding accepting the occupation’s version [of events]. You must always cast doubts on this [version], disprove it, and treat it as false.”

“Avoid publishing pictures of rockets fired into Israel from [Gaza] city centers. This [would] provide a pretext for attacking residential areas in the Gaza Strip. Do not publish or share photos or video clips showing rocket launching sites or the movement of resistance [forces] in Gaza.”

“To the administrators of news pages on Facebook: Do not publish close-ups of masked men with heavy weapons, so that your page will not be shut down [by Facebook] on the claim that you are inciting violence. In your coverage, be sure that you say: ‘The locally manufactured shells fired by the resistance are a natural response to the Israeli occupation that deliberately fires rockets against civilians in the West Bank and Gaza'”

The Interior Ministry also prepared a list of recommendations for activists who speak to Westerners via social media, instructing them to interact differently than in conversations with other Arabs:

“When speaking to the West, you must use political, rational, and persuasive discourse, and avoid emotional discourse aimed at begging for sympathy. There are elements with a conscience in the world; you must maintain contact with them and activate them for the benefit of Palestine. Their role is to shame the occupation and expose its violations.”

“Avoid entering into a political argument with a Westerner aimed at convincing him that the Holocaust is a lie and deceit; instead, equate it with Israel’s crimes against Palestinian civilians.”

“The narrative of life vs. the narrative of blood: [When speaking] to an Arab friend, start with the number of martyrs. [But when speaking] to a Western friend, start with the number of wounded and dead. Be sure to humanize the Palestinian suffering. Try to paint a picture of the suffering of the civilians in Gaza and the West Bank during the occupation’s operations and its bombings of cities and villages.”

“Do not publish photos of military commanders. Do not mention their names in public, and do not praise their achievements in conversations with foreign friends!”

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  • Yale

    Israel’s supporters should get into the habit of reporting all civilian deaths in Gaza as victims of Hamas’ genocidal war and crimes against humanity. Israel could assist by reporting the number of “human shield” casualties at each site attacked so they can be added to the tally of Hamas’s war.

    It would also be beneficial to compare the tally of “human shields” against the total claimed deaths (recognizing that Hamas also under-reports deaths of its fighters). I’d bet its a fairly high fraction of the total claimed for “civilians”.

  • Judy Silver-Shapiro

    hamas, as well as muslims worldwide, have learned the PR game quite well.

    The fact that today the worldwide media keeps stressing the number of dead Gazans is despicable.

    hamas is, was, and always will be the reason for ALL of the muslim dead.

    ANTI SEMITISM is at the bottom of all of the JEW-BASHING in the US and worldwide.

    SON-OF-ISlAM obama is a pro at stirring the cauldron of escalating US ISRAEL-HATRED & ANTI-SEMITISM.

  • rick K

    Hamas knows how to use the media. There are no surprises with these statements, only reassurance that it is a corrupt terrorist organization. I hope the message can be spread quickly to other reputable organizations.

  • rachel robinson

    no one is better in manipulating a stupid and ignorant world as the Hamas terrorists. You cannot unring a bell, and you cannot shout louder than they do, and they sure know how stupid the world is, and this is how the whole world helps them. Israel is fighting this war with tweezers, Israel has instructed it soldiers not to shoot and take risks rather than kill civilians. But Gaza is not an organized state, with an army, all of Gaza is nothing but civilians, not all of course “innocents” but they got the world to use their language as a propaganda machine that does their bidding. Why is this language not used when the missiles are aimed at nothing but civilians, and in Israel there is an army and settles communities, but the missiles are not aimed at the army camps, they are specifically aimed at the centers of cities. Israel plainly does not have friends in the world to protect it even with words.

  • Yona

    I hope this information has or is getting out to as many non-Jewish news sites and organizations as possible. People outside the Jewish community need to know this.

  • Bart A, Charta

    The Hamas “Ministerial” (that’s a laugh in itself) seal has a blatant spelling error.

    “Inferior” is not spelled with a “T” but with an “F”.

  • Arab constant dissemination of lies and false history is ingrained in their culture.
    It is the naivety of some Israelis and the world at large that the Arabs can be trusted. If anything the past history has proven is that the Arabs cannot be trusted at all.
    Judea and Samaria is Jewish Land under international law.
    The Arab mentality and practice is to fabricate reality, to their own people and to the world at large, they have done that for centuries. Obfuscation, rewriting history and factual realities is their mantra.
    The Arabs do not need an excuse to riot and pillage, it is in their genes – look what they are doing to each other in other Arab-Moslem countries.
    Stop living in fantasy, the Arabs do not want peace, they want to destroy Israel – it is time to face reality.
    “If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it. The lie can be maintained only for such time as the State can shield the people from the political, economic and/or military consequences of the lie. It thus becomes vitally important for the State to use all of its powers to repress dissent, for the truth is the mortal enemy of the lie, and thus by extension, the truth is the greatest enemy of the State.”

    • Paul

      How come Judea and Samaria is Jewish Land under international law ?

  • have predicted this for years and have been considered a radical while some other Rabbis stuck their heads in the sand. and kept silent. I have been ridiculed by my liberal colleagues for speaking out against all anti-Semites and especially extremist Muslims. Some have said I speak to much about the Holocaust. Now the truth that I predicted has raised its ugly head. Rabbi Dr. Bernhard Rosenberg

  • Konrad D.K.

    Dear Sir,

    I did not make it on time to send you my dolar but I wish You all the best.

    Thank you for your reporting.

    I send you an English translation of the libretto G.Verdi’s Nabucco and what is colloquially known as the “March of the Hebrew Slaves.”

    Fly, thought, on wings of gold;
    go settle upon the slopes and the hills,
    where, soft and mild, the sweet airs
    of our native land smell fragrant!

    Greet the banks of the Jordan
    and Zion’s toppled towers…
    Oh, my country, so beautiful and lost!
    Oh, remembrance, so dear and so fatal!

    Golden harp of the prophetic seers,
    why dost thou hang mute upon the willow?
    Rekindle our bosom’s memories,
    and speak to us of times gone by!

    Mindful of the fate of Jerusalem,
    give forth a sound of crude lamentation,
    or may the Lord inspire you a harmony of voices
    which may instill virtue to suffering.