New Report Documents Anti-Israel Ad Campaigns Sprouting Up All Over America
A new report details the cropping up of anti-Israel advertisements across the United States over the past few years.
The report — “Misleading the Public: the Spread of Anti-Israel Ad Campaigns” — was released on Friday by the U.S.-based non-governmental international Jewish civil-rights organization the Anti-Defamation League (ADL). It highlights the use of public spaces on the part of organizations aiming to promote anti-Israel sentiment. These spaces include billboards, buses and trains.
According to ADL findings, since 2012, there have been at least 20 major anti-Israel campaigns in more than 65 American cities.
“Over the past several years, across the country from New York to California, we have seen various anti-Israel groups attempt to mislead and misinform the public about the Jewish state through the use of public ad campaigns,” said Jonathan A. Greenblatt, ADL national director. “These ads, which seek to smear and delegitimize Israel, exhibit a gross distortion of historical facts, and do nothing to promote any type of critical thinking or promote civil discussions about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.”
The report shows that the “most common theme promoted by anti-Israel ad campaigns calls for an end to U.S. financial and military aid to Israel, claiming that such support has a negative impact on both foreign and domestic policy. Israel is depicted as using U.S. military aid to engage in human rights violations that provoke anger and resentment across the Middle East and U.S support to Israel’s military budget is also portrayed as undercutting U.S.-sponsored peace negotiations. From a domestic standpoint, the ad campaigns suggest that the money being sent to Israel is redirected from social programs that could benefit Americans and from critical infrastructure in cities throughout the country.”
The latest such effort was launched by the “Stop the Blank Check” campaign in Orlando, Florida, in August.
Commenting on the phenomenon, while urging people who come across it to disregard the fallacious claims about Israeli actions and history, Oren Segal, director of ADL’s Center on Extremism, said: “Some groups within the anti-Israel movement are using highly visible platforms like billboards to distort reality and attack Israel’s image. As the public comes across these ads on their local city buses or on highway billboards during their commute to work, they should take the messages for what they are – false inflammatory rhetoric designed to isolate Israel.”