“As if They Just Dropped Dead”: Navigating the Israel-Palestine War of Words

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Journalistic pushback on Gaza is pressing, says media analyst Tamara Kharroub.

Open one social media platform and also you’re hit with a fake video; open one other and also you’re hit with bigotry. Open a news article, and also you’ll discover some victims “killed” however others “dying.” Each account of occasions in Israel and Palestine appears to depend on totally different details. What’s clear is that misinformation, hate speech, and factual distortions are working rampant.

How can we vet what we see in such a panorama? I spoke to consultants throughout the area of media, politics, tech, and communications about info networks round Israel’s conflict in Gaza. This interview, with media researcher Tamara Kharroub, is the third in a five-part collection that additionally consists of laptop scientist Megan Squire, journalist and information analyst Dina Ibrahim, communications and coverage scholar Ayse Lokmanoglu, and Bellingcat founder Eliot Higgins. 

Tamara Kharroub is the deputy director of Arab Center Washington DC, a analysis institute affiliated with the Qatar-based Arab Center for Research and Policy Studies. Kharroub, a researcher specializing in media and communications expertise in Middle East politics, has mapped digital authoritarianism, analyzed identity and geopolitics on social platforms, and tracked media discourse round Palestine and Israel for years. Most lately, Kharroub wrote on the relationship between disinformation, hate speech, and war crime in Gaza. Social media is indispensable to protection of the conflict, Kharroub says—but in addition the place it’s hardest to “distinguish between what’s fact and what’s false.”

I spoke with Kharroub to debate the historical past of bias and misinformation in media and the stakes of (mis)info in battle.

What’s the lay of the land in media round Palestine and Israel? What do numerous actors contribute?

Generally, and traditionally, media has all the time been used as a software by totally different actors to advance their agendas, affect public opinion, and achieve help for his or her insurance policies or actions. Looking particularly at what’s occurring proper now, in Palestine and Israel, there’s an try right here for each actor to current themselves as the strongest or victimized, and to get help for no matter actions they’re taking.

Israel has the higher hand right here. There isn’t any symmetry in phrases of energy. There’s an occupying energy and an occupied inhabitants. That tends to be lacking in most of the framing and reporting on what is going on. But additionally, which means that Israel has the leverage and the assets to have extra affect on totally different info areas.

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