Israel’s botched propaganda on life in Gaza

Al Jazeera reports on Israel’s propaganda campaign whose aim is to promote the message that the residents of Gaza, even while living under a severe economic blockade, “have everything they need.” As part of that effort, Israel distributed video footage of a guests enjoying fine cuisine in a gourmet restaurant in Gaza — guests including Mahmoud Abbas who hasn’t set foot in Gaza since the siege began!

Gisha, the legal center for freedom of movement based in Israel, reports (via Mondoweiss):

At a time when Israel’s security officials should probably be focused on this week’s extensive home front security drill, it seems that that most of their attention is being paid to the flotilla of ships on its way to the Gaza Strip, laden with humanitarian supplies. Frantic consultations between officials and the prime minister’s top military chiefs of staff have taken place, an urgent meeting of a forum of senior government ministers was held, and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has engaged in extensive activities, and an urgent press conference was held at the Erez border crossing. In particular, the Israeli government’s public relations machine has been mobilized with the intent of persuading the public that there is no need for the flotilla, due to the fact that the humanitarian situation in Gaza is fine, the Strip’s markets are abundant, and its gourmet restaurants are thriving.

Sheikh Raed Salah, from the Islamic Movement in Israel, tells Al Jazeera:

The official Arab role in this campaign is missing but that of the Arab people is not. We have campaigners coming from Kuwait, Jordan and Mauritania, Yemen and Algeria and that is a message we sent to the leaders. How beautiful it would be if you would reconcile with the stance of your people in their support of the cause of the Palestinians.

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