The Irish Independent, Irish Sun, Irish Times, Irish Mirror, Irish Examiner and The Daily Telegraph all report on a series of doctored images posted on Twitter by staff at the Israeli embassy in Dublin that warn of an ‘Islamic invasion’ of Europe and proclaims Israel to be “the last frontier of the free world”. The Irish Central also notes that the images were posted on the embassy’s Facebook page.
The images use European landmarks and works of art to scaremonger about ‘Eurabia’ and elicit European support for Israel’s brutal bombardment of Gaza.
One of the images showed Dublin’s iconic statue of Molly Malone covered by a full length black niqab with the words “Israel now Dublin next” placed on it.
Another image titled “Israel now Paris next” depicted Mona Lisa wearing a hijab and holding a rocket in her hand. The Mona Lisa hangs in the French museum Le Louvre.
In yet another image, Michelangelo’s statue of David was portrayed with Arab head-dress and an explosive belt around its waist. It was accompanied by the words “Israel now Italy next.”
In a fourth image, Edvard Eriksen’s statue of the Little Mermaid in Copenhagen is shown to be an armed militant holding a large gun. Again, the image is emblazoned with the similar words, “Israel now Denmark next.”
According to the Irish Independent and Irish Central, a spokesman for the Israeli embassy confirmed to the Irish Sun that the images were sent from official Facebook and Twitter accounts.
The spokesman added that “they were taken down, I don’t know why.
“Often things get deleted for space reasons but it wasn’t taken down because of any complaints.”
Both the Irish Mirror and the Irish Times note that the series of images follow the embassy’s previous tweet of a Palestinian flag superimposed on a picture of Adolf Hitler with the words “Free Palestine now”.
In a similar vein, the Daily Telegraph observed last week that the Israeli Defence Forces tweeted a doctored image portraying the Houses of Parliament in flames with rockets flying overhead.
Andy Slaughter, a Labour MP and secretary of Britain-Palestine All-Party Parliamentary Group, said at the time: “It seems crass at best. The Israelis are past masters at propaganda. This will bring it home to Members that they have lost all sense of perspective and are out of control.”
The Israeli ambassador to Ireland, Boaz Modai, told the Daily Telegraph that he was unable to comment because “we are now in the middle of a war and I have other things to deal with”.
The use of social media as a propaganda tool by Israel has been noted in several reports filed by journalists since the launch of Israel’s destructive military campaign in Gaza last month and its desperate attempt to win over global public opinion despite warning from the UN’s human rights commissioner of possible war crimes being committed.
In the Independent on Sunday, columnist Patrick Cockburn drew attention to The Israel Project and its ‘Global Language Dictionary’, designed to drip feed pro-Israeli propaganda on the airwaves. Cockburn writes:
“On every occasion, the presentation of events by Israeli spokesmen is geared to giving Americans and Europeans the impression that Israel wants peace with the Palestinians and is prepared to compromise to achieve this, when all the evidence is that it does not. Though it was not intended as such, few more revealing studies have been written about modern Israel in times of war and peace.”