Pallywood ‘Free Gaza’ case – Palestinian PR Stunt Fails As Israel Allows Gaza Protest

 
http://www.israelnewsagency.com…

Palestinian
PR Stunt Fails As Israel Allows Gaza Protest

A Palestinian
“Exodus”?
The only thing missing was Steven Spielberg and democracy.

 

 

 

By
Joel Leyden
Israel News Agency 

Jerusalem,
Israel — August 23, 2008 … Israel’s PR has always been
lacking. One can find three very well substantiated reasons:
lack of professional public relations manpower in government,
lack of funds and lack of coordinated communications between
the Israel Prime Minister’s Office, the Israel Ministry for
Foreign Affairs and Israel Defense Forces.

But
today was different.
The terror group Hamas tried to stage a media PR event and failed
big time.

 

“We
knew about this Hamas attempt to create a PR event at sea for
weeks,” Ministry of Foreign Affairs Spokesmen Arye Mekel
told the Israel News Agency.

“We
knew who’s on these boats and what they contain, and therefore
we decided weeks ago to allow them to come into Gaza. They were
not carrying weapons and had only a handful of equipment for
the hearing impaired.”

It
appears that hearing aids for Hamas are needed. So are prescription
eyeglasses.

According
to the Israel Defense Forces,
approximately 300 humanitarian trucks filled with food, medical
supplies and fuel pass daily into Gaza. “Gaza has food,”
says Mekel. “They only thing they lack is freedom and democracy.”

Under
the security closure imposed by Israel in June 2007 after Hamas
violently attacked the Palestinian Authority in Gaza, Israel
has allowed tons of UN supplied humanitarian supplies into Gaza.

 

So
as Hamas failed to create an “Exodus” type event at
sea, they also failed to please their own people in Gaza. Since
leaving Cyprus on Friday, the failed PR event staged by the
US – based Free Gaza Movement had always been in doubt.


The residents of Gaza were disappointed by the total lack of
food supposed to have been brought in by the two Palestine boats
carrying international leftist activists.

“Many
people thought these boats would make a significant contribution
to break the siege, not only politically but also in terms of
bringing in goods, equipment, food, and medicine,” one
Gazan said. “However, once it turned out these boats contained
no food and only activists, most people left the beach disappointed.”

Israel
government sources state that tons of UN, US and Israel humanitarian
aid never even reach the citizens of Gaza. The food is confiscated
by Hamas, given to their own people, some of the UN and Red
Cross supplies are sold on the black market and about 30 percent
is simply destroyed to create a PR image of Gazans going hungry.

All
the same it was Pallywood, a Hollywood event which begged hundreds
of Gazans to come to the beach and greet the leftist activists
at the beach.

The
two Palestinian boats, carrying 46 international left-wing activists
who support Hamas suicide bombers and rocket attacks on Israel
towns and cities, reached the Gaza beach at around 6:00 pm today.
The 46 activists from 14 countries included an 81-year-old Catholic
nun and Lauren Booth, the sister-in-law of international Mideast
envoy and former British Prime Minister Tony Blair.

Dozens
of Gazans headed out to sea in fishing boats to welcome the
Hamas supporters. Among these were a Tunisian, German, US citizens,
as well as an Israel activist.

Mekel
confirmed that the failed PR stunt was staged by Hamas.

“One
cannot place any responsibility on the Palestinian Authority
for these theatrics as the PA has no control of Gaza.”

What
Mekel was stating was that this was not a “Palestinian”
public relations event. In fact, the PA and it’s forces have
been at odds with Hamas for many months with much blood shed
between the two. The PA supports the Middle-East peace process,
while Iran backed Hamas continues to openly call for the destruction
of Israel and attacks Israel city and town with Qassam rockets.

The so called “peace activists” which were on their
way to Gaza illustrated a complete and total disregard for innocent
Israel terror victims, said MFA Frimet Roth.

The Israel Foreign Ministry exposed the foreign supporters of
Hamas saying that they did not deserve to be referred to as
“peace activists,” labeling them as a “handful
of provocateurs seeking a public relations stunt who initiated
a political protest aimed at boosting Hamas’ regime of horrors
in Gaza.”

 

“How does such delusional journey promote peace?”
the Israel Foreign Ministry added. “What kind of contribution
does this journey make to the promotion of ideas of reconciliation
and compromise? None.”

Hamas spokesman Sammy Abu Zuhri said that Israel’s initial insistence
on torpedoing the arrival of boats carrying international activists
headed to Gaza “attests to the Israeli distress caused
by this international peace initiative.” There were also
reports that the protesters radio equipment had been jammed
by the IDF.

 

“None
of this was true,” said Mekel. “They were looking
for anything they could find to make a news story out of thin
air. Not one IDF ship was ever seen by these protesters.”

Mekel
pointed out that the decision not to prevent the protesters
from reaching Gaza was “made at the highest level of government.”
Which means that Israel Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, his security
cabinet and Israel’s Minister of Defense and Foreign Affairs
were not going to allow another Pallywood production. In the
past, Palestinians have been filmed being shot and appearing
to be dead. During Operation Defensive Shield Israel video footage
clearly shows Palestinian actors either falling off or getting
off first aid stretchers.

While
Mekel would not admit that it was clearly a public relations
victory for Israel, one can clearly see that Israel has come
a long way in its professional and honest approach with the
media. Even if the IDF has made a mistake for which they could
easily take a spin on, senior officers at the Israel Defense
Forces Spokespersons Office will not allow any lies.

“At
the end of the day, we do need to lie,” said an IDF spokesperson.
“If we make a mistake we will be the first to admit it.
While the international media sees day after day pure propaganda
coming from Gaza. The international media has come to learn
the difference between democracy and free speech at work in
Israel and Hamas terrorism in Gaza. Journalists have long memories.
And many remember Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl
and the recent kidnappings of journalists in Gaza by Hamas.”

Israel
officials made a point of highlighting that sincere humanitarian
groups could continue to provide humanitarian aid to the Palestinian
population with aid to the UN and International Red Cross through
existing land crossings. Israel has always drawn and respected
the distinction between the civilian population in Gaza and
Iran backed Hamas terrorists.

“They
are very brave, they are very strong, I am proud of them,”
said Samira Ayash, a 65-year-old retired school teacher who
came to watch the failed Gaza PR event. An European reporter
followed Ayash as he returned to Gaza Port. He was greeted by
two young men in beards who shook his hand and then took out
a wallet and handed Ayash money.

Palestinians
are well paid to speak to the press by Hamas.

 

 

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