Israel is hiring troves of university students to flood social media sites with pro-Israel messages, without revealing themselves as government hires, Israeli officials announced Wednesday.
The initiative will be led by the controversial public figure Daniel Seaman, who recently came under fire for filling his own Facebook page with abusive and racially biased anti-Muslim and anti-Palestinian messages.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu billed the initiative as a student scholarship program that will also fight ‘antisemitism’ and calls for a boycott of Israel.
“This is a groundbreaking project aimed at strengthening Israeli national diplomacy and adapting it to changes in information consumption,” reads a government statement released Wednesday.
Critics, however, charge that this is simply a desperate effort to stem a growing tide of protests against occupation and apartheid policies of the Israeli government.
“As it becomes clearer to more and more people around the world that what the Israeli government is doing against Palestinians is criminal, the government becomes desperate to shape discourse to defend its actions,” Ramah Kudaimi from the US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation told Common Dreams.
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