Here we focus on a small, but very persistent slice of that pie we know as propaganda.
A Guide To HASBARA TROLLS
Hasbara is an Hebrew word defined as explanation. The purpose of Hasbara is to explain and educate western people about the Israeli mission. Hasbara can take many forms, adverts, websites, comments on blogs, letter writing, protests and so on. For a fuller idea of the depth of Habsara check this tool-kit from the We Believe in Israel Website. (made by BICOM). The difference between propaganda and hasbara? I would say Hasbara is more of a soft sell at first, it seeks to inform, influence and educate the ignorant to the Israeli cause. The narrative of Hasbara has a victimized quality underpinning it, a very passive-aggressive approach, Israel is always defending not attacking. They play the mis-understood victim and invite their critics to attack them. The sub-current being that Israel’s message is not understood. Israel views that the reason for this is either lack of education or stupidity. So the Hasbara agents explain until they realise that they are getting nowhere and then respond with disdain and disgust.
Julian AsangeKey individuals are identified, some support Israel others oppose. These are the influencers, on Twitter they are people with over 1 000 followers and over 1 000 tweets. By seeking to influence and control these key individuals, Hasbara agents can influence many many more. Hasbara trolls on twitter try to act as shepherds for the tweeps, making them go this way or that.
A troll traditionally on the Internet is someone indulges in off-topic abuse.
a troll is someone who posts inflammatory
extraneous, or off-topic messages in an online community, such as an online discussion forum, chat room, or blog, with the primary intent of provoking readers into an emotional response
or of otherwise disrupting normal on-topic discussion.
I believe that calling someone – anti-semite or neo-nazi or racist is inflammatory, unless that is their actual beliefs.
By controlling information one can control people and the social networks. Hasbara volunteers help to police social networks for Israel. The big media are dealt with through BICOM and AIPAC, whilst the social media are policed unofficially by the Hasbara troll brigade. Priority is to stop influencers being compromised by anti-Israel sentiment.
Hasbara Troll brigade
Hasbara Trolls are generally quite polite at first. They pop up when someone is critical of Israel and it’s policies or interests. They target, write, engage, educate and insult. From my research it seems that there is some kind of hierarchy of trolls, they have leaders who tell them targets and guide them with their spin. Most work voluntarily but some are paid for by wealthy sponsors. They track topical keywords and persons using public websites such as topsy.com. Problems arise if one rejects the explanations being offered by the trolls, then their troll nature becomes apparent very quickly as they resort to smears and abuse.
Hasbara Troll attributes
Supreme point of view
The Hasbara troll knows best
Condescending & Patronising
Socialist (Smart and ‘caring’)
Do not have to be Jewish but Pro-Israel
Like to ask the questions, not answer questions
Inflamed by anyone being critical of Israel
Classic insults: Anti-semite, Neo- Nazi, White Supremacist, Holocaust denier
Adept with social networks well trained on IT
Hasbara trolls use internet alerts to warn them when hot keywords are mentioned. Keywords such as Israel, Jewish, Judaism etc. When those words are mentioned they are alerted and they go to investigate who is talking about what. I have seen this happen many times with Gilad Atzmon, someone will post something from Gilad, shortly afterwards they are bombarded by hasbara trolls. Initially they explain where they had gone wrong and try to ‘educate’ people with their ideology. Usually they say something like
Do you know Gilad Atzmon is a notorious… anti-semite? neo-nazi, holocaust denier. etc.. etc.
The way to spot the troll is the inflammatory language. If Gilad was a anti-semite it should be self evident but he says quite clearly in his book “the Wandering Who” .
“In this book i will try to untangle the knot. I will present a harsh criticsm of Jewish politics and identity. Yet it is crucial to mention at this early stage that there will be not a single reference to Jews as ethnicity or race. In my writing, I differentiate between Jews (the people), Judaism (the religion) and Jewish-ness (the ideology). This book does not deal with Jews as a people or ethnicity. If anything, my studies of this issue suggest that Jews do not form any kind of racial continuum. In short, those who are searching for blood or race-related interpretation on Zionism will have to look for it in someone else’s work.” Gilad Atzmon P15 Chapter 1 -The Wandering Who.
Types of Jewishness
Jews (the people) – born a jew, being jewish.
Judaism (the religion) – Jewish beliefs.
Jewish-ness (the ideology) – Jewish ideas
Despite Gilad Atzmon making a clear and unequivocal point above, it has not stopped many zombie zionist hasbara trolls from accusing him time and time again and many others of anti-semitism or being a neo-nazi. What is wrong with these pathetic and misguided people? Can’t they read, or have their brains just curdled in their own cranium. The truth is they choose not to read or listen or debate.
I would actually say, those people who advocate every interventionalist war in the name of freedom of speech, democracy and pluralism, are operating in the west as gatekeepers, censors and resent any form of intellectual debate – Gilad Atzmon
These people are the new Book burners, those that oppose freedom in all its forms. These Hasbara trolls oppose free speech and try to suppress open and free debate and instead replace it with their own hasbara wash & spin.
It is astonishing the amount of times I have seen trolls warning people not to read this book or that book. Why do we have all these twitter trolls trying to influence what people choose to read?
Are they the people of the anti book?- Gilad Atzmon
We must unite to name and shame these despicable individuals as they try to suppress free and open debate. These people pose a great threat to our political systems and must be identified to stop them spreading their vile mis-information far and wide.
Turn up randomly asking question about Israel, trying to engage/educate.
Guilt by association, they point to some source your are linked to as being anti-semitic or neo-nazi.
Opportunity to redeem – the offer chance to recant from your naive ways.
Smears and insults – if the top 3 fail then it’s just character assassination.
Name bombing – using seo in blackhat ways to denounce and smear people. ie website with 37 mentions of someones name will prob get a Page one on Google.
Hasbara trolls generally follow the rules of social networks, because they want to continue to influence people and subvert open and free debate.
Hasbara being guided by CST
After repeated attempts to indoctrinate you, I mean educate you, the Hasbara trolls then resort to name bombing. Mentioning a persons name as many times as possible on social network sites to create negative report with strong SEO. Basically using the internetto smear people to the maximum.
Hasbara Trolls are well organised and have links they point to to prove their flaky points. Although the links these trolls cite are often from their own hasbara chums and the blogs they reference do not have original source material just second hand re-cobbled quotes.
but there are many who would like us to think so. The question is why? To dis-credit him and his ideas. But it is not just Gilad Atzmon who is the target of the Hasbara trolls the list is long and growing.
To the right are a series of tweets from #Joe86pw, I have observed him part-time trolling on many occasions. Here he spots that Tom Watson famous Labour MP is thinking of buying a new book by Mearsheimer. – “Why leaders Lie” . Joe spots this tweet and shortly after is tweeting a helpful warning to Tom Watson MP (Hackgate MP) about that dangerous book.
In these following tweets we see the “Emma Rosenthal” guiding a troll. @johne326 got upset when I placed him on my troll list. I asked him why he was trolling Gilad Atzmon and he responded to me that it was clear to him that Gilad Atzmon is an anti-semite. All I want to say is this John, ” look up the definition of trolling”. I have never been into politics but sure enough the lovely open-minded “Emma Rosenthal” wastes no time at all in denouncing me as a “White supremacist”.
Just mentioning Gilad Atzmon on twitter is sufficient to attract the Hasbara vermin within a very short time. They all know each other as well and they enjoy bullying dissenters with their chums. Really it is just like being back at school being bullied by the school gang. Usually the lead bully goes into to attack whilst others stand by making encouraging noises. We are ‘told’ that we live in a free society, but we don’t! Free speech and debate are being squashed by the likes of BICOM, AIPAC and a small army of annoying Hasbara trolls. We must work together to stop them. From Truth comes Peace.
Eight years ago this spring, at the height of the suicide bombings of Yasser Arafat’s terror war known as the second intifada, I started blogging about Jewish and Israeli issues. This, of course, brought out the anti-Israel crazies. I came up with a corollary to Godwin’s Law to describe these trolls: “In any internet discussion area concerning Israel, politics, or religion, the probability of anti-Semitic comments approaches one.” (In fact, I’ve seen comments threads that have absolutely nothing to do with Israel, politics, or religion still devolve into anti-Semitism and Israel-bashing, but that’s a post for another time.)
And so, based on the thousands of comments and emails I’ve read over the years, both here and on other blogs and media sites, I present The Blogger’s Guide to Anti-Semitic Comments Trolls. Below are the some of the types of anti-Israel commenters I’ve identified over the years, but the list is by no means complete.
The garden-variety neo-Nazi Jew-hater: Yadda yadda Jews die, yadda yadda Jews suck, yadda yadda Jews control the world, yadda yadda bankers, kikes, money, world media, ZOG, yadda yadda, yadda yadda. These are the Stormfront community Jew-haters who have never been able to figure out why their life sucks so bad, so they blame the Jews. (Here’s a tip: Look in the mirror. It’s all your fault, bubelahs. There is no vast Jewish conspiracy that made you stupid and talentless; you did that all by yourself. Oh, and God doesn’t love you, either. He told me so himself at the last ZOG meeting.)
The Faux Jew: This one is usually fairly easy to spot. The Faux Jew is often a neo-Nazi fresh from a stint at Stormfront, where he and his buddies have just discussed what they think Jews really think. He comes to my blog to pretend to be a Jew so he can trap me with his wily Faux Jew comment. He adds “stein” to a last name that generally doesn’t sound Jewish at all. He will use “Moshe” or “Hesh” or “Abe” or another name that he thinks is typically Jewish. (For some reason, these creeps never use Murray or Harry or Josh. Oh, wait. The reason is they’re effing morons and don’t really know anything about Jews.)
The Faux Jew likes to pretend to be a bloodthirsty, bigoted asshat who puts up gleeful comments about the death of Palestinians. He uses the word “goyim” a lot (because he thinks that all Jews, when talking among ourselves, use the word “goyim” a lot, always in a derogatory fashion). Over the years, I’ve come to realize that what they want me to do is publish their comment and then say, “Right on, Fellow Jew!” Because, you know, that’s what we do. A quick test to see if your Faux Jew is Stormfront material: If you substitute the word “Jew” for “goyim” in his comment, the true (and ugly) face of the Faux Jew will appear.
Sometimes, the Faux Jew uses faux quotes by real Jews. A quick check on Google will show you that the quote is fabricated, taken completely out of context, or originates on a neo-Nazi website, and is referenced only by neo-Nazi websites. That’s your clue that the commenter is probably a regular at the Stormfront Annual Picnic in East Podunk, Idaho. (I hear the fifty spots for next year’s picnic are filling up fast; reserve now.) The Faux Jew will also use Yiddish words, misspelled and misused. If your commenter sounds like he picked up Yiddish by watching Mike Myers on Saturday Night Live, he’s a Faux Jew.
The last strain of Faux Jew is a little harder to detect. I had one that took me a while figure out, but something about the troll kept sitting wrong with me from the get-go. The Faux Jews that work really hard at it will use Hebrew words and throw in Torah quotes. The dead giveaway there is that Christians will almost always apply the principles of the religion that they learned growing up—Christianity. Believe me when I tell you that to a Jew who is even semi-observant, it’s really noticeable. This type of Faux Jew uses Christian dogma without realizing it. Also, it’s really hard to fake being an observant Jew. The dead giveaway: Posting on Shabbat. That happens more often than you’d think, because most anti-Semitic comments trolls are not all that bright.
The Mikey Rivero Wannabes: Mikey Rivero runs the execrable and anti-Semitic “What Really Happened” website. The man is positively obsessed with bashing Jews and Israel, and he writes (and runs) long-winded, boring articles that purport to prove just how evil, vicious, and inhuman Jews and Israelis really are. The Mikey Rivero Wannabe will post long-winded, boring articles that s/he finds on various anti-Semitic websites. S/he is especially fond of reposting articles by Norman Finkelstein and Noam Chomsky.
The Intolerant Atheist: This comments troll likes to pretend that s/he hates all religions equally, but after the opening salvo, s/he goes on and on about the evil Jews who think that Israel should be a Jews-only country. That’s the tic that gives them away: They never seem to notice that there are large populations of Israeli Arabs and Christians right there in that Jews-only state. Nor do they seem overly upset about the Islamic-only nations in the world. No, the only religion that bothers them seems to be Judaism. I wonder why that is? (Not really. See title.)
The “I’m an Anti-Zionist, Not An Anti-Semite” Troll: This one insists, over and over again, that s/he has nothing against Jews, it’s just Israel that s/he can’t stand. While defending this stand, however, the anti-Jewish remarks always seem to just slip out. These are also the trolls who make it a point to preface all of their remarks with “Of course you’re going to call me an anti-Semite for criticizing Israel.” This sort of troll spreads out into the mainstream (cf: Walt, Mearsheimer, Carter).
The David Duke/Pat Buchanan/Ron Paul Defenders: It is absolutely astonishing how fast the defenders of these three stooges come out of the woodwork. It’s zero to Jew-hate in no time at all. The mere fact that I posted their names here will bring out their supporters in droves
The “Just The Facts, Ma’am” Irritant: This troll thinks that civilian vs. soldier casualty counts are more important than, say, the number of Israelis killed and wounded by kassam rockets. The word “genocide” gets thrown around a lot in relation to the Palestinians, even though if Israel is conducting genocide against them, it’s the worst genocide ever, what with there being only a few thousand deaths since 1948 (even including the War of Independence) and the growth of the Palestinian population since then. Comparisons with actual genocides, such as the destruction of two-thirds of Europe’s Jewry, fall upon deaf ears with this troll.
The Really Annoying Moron Who Think This Blog Is A Democracy Troll: They’re not really anti-Semitic, they’re just effing annoying. They blather on and on about how the author refuses to allow dissenting opinions, when what they really mean is that I don’t write what they want me to write. And when directed to my No Israel-Bashing Zone post, they melt down into fits of incoherent rage. I suspect they all have control issues. I suspect that I really don’t care.
That’s about all I can think of for now. I know I’ve missed a few troll types, but I can revisit this theme at a later date. In closing, I would like to direct all the anti-Semitic trolls reading this post to the Yourish.com
Besides, it happens that the number of Germans killed by Allied bombing in World War II is about ten times the number of British civilians killed by German bombs and rockets. Would anyone then claim that the moral balance goes to the Germans? Well, OK, there are some who would but they’re idiots and moral imbeciles.
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