A copy of a letter distributed by the Palestinian
embassy in Santiago, Chile.(photo:Haaretz)
Here’s an interesting development. The Palestinian Foreign Ministry has distributed a letter to its embassies around the world ahead of the release of Palestinian prisoners on Tuesday pushing back on the hasbara meme that Palestinian prisoners are terrorists.
The Palestinian ministry says it’s Israelis who are the terrorists; Barak Ravid reporting in Haaretz: Palestinian Foreign Ministry: Israeli ministers are the terrorists, not the prisoners
“A terrorist is someone who forcefully occupies the other’s land, expels him and comes to live in his place,” the letter read, “…not the Palestinian political prisoner, the freedom fighter.”
The letter from embassies around the world also criticized senior Israeli officials for defining prisoners as terrorists. For example, Economy Minister Naftali Bennett is quoted as saying that terrorists should be eliminated, not put in prison. After his comments from the cabinet meeting were made public, Bennett clarified that he did not mean the prisoners should be killed after their arrest.
“The [Palestinian] Foreign Ministry strongly condemns the Israeli statements and positions and sees them as a diversion attempt aimed at drawing attention from the accusation against the true Israeli criminals,” the letter says. “They distort the image of the Palestinian freedom fighter, who struggles against the occupation and fights in accordance to international law.”
Ravid opens his article characterizing the letters as the Palestinian Authority conducting a “PR campaign” on the issue. Interesting, when Ravid reported yesterday of another (more permanent) PR campaign being waged out of Israel accusing Palestinians of incitement (see here here here here), he didn’t use that term. It’s rare we hear of Israeli hasbara efforts as “PR campaigns”.
In a war of words, barbs, and tit for tats it’s touche for Palestine doubling down with an injection of truth today. More from Ravid on the Palestinian’s embassy letter:
The letter also says that “the Israelis are hiding the face of the Israeli terrorist, who forcefully occupies the land of the other people, expels them, destroys what makes up their everyday life and replaces them with foreign settlers. The international definition of terrorism completely befits some Israeli politicians, who distort the image of the freedom-fighting Palestinian prisoner, especially [the image] of those sitting in Israeli prisoners from before the signing of the Oslo Accords in 1993.”