May 19, 2024
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A BDS Shaming Campaign: Rebecca’s Story

(Courtesy of Shurat HaDin) Imagine you wake up one morning to find that two million people falsely accuse you of murder.

In early June 2018, 24-year-old Rebecca Rum woke up to find herself the target of a viral BDS shaming campaign. Her phone and social media accounts were bombarded with hate messages in multiple languages accusing her of murder and calling her a trained Nazi. “I received thousands of threats. Even a $5 million bounty for my head. My friends and family messaged me, saying they were receiving these hate messages and threats, too. They were very upset and afraid for my safety. I felt like someone had really intruded on my privacy, my world.”

In the summer of 2012, Rebecca, then 18, made a brave decision to leave the comfort of her home in the U.S. and move to Israel. She joined the IDF Education and Youth Corps and served three years of active duty. Two years into her service, the IDF Spokesperson’s Unit asked Rebecca to participate in a social media explanatory campaign; she gladly accepted. The photo posted to the IDF’s official Facebook page showed her smiling in full uniform and holding an M16.

Little did she know that four years later the same photograph would be twisted against her by BDS activists, making her the target of hate-filled messages and death threats.

The first false Facebook post was published and shared by BDS activist Suhair Nafal. She accused Rebecca of joining the IDF to participate in the ethnic cleansing of the Palestinian people. She then juxtaposed Rebecca’s picture with Razan Al-Najjar, a Palestinian nurse shot during the riots at the Gaza border with Israel, insinuating Rebecca was a “sniper” who killed Al Najjar. Nafal’s followers clearly understood this. It didn’t take long before the Freedom for Gaza Facebook page altered the post and shared it with more than 100,000 of its followers. The new post explicitly accused Rebecca of being a “trained killer” who “executed a 21-year-old Palestinian nurse in Gaza.” The post was shared nearly 15 thousand times.

In less than 48 hours, similar posts from BDS and other anti-Israel Facebook pages and Twitter accounts were shared tens of thousands of times and translated into a dozen languages. The fake news tsunami accusing Rebecca of being a cold-blooded murderer reached close to two million social media users, turning this innocent young woman into the target of a raging social media mob.

Rebecca’s nightmare is yet another painful example of the anti-Israel BDS mob’s violent and destructive nature. It spares no one from its campaign to delegitimize Israel. This time they targeted Rebecca with lies, anti-Semitism and hate. Next time someone else’s daughter or son will wake up to the same nightmare.

Fighting the BDS movement is more than defending Israel. We champion the truth against the conspiracies and lies spewed by BDS to destroy Israel and all Jews worldwide. We fight to ensure those who conspire to spread hate and disinformation are punished and stand with their victims to pursue justice.

Shurat HaDin is honored to represent Rebecca in her case against Suhair Nafal in court and for justice on her behalf. #RebeccasStory

For more information, visit www.israellawcenter.org  or contact [email protected].

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