This article was originally published on Sep. 28, 2016 on the Huffington Post.
The media rollout on August 4th was flawless, and the news story was indeed sensational. Israel claimed that millions of dollars of World Vision aid money in Gaza had been diverted to Hamas. The supposed culprit was Mohammad El Halabi, Manager of World Vision’s Gaza operations. All the major newswires carried the story, and Canadian media – including the National Post, Global News, and CTV News – joined the media wolf pack.
As Israel’s Ynet News reported the next day, the Israeli Foreign Ministry had left nothing to chance. Israeli embassies around the world were told to push the story hard to international media, opinion makers and senior officials. “Religious groups” which were likely to support World Vision were to be specifically targeted in this campaign. To facilitate the task, government ministries had prepared slick infographics, and a video about the story with ominous music.Read more