Of Israel, Passover, Palestine, Apartheid and PR

Why do we call Israeli Arabs "Palestinians"?

By Joel Leyden
Israel News Agency

Jerusalem, Israel --- April 12, 2012 .... It is often said that we sometimes can't see the forest for the trees. So it goes for Israel's PR efforts.

Israel suffers everyday. We suffer from a lack of global understanding of the true facts. And this suffering transcends into threats to our very physical survival. The war of words is overlooked by Israel and the Jewish community for the war of bullets.

Iran, Syria, Saudi Arabia, Hamas and Islamic Jihad backed Palestine (there is no entity as Palestine - but it is carved here for purposes of SEO) have millions of dollars to retain the best, most creative PR and advertising agencies. And it shows.

Their marketing events such as the "Flotilla", "Global March on Jerusalem" the "Apartheid Wall" and the upcoming "Welcome to Palestine Flytilla" PR campaigns are right on target.

So where does Israel miss the Flotilla boat?

First, the Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs has very little money.
They are lucky to pay their rent in Jerusalem and in embassies around the world. Recently, diplomats from the MFA went on strike just so that they could feed their children. There is no money for PR. They have a meager training budget and that's it. They rely on non-profit and volunteer organizations such as The Israel Project, CAMERA, MEMRI - The Middle East Media Research Institute and HonestReporting.com all of which do a fine and noble job. We can't forget support from the ADL, AJC and the WZO.

But even they suffer from being overwhelmed and under staffed by anti-Israel and anti-Semitic campaigns coming from all directions.
They are putting out fires. Little time to create potent strategies and powerful campaigns let alone able to look at the big picture.

Case in point is Passover.

As Jews we all celebrate it. We honor it. We even eat matzah and gefilte fish.
But we totally neglect it in addressing Israel's existence today. Yes, we talk among ourselves about being freed from slavery in Egypt but we totally neglect getting out the Passover branding and messaging for Israel's right to exist today!

When Iran and the Arab world talk about "occupation" - we must ask ourselves and those around us, what occupation?

Did we not reenter Israel thousands of years ago from Egypt?
Where were the Palestinians then? Did we occupy their land? Did we rape their women and steal their houmous and camels?

Israel should give Republican presidential candidate Newt Gingrich citizenship and make him a Deputy Foreign Minister. He has done more to address the real status of Palestinians than anyone else since 1964, calling them an "invented" people.

When the pro-Hamas Palestinians say "occupation" we need to say "Passover".
When the pro-Hezbollah Palestinians say Jerusalem, we need to say "Passover".
When US President Barack Obama refuses to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel (that is when he is not campaigning for President) we need to say "Passover".

Passover commemorates the story of the Exodus, in which the ancient Israelites were freed from slavery in Egypt. This was in 1446 B.C. In Jewish tradition, Jewish ancestry is traced to the Biblical patriarchs Abraham, Isaac and Jacob in the second millennium BCE.

The Palestinians did not build Jerusalem. Jews did!

King David of Israel first established Jerusalem as the capital of the united Kingdom of Israel in c.1000 BCE, and his son Solomon commissioned the building of the First Temple in the city. Now let's go fast forward. Yasser Arafat invented a nation called Palestine in 1964. There were no Palestinians - these were Arabs who lived in the biblical, historical land of Israel who chose war to exterminate Israel rather than having their own state in 1948.

But you see what we are doing? We can't see the forest for the trees as we deal with all of these dry and boring dates.

We need simple, exciting sound bytes.

"Israel wants peace - not propaganda and missiles."

Solution: display advertising on buses and subways, from Moscow, Paris, Geneva and London to Washington, Tokyo, New York and Toronto. Banner ads on Facebook and Google all asking: "Israel. What occupation?"

Or "Are The Palestinians An Invented People?"

Add some small print with details. "Jews in Israel over 5,772 years. Palestinians: a people created in 1964."

"Israel wants peace - not propaganda and missiles."

As for all other issues such as Apartheid, IDF security checkpoints and the IDF handing out poisonous candy to Arab babies - all secondary.
Yes, Israel wants peace. This tiny democracy that gave away Gaza for what? More missiles and lethal rhetoric.

The Arab agenda is simple. They deflect away from the lack of employment and human rights in their own nations and use Israel as a media diversion. Do they care about Arabs living in Israel - heck no. They push for Israel's total destruction. Not because they see Israel as a threat, but because they see democracy as a threat.

We need to have 5 questions on Passover. The fifth being: "how long has Israel been in existence and why do we call Arabs - Palestinians?

We need to ask this question to journalists using inexpensive but far reaching social media during, before and after Passover.

Pass the matzah and wine.

The author has practiced professional PR and public affairs for over 25 years. He has served as a senior media consultant to the Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the IDF. He can be found at JewishPr.co, DigitalPrConsultant.com, ReputationManagementPr.com and JoelLeyden.com

The above news content was edited and SEO optimized in Israel by the Leyden Digital Media Group - Israel, New York.

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