In the run-up to the Freedom Flotilla II's arrival in Gaza, a recurrent theme of the hasbara discourse is that the exists no humanitarian crisis in Gaza. Apparently Gaza is flowing over with plasma TVs and other luxury goods. The argumentation is a repeat of last year's diatribe's that Gazans dined in luxury restaurants and splashed in fancy amusement theme parks, emerging from an Israeli gov't PR stunt.
There's a very tragic irony in all of this. During the WWII, a similar tactic of propaganda existed. In occupied Poland (the 'General Government'), the Nazi occupation authorities issued a publication in Polish labelled Gazeta Żydowska ('Jewish Gazette'). Gazeta Żydowska repeatedly published reproductions of advertisements for luxury stores (selling expensive caviar, etc.) inside the Warsaw Ghetto.
The propaganda in this case was discreet in comparison with today's hasbara freak-outs, trying to break down the morale amongst the Jews in the Ghetto and fuel anti-Semitic feelings amongst the Polish population. The class differences inside the Ghetto were consciously highlighted by the Nazi occupation authorities in order to divide and rule.
I'm quite sure that no-one really believed that the Warsaw Ghetto was a nice place to live, just like the hasbara twitters and bloggers actually don't believe that Gaza is a tranquil luxury resorts. Everyone knows it is a lie. But it is a lie that fills a certain function, as it enables the occupation to de-humanize its victims. And de-humanization is a requirement to maintain years and years of oppression and humiliation. To break with oppression, the response is to stay human.
(source for image: http://books.google.com/books?id=-1f9IMMvTc0C&pg=PA583)
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