Israeli-push behind effort to ban Tiktok in the United States
Social media has an enormous influence on Americans but only the social media that offends Israel is targeted for censorship and restrictions, reflecting their restrictive and repressive society. While Facebook and other Social media have come around to support Israel’s demands to crackdown on criticism of its government by Palestinian and Arab activists, Tiktok has become a battlefield and the pro-Israel movement is behind the recent actions by the U.S. Congress to exert pressure on the social media’s Chinese based owners, ByteDance. It’s all about Israel wanting to silence its critics and not about free speech or even safety
By Ray Hanania
Several U.S. elected officials are behind a push to restrict and limit the use of the popular social media site Tiktok in America.
The assertions is that Tiktok, which is owned by ByteDance, a company based in China, is tied to the Chinese Communist Party and may be stealing sensitive information that could undermine the United States government.
The sponsors of legislation that would prohibit employees of the Federal Government from using Tiktok, and ban Tiktok from popular App sites run by Facebook and Google, assert that Tiktok poses a “potential national security threat,” but they don’t offer any proof or facts to back up their allegations.
But when has the U.S. Congress ever been required to back up their assertions with facts? More importantly, since when has the U.S. Congress ever cared about the growing influence China has in America?
During the past two decades, China has increased its investments and purchases in America tenfold, rising from more than $11 billion in 2000 to $118 billion last year. The amount keeps increasing.
No one in Congress cares about the Communist Nation’s investment in America. Nor do they care about the growing number of industries that are expanding operations in China to exploit the cheap labor, such as Apple, Microsoft, Amazon, Facebook and IBM.
So, what is the real impetus behind the targeted focus against Tiktok? And why is Tiktok more of a threat than the dozens of American companies who build products in China for pennies on the dollar and deny American taxpayers jobs right here in America?
The answer, many suspect, is Israel, which has more influence over the U.S. Congress than any other foreign country.
Tiktok is the fastest growing social media in America. It allows users to scroll through short videos of between a few seconds and up to 3 minutes that are produced by the users.
Unlike Facebook and Google, which severely restrict users based on their political views — tending to censor conservative views far more than those of liberals — Tiktok only bans videos that touch on core threats such as explicit sex, promotion of violence, or promotion of drug use.
What you do find on Tiktok are hundreds of millions of users who are shifting away from Facebook, which is these days is lame and driven by a far-Left political bias, to the freedom that Tiktok offers its users.
One of those freedoms is to not censor pro-Palestinian posters the way Facebook excessively censors pro-Palestinian posters who criticize Israel, which is a foreign country in America but is treated like it is America’s 51st State.
Israel gets more Foreign aid from Congress than all but one foreign country, Afghanistan. And laws have been passed to protect Israel from boycotts which are often encouraged against other foreign countries.
The latest push to censor Tiktok is being driven by pro-Israel activists who are shocked by the display of videos that show Israeli soldiers brutalizing Palestinian men, women and children, and challenging Israel’s propaganda that it seeks peace.
In fact, pro-Israel groups have launched a public relations campaign to force Tiktok to censor pro-Palestinian users asserting posts critical of Israel’s government policies are “anti-Semitic.”
What may rile the pro-Israel Tiktok users most is that many Israeli Jews are on the social media slamming Israel’s government policies. Dozens of former members of the Israel Defense Forces and Israeli Jews who served during the 1948 war are finally confessing that they were forced to kill Palestinians in cities like Deir Yassin and most recently Tantura.
Video revelations by the former Israeli soldiers that they engaged in war crimes and were encouraged by superiors to murder are shocking and challenge the core principles that are the foundation of Israel’s propaganda that has most of American public opinion in a biased headlock.
People can easily watch videos of the former soldiers confessing to have been ordered to murder men, women and children who had no weapons simply to force them to flee into refugee status.
It is having a profound impact in changing the dynamics of the conflict as seen through American eyes in which the poor little nation of Israel is being attacked and assaulted by the “lying Arab World” and its Palestinian brethren who “don’t exist.”
Israel has always been afraid of free speech and has spent hundreds of millions of dollars to influence the mainstream American news media to ignore or marginalize Palestinian critics, and to support their assertions that criticism of Israel is “anti-Semitism.”
American journalists and opinion writers constantly conflate acts of true anti-Semitism — Jew hatred, vandalism of Jewish Synagogues and attacks targeting American Jews — with criticism of Israel’s government — accusations of discrimination against non-Jews, land theft from non-Jews, and soldiers engaging in violence against Palestinian civilians — whom Israel accuses of terrorism but often never presents factual evidence in a court of law to back up their claims.
It’s easy to publish an article in the mainstream American news media defending Israel from criticism. It is very difficult to publish an article in the mainstream American news media exposing Israel’s violence against Palestinian civilians.
In fact, 26 American states have passed laws to punish Americans who criticize and support a boycott of Israel’s government policies.
There certainly is some anti-Semitism on Tiktok, just as there is certainly anti-Semitism on Facebook and other social media. But, there is just as much Islamophobia and anti-Palestinian hate on Tiktok and other social media including on Facebook, much of it from pro-Israel activists. That’s not a problem the politicians want to address, however.
The targeted attack on Tiktok is just another assault on free speech. It has nothing to do with the incredulous assertion that China is using the social media platform to steal national security. The driving force is protecting Israel from criticism.
(Ray Hanania is an award winning former Chicago City Hall reporter. A political analyst and CEO of Urban Strategies Group, Hanania’s opinion columns on mainstream issues are published in the Southwest News Newspaper Group in the Des Plaines Valley News, Southwest News-Herald, The Regional News, The Reporter Newspapers. His Middle East columns are published in the Arab News. For more information on Ray Hanania visit www.Hanania.com or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.)
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