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Oprah Winfrey isn’t giving away a car to her studio audience in the video; rather, she’s making a bold, bizarre call for violence that isn’t suitable for daytime TV, or any TV for that matter.
“America, kill Muslims,” Winfrey says, before she’s replaced by Kevin Spacey’s character Congressman Francis Underwood from House of Cards, who leans into the camera and says: “As soon as I get to the presidency, I will kill Muslims and nobody can stop me.”
The dubbing is good enough, but the statements are part of a new campaign by the Israeli NGO Shurat HaDin – Israel Law Center meant to highlight the incitement on Palestinian TV as part of a criminal complaint to be filed to the International Criminal Court in The Hague.
“Of course American TV would never really call for the murder of Muslims, but Palestinian TV incites the murder of innocent Jews every single day,” an NGO representative says in the video, before presenting a series of clips from Palestinian TV calling for the murder of Jews.
Shurat HaDin said in a statement on Wednesday that it intends to collect thousands of signatures which can be submitted to the ICC as part of a criminal complaint against the heads of the Palestinian Broadcasting Corporation, Riad al-Hassan and Ahmed Assaf.
“In the recent wave of terrorist attacks, many of the terrorists launched their attacks after they watched programming which called very clearly for the killing of Jews,” Shurat HaDin said in the statement.
The organization said it sees a precedent to its criminal case in the conviction by the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda in 2003 of the operators of the Rwandan television station Radio Television Libre des Mille Collines, who were convicted of genocide, incitement to genocide and crimes against humanity for their broadcasts calling for violence against Tutsis before and during the Rwandan genocide.
Attorney Nitsana Darshan-Leitner, the founder and head of Shurat HaDin, said Wednesday that the current wave of “lone wolf attacks” is actually the product of televised propaganda, and that “when establishment television brainwashes its viewers to murder Jews, they go and carry out these deeds. Once we used to go and arrest inciters at mosques, now we just need to go arrest the heads of Palestinian broadcasting.”
While there were convictions for incitement in Rwanda, incitement cases in the ICC and elsewhere are hard to win, as the incitement must be shown to have been active, not just indirect. Many incitement cases in Rwanda were dismissed as being only distasteful hate speech.
In October, Shurat HaDin took part in filing a lawsuit in New York against Internet giant Facebook, alleging that the company is disregarding incitement and calls to murder Jews being posted by Palestinians. The lawsuit seeks an injunction requiring Facebook to block all racist incitement and calls for violence against Jews in Israel, but no damages.
The lawsuit includes a 76-page list of plaintiffs, and contends that “Facebook’s refusal to remove the flood of extremist videos, statements and cartoons being posted by Palestinians is encouraging imminent violence and fanning the flames of the terrorist attacks that have overwhelmed Israel in the past month.”
Darshan-Leitner told The Jerusalem Post on Wednesday that the campaign against Palestinian TV is meant to reach out to members of the public across the world, and also to appeal to the government of the United States, which helps fund Palestinian Authority broadcasting.