A rambling ad that ran in The New York Times on Saturday attacked Dua Lipa and Bella and Gigi Hadid for supporting Palestinians and called them antisemitic. Rabbi Shmuley Boteach, leader of the World Values Network, paid for the full-page ad, which named the women three "mega-influencers" who have "accused Israel of ethnic cleansing" and "vilified the Jewish State."
But Lipa would not stand for such slander, so she clapped back on Twitter, condemning the "false and appalling allegations." She accused the World Values Network of twisting her values: "I stand in solidarity with all oppressed people and reject all forms of racism," Lipa wrote.
The huge ad, which appeared in the newspaper's main section, was headlined: "Bella, Gigi and Dua, Hamas calls for a second Holocaust. CONDEMN THEM NOW." It featured large photos of the celebrities alongside three Hamas rockets being shot in their direction. An online version of the campaign was even more pointed and accused them of spouting "anti-Semitic bile to demonise Jewish people."
The latest uprising between Israel and Palestine started on May 10, when Hamas militants in Gaza fired rockets toward Jerusalem. It followed clashes between Palestinian protesters and Israeli police at the Al-Aqsa mosque compound, where clad in riot gear, they fired rubber bullets and stun grenades at Muslims during the holy month of Ramadan. For 11 days, the Israeli state and Hamas traded deadly rocket fire, concentrated on the Gaza Strip. The Israeli military estimated its Iron Dome missile defense system intercepted 90% of the rockets fired by Hamas. But Palestine has no such protection from Israel's heavy firepower. By the time a ceasefire was declared on Friday, more than 250 people were dead, mostly Palestinian civilians.
Amid global social justice movements, the way we talk about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict has shifted. John Oliver accused Israel of committing a "fucking war crime." Bernie Sanders described the Palestinian people as marginalized and demonized in an op-ed for The New York Times. Tons of celebrities have posted pro-Palestinian messages on social media since the latest bout of violence began, from The Weeknd and Mark Ruffalo to Idris Elba and Bella Hadid herself. There have been protests across the country against Palestinian displacement.
Many on social media criticized The New York Times for the ad: