An NGO’s Twitter output is a good reflection of the priorities and agendas of powerful organizations claiming to promote universal human rights. In the wake of the intense political warfare campaign in Ireland targeting Israel through antisemitic BDS (boycotts, divestment and sanctions), the following analysis of Trocaire’s Twitter feed demonstrates the efforts of this institution.
During the month of November 2018, Trocaire, the official overseas development agency of the Catholic Church of Ireland, tweeted (including retweets) 69 times on issues ranging from women’s rights, climate change, human rights in Myanmar, and World Children’s Day.
Of those 69 tweets, 12 (17.39%) of them focused exclusively on Israel, specifically on Ireland’s “Control of Economic Activity (Occupied territories)” bill, which would make it illegal for Irish citizens and residents to import or sell “settlement goods” or to provide or attempt to provide “settlement services.” On November 28, a Trocaire tweet referred to the bill as an “important vote in support of international law.”
On November 20, Trocaire also demonstrated support for Airbnb’s decision to “removing listings” in “Israeli settlements in the Occupied West Bank” by calling it “Great news.” (As was widely noted, this singling out of Israel among many countries involved in ongoing conflicts stands in contrast to the working definition of antisemitism as adopted by International Holocaust Remembrance Association, and endorsed by the European Parliament, among many others.)
On November 19, Trocaire retweeted an invitation to an event titled “What We Saw in Palestine: Why Ireland Must Act Against Injustice,” featuring Senator Frances Black and organized by Sadaka, a pro-Palestinian lobby in Ireland and among the leaders of BDS campaigns. (See below for a graph of Senator Black’s tweets.)
Trocaire’s tweets studiously omit mention of Hamas war crimes. Following an attack of 400 rockets and missiles from Gaza against Israeli population centers on November 13, causing one death and more than 70 injured, the organization focused all of its attention on Gaza’s “humanitarian crisis.”
The chart below illustrates Trocaire’s disproportionate focus on Israel:
Appendix 1: Senator Francis Black’s November 2018 Tweets
In November 2018, Senator Black tweeted 141 tweets and retweets, of which 86 targeted Israel and promoted the Palestinian cause.