Israeli student group in a battle to close down a rabidly anti-Semitic channel on the Telegram social media platform.
By Yakir Benzion, United With Israel
A group of Israeli students are in a battle to get the popular social media platform Telegram to shut down a virulently anti-Semitic neo-Nazi channel that spreads hate to thousands.
The channel called White American National Socialist was set up on the Telegram network a few months ago and has almost 5,000 followers who are fed a constant stream of old style pro-Nazi Jew hatred on a the modern social media platform. The postings call for genocide and the murder of Jews, including Christmas wishes for the new year with pictures of Hitler.
The neo-Nazi hate channel even states on its home page that its goal is the “freeing the North American Continent and eventual the World from Jewish Control! Spreading the work and efforts of our people to wake up the masses!”
The hate-channel caught the attention of students at the Abba Eban Institute for International Diplomacy at the Lauder School of Government, Diplomacy and Strategy at the IDC in Herzliya. The institute runs the Act-IL app, an online community of pro-Israel activists that acts on social media platforms to fight anti-Semitism and positively influence the narrative regarding Israel.
To battle the white supremacists, Act-Il recruited thousands of its activists a few weeks ago with the aim of contacting the Telegram network and complaining – but managed to temporarily shut the channel down for only a day before it returned to operation again.
That prompted the neo-Nazis to stage their own attack on Act-Il.
“After only our partial success – we have seen that their attacks are directed against us directly and are targeting us,” ACT-IL director Tom Berman told Israel Hayom. “This is a new and complex challenge but we will not keep quiet until we solve it as well, I estimate it will be in the coming weeks.”
“There is a clear and immediate danger here,” Berman said of the neo-Nazi content. “With the help of innovative diplomacy, we will continue to push Telegram to adopt a policy against anti-Semitism and to fight against the call for genocide and the murder of Jews.”
Act-IL has to date recruited 27,000 activists and volunteers working online against anti-Semitism and for Israel from 90 countries around the world fighting anti-Semitism and anti-Israel trends on the Internet and social networks as well as in the field, such as anti-Israel school curricula.
The institute is hoping to recruit more people to download their app and join the fight against anti-Semitism and anti-Israel hatred.
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