What can be done?
Anti-Semitism and new Medias
haGalil onLine - a German-Jewish
Online-Magazine, as a model for the successful fight against anti-Semitic
propaganda on the Internet
has been written, said and deplored for the past decade regarding the
antisemitic campaign in the "new media", which is not so new anymore.
reasons have been accounted for why not much can be done against the flood of
rassist and antisemitic hustle in the Internet. Some suggestions as to how to
restrain these have been discussed and rejected during notable conferences,
others have been pursued, some are still in the making. One is getting used to
the frequent announcements by state security services that the numbers of these
so-called "hate-sites" are frighteningly increasing.
In order to better explain the countermeasures of haGalil onLine
against the circulation of the anti-Semitic campaign, one crucial point has to
be made beforehand: anti-Semitism is the distinguishing feature of
fundamental-nationalistic ideology and as such a connection for many different
movements, such as the Pamjat in Russia to the Ku-Klux-Klan in the United
States, from Christian-Arian alliances and Islamic fundamentalists.
Anti-Semitism holds a more and more dominant and aggressive
position on the Internet-sites of all these organisations. In comparison to all
other means of propaganda, Internet-Propaganda is actually the broadest tool of
distribution, since it also reaches "unskilled/unsophisticated" recipients, who
are not to found within the common circles.
There is however one "positive
aspect" from these conclusions: the more the antisemitic-antizionistic ideas are
central in the ideological fundament of a movement, the more such ideas can be
proven wrong, if one can expose such as delusion.
Internet is international. The hate-campaign is being circulated in
many languages. Demands for a worldwide binding consent of values are
praiseworthy initiatives, but they lack the technical reality. They presume that
it should be defined and established what can be said and circulated about Jews
and Israel, this not only at the Bodensee, but also in Malaysia, Durban,
Budapest or Riad.
With regard to
the constantly developing media Internet, this discussion should not aim at what
is morally desirable, but should instead concentrate on what can be actually
done from a very technical point of view. Supposedly "patent solutions",
such as "filter software", positive and negative lists, optional cd’s, control
through provider companies etc. show only limited success.
With haGalil onLine we introduce a model, which since 1995 has
proven to be a successful method in fighting right wing extremism and
anti-Semitism on the Internet.
It is a rather simple model, which can be used in various manners
and which is possibly this successful, because it has been created for
something and not against something. We have worked much less against
the lies as for the truth.
100 : 1
for haGalil onLine
It is haGalil onLine’s major
strategy to create a massive counterbalance through the use of detailed content:
promoting truth against lies and hatred. If we use 100 of our pages against one
right-exremist page, which promotes antisemitic slander, the chances that a
student, in search of information, will end up on haGalil onLine - rather
than coming up with a Nazi-Site - are 100:1.
continuing improvement of the information offered is responsible for a high
position in search enginges, meaning that pupils, teachers, students, journalist
or other users in search of information such as "Judaism" or "Jewish holidays"
will first encounter haGalil onLine, being a serious source of
information. It is rather stunning, that this simple "fence of content" actually
functions quite effectively without any regard to all known weak spots thought
of by official sides, since the relation of 100:1 remains even without a
worldwide consent and is rather independent from filter software etc.
Our second approach uses the communicative means of an active
The best requirements for communication are encounters and authentic
information. We have known for a long time, that antisemitism and racism are
always more alive, where no or few Jews only are present. HaGalil onLine is
therefore sometimes for many teenagers in East Germany the first and only option
to establish contact with Jews.
Out of a
total of 210.000 visitors monthly, we receive on a daily basis numerours e-mails
with queries from pupils and teachers. Our discussion forums and chats offer the
possibility of communication within the reading audience. Consequently, a Nazi
dropout met the chairwomen of a Jewish community in Bavaria. Together they
created a series of lectures at schools and youth centres.
for the Juridical System
means are another effective way in the battle against Nazipropaganda. In 1997,
we introduced the first form of notification for Nazi-Sites. About 1,000 charges
are being reported yearly. In Germany itself, almost every third charge against
Nazi-Sites is the result of a notification through the haGalil onLine
only pass on the observations of our readers, but conduct our own – at times
without any specific given reason – investigations and offer the state’s
attorney juridical as well as technical support. For most parts the charges
brought up by haGalil onLine eventually led to convictions. This clearly proves
that for the fight against antisemitism no new laws are needed, but the use of
the existing laws is sufficient.
Anti-Semitism, anti-Zionism hate and hositility against democracy
on the Internet, must be battled on the Internet and through the
use of the Internet.
The efficiency of haGalil onLine proves, that the circulation of
the fundamentalistic-nationalistic hate-campaign can be immensely limited
through the proper use of the Internet.
David Gall / Transl. Noa Livne
haGalil onLine - www.hagalil.com
- P.O.Box: 900 504 - 81505 Munich - Phone.: +49 - (0) 179 - 112 15 46