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Gigi Hadid posts in support of Palestinians, as Israeli government addresses her directly

State of Israel has condemned Hadid’s post about support for Palestine being mistaken as antisemitism

Meredith Clark
New York
Wednesday 18 October 2023 14:20 BST
Related: Pete Davidson reflects on father’s death in emotional SNL cold open

Gigi Hadid has been criticised by Israel after she shared a statement about the ongoing Israel-Hamas war.

The half-Palestinian supermodel, 28, took to Instagram over the weekend to share an infographic about support for Palestine being mistaken as antisemitism or support for Hamas. Hadid’s Instagram Story post, which was originally shared by @consent.wizardry, read: “There is nothing Jewish about the Israeli government’s treatment of Palestinians. Condemning the Israeli government is not antisemitic and supporting Palestinians is not supporting Hamas.”

In response, the official Instagram account for the State of Israel criticised Hadid’s statement by sharing a recreation of the infographic to its Instagram Story. However, the re-posted infographic was altered to read: “There is nothing valiant about Hamas’ massacre of Israelis. Condeming Hamas for what it is (ISIS) is not anti-Palestine and supporting Israelis in their fight against barbaric terrorists is the right thing to do.”

Alongside the graphic, the State of Israel added the caption: “@gigihadid Have you been sleeping the past week? Or are you just fine turning a blind eye to Jewish babies being butchered in their homes? Your silence has been very clear about where you stand. We see you.”

In a follow-up post, the State of Israel shared an image of what appeared to be blood on the floor next to children’s toys and clothing. Tagging Hadid, they added: “If you don’t condemn this your words mean nothing.”

The Instagram row comes one week after the mother-of-one shared an initial statement about the Israel-Hamas war. On 10 October, she condemned the “terrorising of innocent people” and wrote that her dreams for a free Palestine are not at the cost of Jewish people.

“While I have hopes and dreams for Palestinians, none of them include the harm of a Jewish person,” Hadid wrote on Instagram, adding that inflicting terror on innocent people is “not in alignment with and does not do any good for the Free Palestine movement”.

“The idea that it does has fueled a painful, decades-long cycle of back and forth retaliation (which no innocent civilian, Palestinian or Israeli deserves to be a casualty of), and helps perpetuate the false idea that being Pro-Palestine [is equal to] antisemitic,” Hadid continued.

(Instagram / State of Israel)

She acknowledged a multitude of “complex, personal, and valid feelings” while affirming that every human being is deserving of basic rights and security irrespective of “their nationality, religion, ethnicity, or where they were born”.

“I pray for the safety of innocent lives, always,” Hadid concluded her statement.

Both Gigi and her fellow supermodel sister, Bella Hadid, have been vocal about their support for the Free Palestine movement. Their father, American real-estate developer Mohamed Anwar Hadid, is a Palestinian immigrant. On 17 October, TMZ reported that the Hadid family - including their brother, Anwar Hadid, and mother Yolanda Hadid - have been “receiving death threats over their support for Palestine”.

According to the outlet, the family has received “ominous messages that make them fear for their lives” through email and social media, as well as through their private phone numbers. Sources claim that several of the family’s phone numbers were leaked online, prompting strangers to send “graphic descriptions of how they would carry out the Hadids’ executions.” They’ve reportedly changed their numbers as a result of the “ongoing threats.”

Following an attack by Palestinian militant group Hamas last week, which killed more than 1,200 Israelis, Israel has declared war against Hamas and retaliated with airstrikes in Gaza. Now, Israel has ordered an evacuation of the two million Gazans in the north to evacuate to the south in preparation for a ground invasion.

With more than 2,750 Palestinians killed since the start of the escalation, Gaza’s civilians have been stripped of food, water, and electricity as a result of a “total siege” imposed by Israel.

Hadid isn’t the only celebrity to speak out against Israel’s blockade and evacuation order of Gaza amid the Israel-Hamas war. Over the weekend, Oscar winner Riz Ahmed accused Israel of “morally indefensible war crimes” against Gazans and Palestinians.

In a statement shared on X, formerly Twitter, the 40-year-old actor and musician called for an “end to the indiscriminate bombing of Gaza’s civilians and vital infrastructure” after Israel began rolling airstrikes on the strip.

“We are told there are two sides to what is happening in Israel and Palestine. But in my heart, I know there is only one - the side of our humanity,” Ahmed wrote. “What happened in Israel last week was horrific and wrong. The pain and fear so many are feeling is deep and real. What’s happening in Gaza now, and has been happening in Palestine under the Occupation for decades, is horrific and wrong. The depth and reality of this suffering cannot be ignored.”

“If we look only in one direction, we will go even deeper into darkness,” he continued. “But that is exactly what is happening right now. We are being asked to look away while the civilians of Gaza, half of them children, are running out of time.

Ahmed encouraged people to speak up “if we are on the side of humanity”, as he called for an end to the airstrikes in Gaza and maintained that “staying silent is not an option”.

He continued: “If we are on the side of humanity we must urgently speak up to try and avert the loss of innocent life. This means calling for an end to the indiscriminate bombing of Gaza’s civilians and vital infrastructure, the denial of food, water and electricity, the forced displacement of people from their homes.”

“These are morally indefensible war crimes,” Ahmed said.

The Independent has contacted Hadid’s representatives for comment.

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