Google Targets Israel Yet Again

How much does Google want to support Barack Obama as he targets Israel and supports the Palestinians? This much; the Google news page, which has separate categories for “World,” U.S.,” “Science,” “Entertainment,” “Technology,” “Health,” “Sports,” and “Business,” managed to squeeze a story about the Palestinians demanding the U.S. “reassess” its relations with Israel on its top news page by listing it under “Business,” although there was virtually nothing in the article about business. Underneath that lead story were numerous stories ripping Israel. Apparently if Google can’t fit in it’s anti-Israel agenda in the normal venues, it will find a way to do so elsewhere.

Google has made its support of the Palestinians clear for years; Andre Oboler, writing for the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs in 2008, said of Google Earth:

Virtual Israel, as represented by Google Earth, is littered with orange dots, many of which claim to represent "Palestinian localities evacuated and destroyed after the 1948 Arab-Israeli war." Thus, Israel is depicted as a state born out of colonial conquest rather than the return of a people from exile. Each dot links to the "Palestine Remembered" site, where further information advancing this narrative can be obtained.

Many of the claims staked out in Google Earth present misinformation, and sites known to be ruins in 1946 are claimed to be villages destroyed in 1948. Arab villages which still exist today are listed as sites of destruction. The Google Earth initiative is not only creating a virtual Palestine, it is creating a falsification of history.

The concept of "replacement geography" replaces the historical connection of one people to the land with a connection between another people and the land. The inclusion of virtual Palestine, superimposed on Israel in the core layer of Google Earth, is an example of replacement geography advanced by technology.

Those wishing to explore Israel in Google Earth are immediately taken to a politically motivated narrative unrelated to their quest. Google should remove the narrative and treat Israel as it treats every other country on the globe. The core layer of Google Earth should be ideology free and not serve as a platform for indoctrination or a campaign to wipe Israel off the virtual map.

Google continued its pro-Palestinian anti-Israel narrative, as evidenced in 2013, when Google Earth changed the label on its home page from “Palestinian territories” to the non-existent “Palestine.” At the time, a spokesman for Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas called Google’s move a "victory for Palestine and a step toward its liberation.” Google defended its action by saying, "We consult a number of sources and authorities when naming countries," and added that it used the UN as a source.

Google also said it had no control over its autocomplete bar in 2013, which caused the word “Jews” typed into the search bar to trigger phrases such as “Jews should be wiped out,” “Jews should get over the Holocaust,” “Jews should all die,” and “Jews should apologize for killing Jesus,” to be among the most popular results.

Google said it had no oversight over the autocomplete results because they were “algorithmically determined based on a number of factors (including popularity of search terms) without any human intervention.” Yet Google acknowledged that there were cases when it could moderate the autocomplete results, stating,  “While we always strive to reflect the diversity of content on the web (some good, some objectionable), we also apply a narrow set of removal policies for pornography, violence, hate speech, and terms that are frequently used to find content that infringes copyrights.”