(JTA) — First, there were the celebrity tweeter and deleters.
As the Israel-Gaza conflict continues to spark a proxy war on Twitter and other social media, numerous celebrities are getting themselves caught in the crossfire.
Earlier this week, both singer Rihanna and basketball player Dwight Howard alienated partisans on both sides by tweeting the #FreePalestine hashtag — and then deleting it.
Then former Justin Bieber paramour Selena Gomez decided to get all political and post a “Pray For Gaza” photo on her Instagram feed.
Fans got upset, so she posted a photo of herself meditating on the beach with the caption: “And of course to be clear, I am not picking any sides. I am praying for peace and humanity for all!”
Now comedian Bill Maher is irking feminists (and, presumably, Hamas supporters) with the following post:
Dealing w/ Hamas is like dealing w/ a crazy woman who’s trying to kill u - u can only hold her wrists so long before you have to slap her — Bill Maher (@billmaher) July 18, 2014
Jezebel took issue with the “crazy woman” analogy: “Making a joke about hitting a woman to make a point about a country where people are being killed is just gross.”
Numerous other celebs have taken sides on social media. Actors Rob Schneider and John Cusack engaged followers in heated debates:
The ugly inhuman siege of Gaza has had it's deadliest day today. — Rob Schneider (@RobSchneider) July 21, 2014
To not be outraged at the killing of children is to risk your very soul. #Gaza— Rob Schneider (@RobSchneider) July 21, 2014
I have been to Israel and Palestine &bombing civilians is not self defense @DavePresser: not political just self defense!-Go visit” — John Cusack (@johncusack) July 19, 2014
Mia Farrow called for civility:
We can passionately protest Israel's assault upon Gaza without descending, even remotely, into the hideousness of anti semitism. — mia farrow (@MiaFarrow) July 21, 2014
And Mayim Bialik just wants her friends and family to be safe:
apparently wishing a happy sabbath to my family and friends and people in israel constitutes being a baby killer…. http://t.co/5Pai6VXDuD— Mayim Bialik (@missmayim) July 11, 2014
Actress Vanessa Williams may have taken the least political approach (although it doubtless irked those of the #FreePalestine persuasion): from July 7-July 14, she posted upbeat photos and videos from her vacation in Israel: “Jerusalem bagel. Now we’re talking ! 7 sheckels #israeltourism #amvoicesinisrael #oldcity.”
Celebrities Tweet the Middle East — With Controversial Results