“Hoax!” Palestinian Digitality and Israeli Anxiety in the Occupied West Bank
This essay focuses on the right-wing Israeli reckoning with the visual archive of Palestinian injury at Israeli state or settler hands – a reckoning that occurs through the discourse of “fake news,” or the charge that such images are fraudulent or manipulated in some regard to produce the damning portrait of Israel. I will argue that the fraudulence charge is marshalled as a solution to the viral visibility of Israeli state violence, laboring to bring these damning images back in line with dominant Israeli ideology by shifting the narrative from Palestinian injury to Israeli victimhood. The story of the “fake” image of Palestinian injury endeavors strip the visual field of its Israeli perpetrators and Palestinian victims, thereby exonerating the state. Or such is the fantasy.