Facebook in the Middle East


To day, expecting the November 2007 Israel Palestine talks in Annapolis, puts the Facebook ‘Palestine’ debate of whether or not Palestine constitutes a country, in a bizzare anachronism, Palestine is an almost-State, if not recognize by all de jure, she  is recognize by all de facto, including Israel.

Here are experts of the debate reported by ”The Jerusalem Post’. Oct 9, 2007 21:58 | Updated Oct 10, 2007 8:45

” War in the Middle East is being waged not only on the ground, but also in cyberspace…

…Facebook has aroused international controversy over the issue of whether or not Palestine constitutes a country…

…The Israeli-Palestinian conflict has flared up on the social networking. Facebook, with over 12,000 users participating in the “Palestine” network and 65,000 users engaged in the Israel network as of Tuesday. Both networks are open to users worldwide….

…”Palestine” appeared on the original list of countries from which users could choose when registering for the site, until Facebook “mysteriously took it away” in October 2006. Members of the “Palestine” network were outraged….

…One Palestine network member wrote to Facebook, asking what network she should join now that Palestine was no longer an option, and was told to “join the West Bank and Gaza section,” according to the “Official Petition” page….

…In response to the Palestine option’s disappearance and Facebook’s alternative suggestion, an official petition was started by Ronald Habash, a University of Illinois student and member of the Palestine network, to have Palestine reinstated as a country….

….Other groups appeared, following in the footsteps of “Official Petition”: Saif Qadoumi of the United Arab Emirates started “If Palestine is removed from Facebook … I’m closing my account,” and over 16,000 users are members of “Against delisting Palestine from Facebook.”… …Facebook responded to pressure from Palestinian petitions and letters, and re-added Palestine to the list of countries in early 2007. No press release was ever issued by Facebook regarding either the elimination or the reinstatement of Palestine – an atypical decision by Zuckerberg and his team, who post roughly once a week on their blog of happenings and additions to the site, regularly update the site’s “What’s new” section and give public access to all press releases about Facebook”,….. see full article .

Facebook applied  the conventional rules for defining what is a country (state?), but in the Middle East nothing is conventional and Facebook members proved it once again. 



Is Palestine a state or not?  Both in law and in fact, Palestine is a nation, but she is not yet a state, see here .

State of Palestine, Wikipedia (updated 10 October 2007).

A comment of a Palestnian blogger in Hebron, see here

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