Gal Gadot: Wonder Woman actress receives backlash over Middle East tweet

Gal Gadot

Reuters

Wonder Woman star Gal Gadot has received a backlash online over her tweet about the escalation of violence in Israel and Gaza.

The Israeli actress and former Miss Israel posted: “Israel deserves to live as a free and safe nation,” adding: “Our neighbours deserve the same.”

The comments attracted thousands of replies – now switched off – leading to her name trending on Twitter.

In her youth, Gadot completed two years of mandatory military service.

“My heart breaks,” the 36-year-old posted online.

“My country is at war. I worry for my family, my friends. I worry for my people. This is a vicious cycle that has been going on for far too long.

“I pray for the victims and their families. I pray for this unimaginable hostility to end, I pray for our leaders to find the solution so we could live side by side in peace. I pray for better days.”

While some high-profile people, including US politician Ted Cruz praised Gadot for her remarks, many others reacted angrily, disagreeing with her stance on the situation in the Middle East.

In 2019, Gadot has become embroiled in a row with Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu over the status of the country’s Arab minority.

“Love your neighbour as yourself,” the Israeli actress said, amid wrangling over the role of Israeli Arab parties in upcoming polls.

Mr Netanyahu caused a stir when he said Israel “was not a state of all its citizens”, referring to Arabs who made up 20% of its population at the time.

He cited a “nation-state” law.

And four years ago, Lebanon banned Wonder Woman from cinemas, because the title character was played by an Israeli actress.

The Lebanese interior ministry banned the film hours before its release, on a recommendation from the General Security directorate, reports said.

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What is going on between Israel and the Palestinians?

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This is not the first time Gadot has come in for criticism for her activity online.

In March 2020, she and her celebrity friends – including Will Ferrell, Amy Adams, Kristen Wiig, Sia and Cara Delevingne – rather misjudged the public mood during the first coronavirus lockdown by offering up a collective cover of John Lennon’s Imagine.

The rich and famous collaborators were mocked mercilessly online by people questioning their choice of song, which imagines a utopia with “no possessions”.

‘Human tragedy’

Aside from Gadot, model Bella Hadid has also offered her thoughts on the situation in the Middle East, via Instagram.

“Future generations will look back in disbelief and wonder how we allowed the Palestinian suffering to continue for so long,” said Hadid, whose father is Palestinian.

“A human tragedy unfolding right in front of our eyes.

“Politicians stutter neutral words in fear of being reprimanded, whilst the world remains silent to avoid offending the wrong people.”

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