Activists have called on National Geographic to drop Israeli actress Gal Gadot from hosting future programmes following its recent documentary series called Impact. The series “follows the powerful stories of six women who are making an extraordinary impact on their communities around the world.”
However, the fifth episode has been criticised by activists who found it ironic and inappropriate for Gadot to be highlighting the plight of indigenous people when Israel is a settler colonial state. She served in the Israeli military and is active on social media about her pro-Zionist stance.
— #VenturaCountyActivistsforBernieSanders2020 (@penekuina2) May 27, 2021
Among those calling for Gadot to be dropped is BDS activist and national co-founder of Code Pink, Ariel Gold, who shared a petition on the website. “Gal shouldn’t be speaking on indigenous rights, as she directly took part in displacing Palestinians in Palestine. Tell National Geographic to stop working with her!”
🧵You can’t make this sh*% up! @NatGeo is having @GalGadot, self-designated defender of Israeli genocide, host a series about indigenous people being displaced. Watch the video and sign @CODEPINK’s petition pic.twitter.com/C60KCW9hD3
— Ariel Gold אריאל ✡️☮️🕊 (@ArielElyseGold) May 26, 2021
The petition has been signed by more than 4,000 people. It highlights Gadot’s time as “a combat trainer in the Israeli military and then parlaying her service into a modelling career to whitewash Israeli war crimes… [she] has directly participated in violence against indigenous people.”
The Wonder Woman actress “continues to be a vocal supporter of the Israeli military and Israel, which are continuing to ethnically cleanse Palestinians from their land. It is an insult that Gal Gadot should be hosting such a series that is supposes to ‘empower women’ when she praises the army that harms and murders Palestinian women every day.”
The Hollywood star faced a backlash on social media earlier this month after she tweeted during Israel’s bombardment of Gaza that, “Israel deserves to live as a free and safe nation… Our neighbours deserve the same.”
Denying Palestinians even a shred of compassion by refusing to acknowledge them and their suffering is a common tactic employed by their oppressors. https://t.co/6EOZSfoELE
— Tamoor Hussain (@tamoorh) May 13, 2021
Many felt the comments were insensitive for not acknowledging the Palestinians as a people, while others pointed out Gadot’s role in the military and her support for the apartheid state despite its genocidal policies in the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem.