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Why Have More Than 35 Million People Shared “All Eyes on Rafah” on Social Media?

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All Eyes on Rafah
 
“All Eyes on Rafah” is one of the biggest social media trends the world has seen. But it is not a mere trend, it is a wakeup call where humans are finally standing up for other humans. In the midst of the ongoing Israel – Palestine conflict, Rafah is a small place in southern Gaza where around 1.4 million Palestinian refugees stayed. They migrated from northern Gaza to this side in southern Gaza- Rafah, because Israel announced it to be a safe zone for them. But then on Sunday, 26th May, Israel launched both ground and aerial military operations on the refugee camps, because they intercepted rockets from Hamas. These were the refugees of a war torn land, living with below basic necessities, who were feeling to safety waving white flags. As per the reports coming out of Rafah more than 45 humans mostly children and women are dead and thousands left injured. With a backdrop of oppression since 1948 and war since last year October 7, the Israel- Palestine conflict reached its melting point with the whole world propelling ceasefire and a 2 state solution.

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World Reacts to Israel’s Attack on Rafah

The International Court of Justice ordered Israel to, “Immediately halt its military offensive, and any other action in Rafah Governorate, which may inflict on the Palestinian group in Gaza conditions of life that could bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part.”
“Outraged by the Israeli strikes that have killed many displaced persons in Rafah. These operations must stop. There are no safe areas in Rafah for Palestinian civilians.” – Emmanuel Macron, French President
“Sunday’s attack on Rafah, which came after the International Court of Justice’s order, has exposed the treacherous and bloody nature of the terror state.” – Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Turkish President
“Palestinian people are being squeezed without regard for the rights of innocent men, women and children who have nothing to do with Hamas. This can no longer be justified.” – Guido Crosetto, Italian Defence Minister
“Canada does not support an Israeli military operation in Rafah. This level of human suffering must come to an end.” – Melanie Joly, Canadian Foreign Minister
“Gaza is hell on earth. Images from last night are yet another testament to that.” UNRWA, the UN agency for Palestinian refugees

Celebrities Come out in Support

Influencers, celebrities, athletes and notable stars like Bridgeton fame Nicola Coughlan, singer-songwriter Kehlani, and leading Indian actors Alia Bhatt, Priyanka Chopra, Kareena Kapoor, Varun Dhawan, Rashmika Mandanna, Sonakshi Sinha, Samantha Ruth Prabhu, Triptii Dimri, Dia Mirza, and Richa Chadha posted the “All Eyes on Rafah” photo condemning the genocide. One of the first celebrities to share this image was cricketer Rohit Sharma’s wife Ritika Sajdeh who got trolled on social media and eventually removed the story. But post this incident the wave of millions sharing this post and urging for peace did overpower the trollers.

The AI Generated Image That Went Viral

The image that went viral on social media with more than 35 million shares in 24 hours, shows refugee tents arranged in a manner to spell out “All Eyes on Rafah”. Due to the ongoing serge in news dissemination on social media, Meta the parent company of Instagram and Facebook announced efforts to limit the spread of political speech on its platform. But when AI is used to craft content that effectively communicates messages while adhering to platform regulations, by embedding text within images, they may evade detection by keyword-based moderation that is applied to image captions. This has been one of the contributing factors for the image to go viral.
The world and its shadow on social media might look like it is divided into two groups of either being pro-Israel or pro-Palestine supporters, but millions of people from across the world are standing up and choosing peace over everything else. Every citizen has their own set of problems and atrocities to deal with because there is no such thing as a perfect nation, but there is one thing that will always be perfect and that is the sense to minimise sensationalism and help humanitarian efforts.