Her words received a great deal of attention. The Pnai Plus website may have indulged in a bit of hyperbole when it headlined an article about the controversy, “‘Wonder Woman wake up!’ How Gal Gadot became a public enemy,” but many did criticize the superstar.
In a typical tweet, a Twitter user called Luna retweeted a picture advertising Gadot’s latest movie, Wonder Woman 1984, and wrote above it: “don’t watch this. DO NOT support gal gadot. she has openly and directly been supporting the genocide in palestine. y’all didn’t listen to us before, PLEASE listen now.”
Many comments were positive, however. US Senator Ted Cruz praised her, tweeting, “God bless @GalGadot.” A Twitter used named Greg Price wrote, “The internet is angry at Gal Gadot because she’s an IDF veteran, which all Israelis are required to serve in for at least two years, and had the audacity to share a heartwarming message for peace in the conflict.
Although the hashtags #BoycottGalGadot and #BoycottWonderWoman have been trending, it is not likely that Gadot will suffer for her choice to speak out. In fact, her Instagram following actually increased after her statement, from 53.3 to 53.4 million followers. Her films have already been officially banned in much of the Arab world, although unofficially, they are streamed by many Arabs.
Gadot usually steers clear of politics, although in 2019, she did post, ”Love your neighbor as yourself,” after Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Israel was not “a state of all its citizens.” In 2020, she was the subject of ridicule after she posted an out-of-tune celebrity singalong of “Imagine,” at the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic.
— Israel ישראל (@Israel) May 16, 2021
Singer Dua Lipa, who is reportedly dating the Hadids’ brother, Anwar, posted similar messages. The musician, The Weeknd, posted a message to “support Jerusalem” as a nod to the families in Sheikh Jarrah.
One person who got angry at both the Hadid sisters and Gadot was Yair Netanyahu, the prime minister’s son, who tweeted, “The models of Palestinian descent Gigi and Bella Hadid, with millions of followers, have been conducting antisemitic propaganda against Israel 24/7 since the beginning of the mess. The only Israeli figure, with the same number of followers, and with the power of an international celeb, who can give them a fight in publicity is Gal Gadot. She chose to write a neutral post as if she was from Switzerland.”
Celebrities who actually did support the Palestinians include actor Mark Ruffalo, musician Roger Waters and actress Lena Headey.
A number of talk-show hosts weighed in, most recently John Oliver, who emphasized the disproportionate nature of the casualty figures on both sides, as did Trevor Noah on the Daily Show earlier in the week. Oliver said on his show, Last Week Tonight, “Look, there is a real tendency, particularly in America, to both-sides this situation. And I am not saying that there aren’t some areas where that’s warranted, but it’s important to recognize there are also areas where it’s simply not. Both sides are firing rockets, but one side has one of the most advanced militaries in the world. Both sides are suffering heartbreaking casualties, but one side is suffering them exponentially. . . . if you believe Israel’s actions are warranted and proportionate this week, you’re welcome to try and make that argument.”
While there is talk of an imminent ceasefire, the social-media fight will likely continue.
The writer’s novel, If I Could Tell You, is available at https://amzn.to/33NwgxG