Earlier this week, an image of protesters in the US became viral on social media, especially in Arab countries. The alarming thing in the viral image is a banner, a protester carrying with a sentence “We are Not Arabs to kill us and keep silent”, written on it.
The image became viral on Arab social media and people started commenting and criticising the protesters and even the United States and their own governments.
A Twitter user Ambreen Rauf called this viral image is a big slap on Muslims and especially the Arab world.
Another Twitter user translated the sentence written on the viral image and wrote: “It says that we are not dumb like Arabs. Let’s prove them wrong.” Hundreds of other social media users shared this image with angry sentiments.
Facts of The Viral Image “We are not Arabs to Kill us and keep silent”
After a fact finding team searched the origin of this viral image and found that image containing the sentence “we are not Arabs to kill us and keep silent” is photoshopped and fake. See the original image, below.
The Twitter account (سعدون الدليمي) tweeted: “This is one of the American protester’s signs: (We are not Arabs to kill us and keep silent)…etc.”
The Truth: The photo is fake, it has been modified with one of the photo editing application. and the real sign says (STOP KILLING US).
After running the reverse image search on Yandex search engine, we also found that the viral image even doesn’t belong to the recent protests against the killing of George Floyd. This actual image belongs to a movement “Black Lives Matter” initiated in 2016 against the extra-judicial killing of black Americans by the police.
This was the image of Demonstrators with Black Lives Matter marched during a protest in Washington back in 2016.
Here is another image from that movement.
Later on, some social media users also responded to the viral image and shared the actual image of protesters beside the fake viral image, provoking Arab people with the sentence “we are not Arabs to kill us and keep silent.”
A Twitter user Razan Saffour wrote in her tweet: “this photoshopped image is doing rounds on arab facebook and it’s incredibly sad seeing people go to extents to exploit a struggle and make it about themselves. this isn’t about us. we are not always victim. be quiet and hold space for those who need it.
I’m aware those sharing this aren’t doing so out of malice, but that victim complexes are difficult to penetrate – esp when you feel your cause has been marginalised. you have to fight it. please check on elders who may not be in tune to concept of photoshop and make them aware.”