Meet The Palestinians Paid To Promote Israel’s Genocide

With $30 million in covert funding, Israel manipulates Palestinian figures to support its genocidal actions in Gaza.

A common tactic used by political groups facing accusations of bias and racism is to employ voices from the communities they often demonize to present their arguments, making them more palatable. Using Palestinians to advocate for hardline Israeli policies is similar to how Black Americans and former Muslims are used to support points that would otherwise be labeled as racist or Islamophobic.

In 2022, the Israeli cabinet approved a project to inject up to $30 million into covertly funding government propaganda in the United States and other Western countries. The plan involved indirectly transferring funds to foreign organizations to spread pro-Israeli talking points without revealing their ties to the Israeli government. In November 2023, the Israeli Finance Ministry announced an additional 63 million NIS for ‘Hasbara’ [propaganda] funding.

A crucial element of effective Israeli propaganda is using Palestinian voices to appear more fair and balanced. This is especially true for prominent figures who attempt to present a “two-sides” narrative, depicting Israelis and Palestinians as suffering equally in a complex conflict. Many of these talking points are outlined in the 2009 ‘Luntz Report,’ a 112-page booklet by Republican pollster and political strategist Dr. Frank Luntz. The report serves as a guide for advocating for Israel.


Mosab Hassan Yousef

The most overtly anti-Muslim and fervently pro-Israel Palestinian voice is Mosab Hassan Yousef, who gained fame for co-writing “Son of Hamas.” In a recent video, Mosab stated, “If it comes down to 15 million Jewish innocent people and 300 million Arab clowns, I will choose the 15 million innocent people who did not start this war.” He continued, “If I have to choose between 1.6 billion muslims (sic) and a cow, I will choose a cow.”

Yousef, paraded across Western media as a self-professed Hamas expert and given softball questions by interviewers like Jordan Peterson, has become a prominent Palestinian voice during Israel’s war on Gaza. However, Yousef is unrepresentative of Palestinians. He was exposed by Israel’s Haaretz in 2010 as having worked as a spy for the Israeli Shin Bet—internal intelligence service—for over a decade, a fact detailed in his book.

The narrative promoted by his Israeli intelligence handler’ Captain Loui’ and Yousef himself suggests that the son of prominent West Bank Hamas leader Sheikh Hassan Yousef experienced a sudden change of heart in an Israeli prison and decided to become an Israeli spy to save lives. Yousef later renounced Islam, converted to Christianity, and sought asylum in the United States. There, he built a lucrative career, using his Palestinian identity to lend credibility to his often outlandish claims about Palestinians, Muslims, and the Arab world.

In 2016, Yousef claimed he was being paid by Israel, the United States, the Palestinian Authority, and Hamas simultaneously. However, many of his assertions, especially those about preventing high-profile assassination attempts, seem exaggerated. Hamas accused him of lying about his access to sensitive military information, highlighting his lack of proven ties to its military wing. Despite his close association with the Israeli government and earnings from his book and work with Shin Bet, the extent of his personal wealth remains unclear.

Despite the lack of concrete evidence that Yousef’s gay identity was used to blackmail him by Israeli intelligence, media reports suggest that he could be at risk if he returned to the West Bank. Palestinian society is largely conservative, and Israel has historically exploited this by threatening to expose LGBT Palestinians’ private lives to coerce them into collaboration.

A tragic example is Zuhair Ghalith, who was blackmailed by Israeli intelligence to spy on the Lions Den armed group using video evidence of him engaging in sexual activity with another man. After his cover was blown, Ghalith was executed for treason, having aided Israel in assassinating leading fighters in the group.

Interestingly, Mosab Yousef is not the only gay Palestinian who “switched sides,” converted to Christianity and sought asylum in the West. Jnaid Salama, from a prominent Hamas-aligned family in Nablus, changed his name to John Calvin and fled to Canada. He gained attention by “exposing” Hamas in interviews with Western media outlets like CNN. However, his stint as an anti-Palestinian voice was cut short in 2020 after he wrote $1.5 million in bad checks and tried to pay for a $10,000 nose job, leading to his arrest and charges.


Nas Daily

Nuseir Yassin, better known for his online persona ‘Nas Daily’ had taken to X [formerly Twitter] in the wake of the Hamas-led October 7 offensive against Israel, stating that “from today forward, I view myself as an ‘Israeli-Palestinian.’ Israeli first. Palestinian second”, yet despite this, he had already begun calling himself Israeli-Palestinian in 2022. Yassin also stated that “I only have one home, even if I’m not Jewish: Israel,” adding that “that’s the country I want to see continue to exist so I can exist.”

Born in Arraba, a village in northern occupied Palestine, Yassin graduated from Harvard University in 2014 with economics and computer science degrees. In 2011, he co-founded the Kindify organization with Gal Koren. Koren, who graduated from MIT and now works for Alteryx, commented that the venture aims to promote collaboration to influence situations in hostile areas like Israel and Palestine. Alteryx signed an agreement with Keyrus to encourage “collaboration and initiatives between France & Israel about innovation.” Yassin and Koren also partnered with Peregrine Badger, who now works for Cobalt Robotics, which creates security solutions using drones, robotics, and AI technology.

After working for two years in New York for Venmo, Yassin quit the industry and began posting 1-minute travel vlogs on his Facebook page, ‘Nas Daily.’ After 1,000 days of posting and building a following, he met Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg in early 2018. His account was upgraded to show status, and by September, he had garnered 8 million followers. In 2020, Yassin launched The Next Nas Daily project, which faced calls for a boycott from the Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions (BDS) movement. It was revealed that Yonatan Belik, the head of training for Nas Academy, served in the Israeli army, worked in public relations to motivate high school Israelis to serve in the military, and was involved in Palestinian-Israeli dialogue and “co-existence activities.”

@nasdaily Emotional At Home We just finished @Nas Summit in my home country. And wow. What an experience. Thank you to everyone for coming. Thank you to the speakers, to the attendees, to the sponsors (DP World and Solana) and to the Nas team for organising. See you soon in London on July 1st! #Nasdaily #NasWeekly #nassummit #isreal #telaviv #fyp ♬ original sound – Nas Daily

Additionally, Yassin’s project received support from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) New Media Academy during a time when Tel Aviv had just normalized relations with Abu Dhabi, and Emirati media was promoting the normalization drive. In March, during what the World Court ruled as a plausible genocide in Gaza, Yassin accepted an award from the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) for his “work in building bridges of understanding between Jews and Muslims.”

Videos released by “Nas Daily” avoid overt anti-Palestinian rhetoric, instead promoting a narrative of “two sides,” advocating dialogue between Israelis and Palestinians, and justifying Israel’s Apartheid system. Yassin claims to “invest in Palestine,” but this includes owning property in Rawabi, a West Bank development built partly on confiscated land from surrounding Palestinian villages. Palestinian-American tycoon Bashar Masri, whose firm purchased the land, openly boasted about spending up to $100 million annually on Israeli expertise and materials while constructing Rawabi, calling it part of an “economy for peace.”


Ahmed Fouad Al-Khatib

Teaming up with billionaire music mogul Scooter Braun to promote Sheryl Sandberg’s “Screams Before Silence,” Ahmed Fouad Al-Khatib spoke at an LA screening. He stated that, as a Gazan man, he wanted to “keep the focus on the victims of October 7, specifically the Israeli women.”

Al-Khatib is an American citizen and a Nonresident Senior Fellow at the Atlantic Council think tank. He has been prominently featured in condemning Palestinian activism, specifically referencing student protesters when expressing his horror at “the dehumanization of Israeli victims, the celebration of taking women and children as hostages, and relegating that to a mere act of resistance.”

Sandberg’s film has faced widespread condemnation for featuring confession videos from Palestinians who were tortured and interrogated by the Shin Bet, using these as evidence despite their lack of legitimacy, according to UN and human rights reports. Al-Khatib, who left Gaza at age 15 in 2005 before the Israeli siege, uses his Gazan identity in his criticism. Despite his departure from Gaza years ago, he has been vocal in presenting a narrative that aligns with the controversial content of Sandberg’s film.

Presenting himself as a liberal human rights activist, Ahmed Fouad Al-Khatib has made a name for himself through promoting Israeli talking points, attempting to stimmy and police pro-Palestinian activism in the West. On June 11, he published an article in ‘The Free Press,’ entitled “Israel Killed 31 of My Family Members in Gaza. The Pro-Palestine Movement Isn’t Helping“, in which he uses the story of his suffering family members from Gaza City to lecture activists about why they should empathize with Israelis and Zionists. He tells a story of how he wanted to condemn Hamas but was chastised for condemning rocket fire, which culminates in his dissociating with pro-Palestine groups after October 7.

Before becoming a Nonresident Senior Fellow at the Atlantic Council, Al-Khatib worked with the Washington Institute for Near East Policy (WINEP), which John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt describe in their book ‘The Israel Lobby’ as one of the lobby’s prominent propaganda fronts. Al-Khatib posts on social media about interactions with Israeli soldiers who fought in Gaza, seeking compromise in America after their return. He condemns Netanyahu but advocates engaging with Zionists for peace with Israelis. In a 2017 Haaretz piece, he recounted nearly being killed by an airstrike that “killed my close friend” yet expressed compassion for Israelis and belief in peace.

Accused of being a “grifter,” Ahmad Fouad Al-Khatib has always maintained a “two-sides” stance, advocating for peace and reconciliation amid conflict. His recent endorsement of a film exploiting forced confession tapes and citing the discredited ZAKA rescue group elevates his controversial position. He justifies this shift by saying:

I was compelled to put myself out there after I saw what was unfolding. I knew that Gaza, as we knew it, would cease to exist. I was also horrified by the dehumanization of Israeli victims, the celebration of taking women and children as hostages and relegating that to a mere act of resistance.”

Israel often promotes Palestinians who preach dialogue and peace during wartime despite the improbability of such outcomes. Another example is Izzeldin Abuelaish, a Palestinian doctor from Gaza who lost three children and a niece to Israeli airstrikes and authored the bestselling book “I Shall Not Hate: A Gaza Doctor’s Journey on the Road to Peace and Human Dignity.” He has been nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize five times and received praise from prominent Zionists. However, unlike Al-Khatib, Abuelaish has not criticized pro-Palestinian activists.

Feature photo | Illustration by MintPress News

Robert Inlakesh is a political analyst, journalist and documentary filmmaker currently based in London, UK. He has reported from and lived in the occupied Palestinian territories and hosts the show ‘Palestine Files’. Director of ‘Steal of the Century: Trump’s Palestine-Israel Catastrophe’. Follow him on Twitter @falasteen47