Rihanna And Dwight Howard In A #FreePalestine Social Media Controversy

July 16, 2014

 Dwight Howard and RIhanna

With the uncertain situation in Palestine and its ongoing controversial conflict with Israel, a hashtag #FreePalestine appeared on numerous social media.

As celebrities have fans in both of these countries, it is not considered wise to share the hashtag without knowing anything about the conflict. Some celebs did it anyway and thus made some people quite upset.

The mega pop star Rihanna tweeted #FreePalestine, which she deleted a minute after posting it, but not before it was retweeted about 7 thousand times.

She probably wanted to express solidarity with Palestinians, many of whom in Gaza have been through a week of Israeli attacks which are targeting a Palestinian militant group (which had also killed dozens of civilians).

A source close to the famous singer said that she deleted it because it was never meant to be tweeted, and that she didn’t even realize it was a tweet (?!) Also, the source says that she is neither pro-Palestine nor pro-Israel, she is pro-peace.

As this is as controversial as it is, her deleting reaction is quite normal but one would think that a mainstream artist like that would know better than to wade into a conflict as complicated and contentious as it is.

This is not the first time RiRi found herself in midst of an Israeli-Palestinian situation. At a 2013 show in Tel Aviv, Israel some reporters in the audience misheard her “all I see is dollar signs” lyrics for “all I see is Palestine.”

The second celebrity that got in trouble for tweeting the hashtag is the Houston Rockets’ center and one of the most famous players in the NBA, Dwight Howard.

After the controversial hashtag which he deleted, he apologized: “Previous tweet was a mistake. I have never commented on international politics and never will. I apologize if I offended anyone with my previous tweet, it was a mistake.”