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Myth:

Israel kill Palestinians in order to harvest their organs

Source:

IDSF

Fact:

One of the most prevailing myths about Jews from which the term of “blood libel” originated from was the belief the Jews kill Chistian children to harvest their blood. The modern version of this antisemitic canard is a conspiracy theory that is rampant in the Arab world which alleges that Israel kill Palestinians in order to harvest their organs. This myth was even shared on Instagram by super model Gigi Hadid.


Origins of the Myth


The myth started in 2009 when a Swedish tabloid published a piece implying that the IDF kills Palestinians in order to provide organ donations to hospitals and called for further investigations into the claims. This article used the tactic of “just asking” questions to raise doubt and promote a conspiracy theory while protecting itself by claiming that it never asserted anything, only called to investigate certain claims.


What happened in reality was that in the 1990s the head of Israel’s Abu Kabir Forensic institute took organs from bodies (Israeli, foreign workers and civilians) without the proper legal framework of obtaining a proper consent from the families. The institute claimed that it was working according to the guidelines that existed at the time which included many loopholes and did not standardize the practice. Dr. Yehuda Hiss, the Institute’s chief pathologist was eventually removed from his position in 2012.   


In a state inquiry report, Israeli authorities found “no evidence that Hiss targeted Palestinians; rather, he seemed to view every human body that ended up in his morgue, whether Israeli or Palestinian, as fair game for organ harvesting. The families of dead Israeli soldiers were among those who complained about Hiss’s conduct.” 


Later, Israeli guidelines for obtaining organs from deceased individuals have been clarified.  


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