The recent decision by YouTube to take down a song focusing on the tragic consequences of the current conflict in Palestine has left many scratching their heads in bewilderment – including the song’s composer, Mick Blake.
Another Child Another War was originally inspired by an outbreak of violence in the Middle East in 2014. The song, which looks at the conflict through the eyes of a child, was very well received at the time: Mick was invited by Christy Moore to perform it at Vicar Street at a benefit concert for the children of Gaza.
Following the latest outbreak of hostilities in Palestine, Mick updated the song with more contemporary references. But when he shared the new version on YouTube, he was informed that it was being restricted and subsequently banned completely.
According to the communication Mick received from the social media giant, Another Child Another War violates YouTube’s child safety policy! The platform “does not allow content that contains mature or violent themes where there is a clear intent to target young minors and families.”
Of course, Mick’s song does not target young minors: it argues that children should not be subjected to the horrors of armed conflict. So he is baffled that the anti-war sentiment of his song could be misconstrued in such an obtuse fashion.
Describing the move as “sinister,” Mick told his local newspaper, The Donegal News, that he believes there is a growing tendency by social media companies to stifle any content considered to be critical of the Israeli Government.
For its part the Israeli Government has been running a concerted but totally disingenuous campaign to label any critics of its policies as anti-semitic. This campaign is effective in leading some social media companies to clamp down on anything that might be even remotely unacceptable to the Israeli authorities.