Let me explain. Remember the other day when Gilad Schalit was finally released from Hamas custody in exchange for 1027 jailed Palestinians? Remember how when he was flown in to the air force base in Tel Aviv, after he donned his IDF uniform, he was greeted by the IDF Chief of Staff, his Dad and President Netanyahu. There was no press there. The photographs were provided by government hired photographers, and presumably the released photos were chosen by someone in the Prime Minister’s office. Or at least that’s the theory. Why? Because it seemed that a beaming Netanyahu was prominently featured in pretty much every photo. Inspired by Netanyahu’s perceived politicization of what ought to have been a private moment, Israelis created “Bibi-Bombs” :
The image of the smiling prime minister served as a perfect photo opportunity for the prime minister’s office, as it emphasized the fact that Netanyahu was the leader that decided to bring the soldier home, but it also inspired a wave of cynicism and photoshopped images that flooded Facebook… The figure of the smiling prime minister turned into a kind of â€œForrest Gump,â€ that was cut from the image and pasted into photographs of key moments in history. These images â€“ coined the “Bibi-bomb” â€“ include Maccabi Tel Avivâ€™s 1977 European Cup win, the signing of Israelâ€™s Declaration of Independence in 1948 and the signing of the peace treaty with Egypt in 1979, and the royal wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton â€“ now the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.
This Bibi Bomb thing has become so popular that Bibi himself circulated his own Bibi Bomb on his own Facebook page! Here it is:
The image includes a photo of Netanyahu addressing the 66th UN General Assembly at the UN headquarters this year, upon which lies a superimposed image of the smiling prime minister. A speech bubble emerges from Netanyahu’s smiling mouth saying, “Doogri, you made me laugh.” The word “Doogri” means “honestly”, or “straightforward”… Not only did Netanyahu’s own version of the “Bibi-bomb” play on the images circulating online, but it also expressed self-humor at his use of the word “doogri” in his UN speech. “Let’s talk “doogri”. That means straightforward, I’ll tell you my needs and concerns. You’ll tell me yours. And with God’s help, we’ll find the common ground of peace,” the prime minister had said in his speech, addressing Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.
You can see a humorous slide show of some of the more popular Bibi Bombs on Haaretz, although the images on display here, other than Bibi’s own, are original Jewlicious creations, made for your exclusive entertainment. Some might think Bibi’s entry into the realm of Bibi Bombs is undignified, conduct unbecoming for a head of state. Me? I’m all for it because usually Bibi is seen as dour and humorless. It’s good to know that he has some kind of sense of humor, or that at least he allowed his staff to convince him to make it look like he has a sense of humor. Either way, this is one Netanyahu initiative I fully support.
UPDATE: The Bibi Bomb has become an Internet Meme – see the official meme page at Know Your Meme. There’s a Tumblr page here that has nearly 200 (!!) Bibi Bombs, and on facebook there’s a Bibi Bomb gallery here and a Bibi Bombing page here.
Below are more 100% original Jewlicious Bibi Bombs!
Adding one last Bibi bomb for the GA: