Google Under Fire For ‘Bomb Gaza’ Game
Google Play have come under criticism for some of the games they are selling because they are all about bombing Gaza. The crisis in the Middle East is a hot topic right now, and opinion continues to be divided as to whom, if anyone, is in the right.
So what’s available?
First up we have Bomb Gaza. a well-reviewed app that puts you in the cockpit of an Israeli jet flying low over Gaza’s rooftops. The aim to destroy any building filled with black-clad, rocket-toting Hamas operatives, but be wary of collateral damage: When you’ve killed too many innocent civilians, a “Rage” meter tips into the red zone, and your mission comes to an end.
Next up we have Gaza Assault: Code Red. This game involves taking control of an Israeli UAV equipped with powerful weapons in an attempt to secure the region. It asks if you “have what it takes to protect your citizens.” The message of the game is that you’re fighting to bring about peace, which of course is only possible when the enemy’s territory has been disintegrated to rubble.
There’s also a steady supply of games inspired by Israel’s infamous Iron Dome air defense system. Graphics here run from the slick with a touch of realistic to the more kid friendly and cuddly approach. Each relays the same message: “Our people is in danger, trapped in their own home with wives and kids.” “Terrorists are infiltrating the city and exploding their-selves in the name of their god. You are our last hope.”
The reality of that shoot-em-up games carrying similar underlying messages are widespread. It just lacks sensitivity that many people are playing in virtual reality something that is very real elsewhere in the world, and that as they bomb an enemy building and kill civilians, somebody else in Gaza may well have lost their life for real.
There are worse games out there with much more graphic violence, but the political connotations of these should surely mean it’s not appropriate for people to be living out this particular virtual reality right now.
What do you think?
Google has removed BombGaza and Gaza Assault, but the rest remain available.