Calls For A Global Boycott As McDonald’s Gets Caught Up In The Gaza Conflict

Calls For A Global Boycott As McDonald’s Gets Caught Up In The Gaza Conflict

Burger behemoth McDonald’s is used to being caught up in the odd war or two, but usually it’s a marketing one with its fellow fast food rivals.

However, the world’s biggest fast food chain has become embroiled in the Israel-Gaza conflict after local Israeli operations announced it would be donating thousands of free meals to Israel Defence Forces (IDF) soldiers as well as hospitals.

In a series of Instagram posts in Hebrew (which have since been set to private), McDonald’s Israel said: “We intend to donate thousands of meals every day to soldiers in the field and in drafting areas, and this is beyond a discount to soldiers coming to restaurants.”

Furthermore, IDF personnel will also be offered a 50 percent discount on additional food items, it added, in a tweet which has now been deleted.

After screenshots of the posts went viral, several people in Arab and other Muslim-dominated countries raised questions about the ideological leanings of McDonald’s with #boycottMcDonald’s trending. One person going so far as to call McDonald’s the “official caterers of the genocide”!

Another added: “If McDonalds giving free meal to Israel Defence Force and not to those [affected] in GAZA then I think all Muslims around the GLOBE should boycott McDonalds.”

While others praised the decision: “Well done McDonald’s Israel,” posted one admirer.

The dispute has now spilled over to neighbouring countries with reports a McDonald’s in Sidon in Lebanon had been attacked in protest to the Israeli McDonald’s support of the IDF.

Following the violence, McDonald’s Lebanon was forced to issue a statement that read: “McDonald’s Lebanon affirms that the position of other franchisees in other countries and territories does not represent the views or positions of McDonald’s Lebanon in any way and McDonald’s Lebanon is not involved whatsoever in the actions taken in other markets outside of Lebanon. We are committed to our nation and its people with the utmost respect and solidarity.”

On Twitter/X McDonald’s Oman also issued a statement expressing support for Gaza and saying the company had donated $US100,000 dollars towards relief efforts for people in Gaza.

McDonald’s Turkey also announced “humanitarian aid” of $US1 million “to the people of Gaza who are victims of war, especially women, children and the elderly”.

McDonald’s UAE also took to social media and added that they were “deeply saddened by the events in the region” and they were donating AED 1 Million to Emirates Red Crescent, towards their “Tarahum for Gaza” campaign.

Meanwhile, McDonald’s Kuwait, announced their support for their “brothers and sisters in Palestine, especially in Gaza”. They said that they reject any and all claims questioning their Arab or our Kuwaiti identity. “What the McDonald’s operator did in Israel was an example of such individual action; it was not a global decision, nor was it approved by any of the other local operators, especially those in our region,” they said.

In Pakistan, various influential social media handles lent their voice behind #BoycottMcDonalds and local politicians made an appeal to stop purchasing from its outlets as a mark of solidarity with the people of Gaza.

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