Canada’s national broadcaster (CBC) at its worst!

LATEST UPDATE! The Jerusalem Post reports: “Israel’s role was ‘indispensable’ in saving the lives of the ‘White Helmet’ rescue workers and their families, Canada’s Deputy Head of Mission Anthony Hinton told The Jerusalem Post on Wednesday. ‘From Canada’s perspective, Israel’s role was indispensable… there was no way to save these Syrians without Israel’s coordination, collaboration and leadership,’ Hinton, who was acting ambassador during the operation, said in a telephone interview. ‘The IDF were the ones who made it happen on the ground,’ he stressed.”

From the publisher of jewishinfoNews. The following article was originally published by Honest Reporting Canada and republished with permission by jewishinfoNews on July 25, 2018.

CBC’s Appalling Coverage of Israel’s Daring Rescue of Syria’s White Helmets

Though Israel won widespread praise for its leading role and brave humanitarian efforts in the daring rescue of hundreds of individuals associated with Syria’s White Helmets, our public broadcaster, the CBC, produced truly appalling coverage that maligned Israel’s efforts.

Amazingly, though media outlets wide and far prominently acknowledged Israel’s integral role in the dangerous rescue mission, a CBCNews.ca report on July 22 failed to even mention Israel’s efforts at all. A report by senior defence reporter Murray Brewster entitled:Canada to accept up to 250 Syrian White Helmet volunteers, family after dramatic escape” originally only detailed how “Several hundred people — volunteers and their families — belonging to the rescue organization known as the White Helmets were extracted late Saturday from the southwestern portion of the war-torn country that’s being overrun by forces loyal to leader Bashar al-Assad.”

The story lead by mentioning (emphasis added): “Canada is among three Western nations that will accept hundreds of volunteer emergency workers plucked from Syria under the cover of darkness in a dramatic international rescue, CBC News has learned.” Untold in the entire article was that it was Israel who evacuated 400 White Helmets rescuers and their families from Syria to Jordan overnight at the request of the United States, Canada and European countries, as noted by Al Jazeera for example.

In a complaint sent by HRC to senior CBC Editors at 8:11am on Sunday, July 22, we asked why this vital information was not mentioned in Mr. Brewster’s report. After all, Mr. Brewster had mentioned the following other countries who were involved in the operation when saying (emphasis added): “The volunteers were spirited out of Syria in a highly secret international operation that involved the U.K., France, Germany, the Netherlands and Canada, multiple sources told CBC News. Canada was not involved militarily in the evacuation, ​but ​helped lead the effort to bring them out of Syria and ​into Jordan.”

Again, why did this CBCNews.ca report by Mr. Brewster not mention that it was Israel who extracted them? We called on CBC to take immediate corrective action. Subsequent to our complaint, the CBC “updated” its report to acknowledge Israel’s integral role. The report now states in the lead: “Canada is among three Western nations that will take in nearly a hundred volunteer emergency workers and their families that Israeli forces plucked from Syria under the cover of darkness in a dramatic international rescue, CBC News has learned.”

The article continued by mentioning that:

The Israeli military said Sunday it was responsible for rescuing members of the Syrian volunteer organization from the volatile frontier area and evacuated them to a third country — the first such Israeli intervention in Syria’s lengthy civil war. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu issued a statement on Sunday saying the rescue came about as a result of recent requests by U.S. President Donald Trump, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau ‘and others.”These are people who have saved lives and whose lives were in danger,’ Netanyahu said of the White Helmets. ‘Therefore, I approved their passage through Israel to additional countries as an important humanitarian gesture.’”

As well, the following tweet from the Israel Defense Forces was published by the CBC:Nevertheless, the question that remains to be answered by the CBC is why wasn’t this important information included in its original reporting? We await the CBC’s official response to our complaint. CBC’s biased reporting about Israel’s rescue efforts of the White Helmets continued on July 23 with a report by Susan Ormiston on CBC The National. In a report about how the White Helmets became targets, Ms Ormiston stated the following (emphasis added):

Last week, as the war crept closer to Israel’s border with Syria, Prime Minister Netanyahu was asked to help the White Helmets out. Today he said the lives of the people who saved others are in danger. But his opponents accused him of trying to deflect criticism away from the escalating campaign against Gaza.”

https://www.cbc.ca/i/caffeine/syndicate/?mediaId=1283262019847 

CBC viewers were then shown footage of apparent Israeli air strikes on Gaza on July 18

Ms Ormiston’s stating that Israel undertook this daring and dangerous humanitarian operation as essentially a smokescreen to deflect attention and criticism away from its military efforts in Gaza, is unfounded and was a highly editorialized and inflammatory statement, instead of being neutral and objective. There was no place for this type of statement to be present in a report of this nature, irrespective of how this may have been phrased using indirect attribution (“his opponents accused him…”.

Furthermore, Israel is not carrying out a “campaign against Gaza”, it’s carrying out defensive operations against Hamas terrorists who have launched hundreds of rockets and incendiary devices across the border. We told the CBC in a complaint filed on July 24, that we strongly feel that immediate corrective action must be undertaken by the CBC to remedy this serious situation.

We await the CBC’s official response to our complaint.

It doesn’t end there though. In an interview broadcast on CBC Radio’s The Current on July 24 with guest host Megan Williams, CBC interviewed Bessma Momani, Senior Fellow at the Centre for International Governance Innovation at the University of Waterloo, who outrageously claimed that Israel was attempting to “overplay” its role in the rescue efforts, brag, and was actually putting the White Helmets at risk.

To listen to the interview click here and go to the 49: 00-minute mark. Here’s a short transcript (emphasis added):

Momani: “But I would also point out that the Israelis, particularly Prime Minister Netanyahu and the Israeli Army have tried to overplay, frankly, their involvement making this very much about a rescue that they committed and I would point out that that actually really harms the remaining White Helmets inside the country. So It’s really disturbing to see the Israelis take this line because it really just endangers them.”

CBC Anchor Williams: “How does it endanger them?”

Momani: “Well, quite frankly, it sort of feeds into the narrative of both the Syrians and Russian propaganda that somehow the White Helmets are western agents. So the remaining ones, we know that not all 800 that were sort of initially promised to come through were able to make the journey some of them got held back by roadblocks and fighting, now they’re in great peril and I think that’s really the unintended consequence of Netanyahu trying to get bragging rights out of this.”

Momani made these statements without any challenge from CBC guest Anchor Megan Williams. Indeed, Momani made similar comments on CTV News on July 22 where she felt it necessary to claim that Israel doesn’t deserve credit and that it did not have a “benevolent” policy. On Twitter she wrote:

Bessma Momani

@b_momani

This is key and to give Israel credit will only add to government and Russia propaganda that White Helmets are western agents. Media folks please don’t buy in to Netanyahu’s line either. Facts are key.

Elizabeth Tsurkov

@Elizrael

A lot of misreporting about the rescue of the @SyriaCivilDef & relatives from southern Syria tonight. The number of people rescued that’s being reported is incorrect. More importantly, this is an operation involving multiple countries working together. Israel is merely a conduit.

Momani’s interview on CTV News can be seen here:

https://webapps.9c9media.com/vidi-player/1.5.1/share/iframe.html?currentId=1444140&config=ctvnews/share.json&kruxId=ImoeZsch&cid

=%5B%7B%22contentId%22%3A1444140%2C%22ad%22%3A%7B%22adsite

%22%3A%22ctv.ctvnews%22%2C%22adzone%22%3A%22embed%22%7D%7D%5D

While Ms. Momani is entitled to her own opinions, it’s noteworthy to mention that it was Israel who “spirited” the White Helmets into the Israeli-controlled Golan Heights, before being moved to a camp in neighbouring Jordan. The Globe and Mail reported that: “The Israel Defence Forces (IDF) led the rescue effort, which was done at the request of Canada, Britain and Germany, who all committed to resettling evacuees. The operation was also supported by the United States. This extraordinary mission came together to save the White Helmets and their families, years after these medical teams first started working to save civilian lives in rebel-held areas amid the Syrian civil war.” Meanwhile, the Canadian Press and the Toronto Star wrote that the “dramatic rescue” was “orchestrated by the Israeli military and personally encouraged by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.”

TAKE ACTION NOW: As we’ve chronicled, CBC’s coverage on its website, radio and tv which maligned Israel’s daring rescue efforts of Syria’s White Helmets is deserving of your condemnation. We ask that all HonestReporting Canada subscribers file complaints, just as we’ve done already, with CBC Editor-in-Chief Jennifer McGuire. Please send emails as soon as possible to: Jennifer.McGuire@cbc.ca.

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Rwanda: 7 April 2017. Never Again!

Four words:

Duhore Tuzilikana Kirazira Kwibagirwa!

We Must Never Forget!

Today, 7 April 2017 is the 23rd Commemoration of the Genocide Against the Tutsi. 

by Alan Simons

In a few weeks time, on 23 April at sundown, Jews throughout the world observe Yom HaShoah, Holocaust Memorial Day. It is the day where we pay tribute to all the victims of the Holocaust and ghetto uprisings. Inaugurated 64 years ago we like you, have no intention of forgetting our loved ones. Therefore, as a Jew, my message to you is not from a stranger, but from a brother and partner. For in commemorating the 23rd anniversary of the 1994 genocide against Tutsi, your loss, is also my loss.

However, I ask myself what right do I have to speak of such experiences of genocide?

Who am I to speak of such unthinkable acts of violence and cruelty, unequaled in modern history?

I never witnessed killings, or had my life threatened. I never lost immediate family members, nor witnessed rape or sexual mutilation, or had to hide under corpses.

Rwanda April 7 2017 bSo, what authority gives me the right to speak about Rwanda’s genocide, to talk about your families and friends who perhaps survived these 23 years, and hopefully, I repeat hopefully, have been able to overcome their traumatic experiences and find optimism in the future, as well as speak of those who were murdered?

Well, a few years ago President Kagame of Rwanda, photographed above, said: “The world chose to watch as one million were being slaughtered. Victims were turned into perpetrators and justice was turned into a political tool. The world has shown us that we cannot afford not to fight. Do not be afraid to stand up for truth, justice and for who we are. The only way to live in this world is to stand up for ourselves, stay true to who we are and define our own destiny.”

Perhaps, more than anything, it is in these words that binds Jews and Rwandans together in a mutual understanding of what intolerance and hate is all about in our society today. And, we have only to look at the past few weeks of what happened in London, a few hours ago in Stockholm, as well as the gassing earlier this week of children and adults in Syria, to appreciate the scope and threat of the world we continue to live in.

Hate is hate, irrespective of one’s religion, colour or nationality.

Even now in Canada there are deniers of both the Rwandan genocide and the Holocaust who continue to thrust their sick fermented ideas into the international arena. As Hitler remains centre stage to many antisemites, it was only a couple of months ago that Rwanda’s deniers actually competed to question who was to blame for the 1994 killings. 

It’s been said that sadness is but a wall between two gardens. May all of those who perished in the genocide be remembered for their beauty and fragrance that grace our gardens.

My dear Rwandan brothers and sisters, finding an appropriate way of honouring and remembering the dead is one of the goals of the mourning process. For, as Elie Wiesel the Nobel Laureate and Holocaust survivor said, “To forget the dead would be akin to killing them a second time.”

(Photo credits: From Paul Kagame’s Post, in Timeline Photos)

 

A message from Canada to our brothers and sisters in France

We are one JIN November 14 2015

Solidarity demands. Remember, we are one people.

La solidarité exige. Rappelez-vous, nous sommes un seul peuple. Le terrorisme est une menace mondiale qui exige une réponse mondiale et complète.

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