As readers of HonestReporting Canada can attest, we almost never accuse news outlets and journalists of anti-Semitism. Until now.
A March 4 broadcast on CFAX1070 radio by host Ian Jessop (pictured right) repeatedly claimed that Israel is practicing “genocide” against Palestinians, in an effort to erase men, women and children off the map. Such claims are baseless and hateful. The broadcast also accused Israel of using chemical weapons and sordidly linked the situation in the Palestinian territories to the suffering that Jews endured in the concentration camps during the Holocaust that saw the murder of six million Jews.
While criticism of Israel’s policies is legitimate, comments aired on this program, such as accusations that “Israelis (are) murdering Palestinian grandmothers” and are committing “massacres, extra-judicial killings, and … criminal behaviour…” crossed the line of fair criticism to hateful discourse. These kinds of comparisons are not only ignorant and demonstrative of a deep-seated prejudice, they have been described as anti-Semitic in nature.
To listen to this program please click here or on the image below:
The segment broadcast on CFAX1070, a radio station in Victoria, British Columbia, saw Anchor Jessop use Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s historic trip to Israel and the Mideast region as an opportunity to trump up libelous claims that Jews – once the victims of the Nazis – are carrying out a genocide of Palestinians. It should be noted that comparisons of contemporary Israeli policy and actions to that of the Nazis fits the European Union’s, U.S. State Department’s, and Canada’s Ottawa Protocol’s working definition of anti-Semitism.
This program’s comparisons certainly do not hold up to scrutiny and were not deserving of airtime by this radio station. As Deborah Lipstadt, Professor of Modern Jewish and Holocaust Studies at the Institute for Jewish Studies at Emory University noted, comparing “Jews to Nazis is not only ill-informed, it demonstrates a certain prejudice – anti-Semitism – which will never help resolve the situation. Whatever one thinks of Israeli policy, to describe it as akin to the Nazi policy of murdering all of European Jewry is to engage in anti-Semitism and a form of Holocaust denial.”
As for chemical weapons, Israel’s use of white phosphorous is in accordance with the Geneva Conventions. It is used to illuminate, signal, and mark the battlefield and not as an incendiary weapon. Even the Goldstone Report accepted that white phosphorus is not illegal under international law.
Given the egregious nature of this report, we encourage our subscribers to call on the Canadian Broadcast Standards Council (CBSC), the regulatory body that oversees Canadian broadcasters, to conduct a formal investigation and to take all efforts to sanction this news outlet for its airing of anti-Semitic content on its airwaves. Please refer to the March 4 broadcast by host Ian Jessop on CFAX1070 and send letters to firstname.lastname@example.org