UPDATE: May 21, 2018. CBC As It Happens and Anchor Carol Off appear to have tried to walk back their controversial anti-Israel programming by featuring a segment on May 18 with Hamas member Ahmed Yousef. Read our full alert here.
UPDATE: May 18, 2018: (12:02pm EST). True to form, two days after conducting a hostile and combative interview with former Israeli Ambassador to the U.S. Michael, Oren, CBC As It Happens and Anchor Carol Off doubled down yesterday evening (May 17) by giving a platform to Avner Gvaryahu, the Executive Director of the anti-Israel and radical organization known as “Breaking the Silence” to condemn Israel. Read our full alert here.
UPDATE: May 16, 2018 (7:00pm EST) Following HRC’s complaint and the publication of our communique, CBC As It Happens has amended the headline to this report which now says:
Now absent from the headline is Oren’s blaming Hamas for Gaza violence and the media (including CBC’s Carol Off) for complicity. In its place, CBC appropriating a partial quote of Oren’s saying that “Israel had ‘no choice’ but to shoot Palestinians”. His expanded quote mentions that the majority of the casualties were terror operatives/combatants.
Yesterday evening, the CBC Radio program As It Happens featured a blatantly one-sided and bellicose interview conducted by Anchor Carol Off and former Israeli Ambassador to the U.S and current Deputy Minister in the Israeli government, Michael Oren, discussing the recent riots along the Gaza-Israel border.
Anchor Carol Off is known for her animus towards Israel. In the interview, Oren blamed Hamas for the bloodshed at the Israel-Gaza border this week, and said that the media, including CBC Anchor Carol Off, were doing the terrorist group’s bidding and were “complicit”. Oren accused Off of being a “conspirator with Hamas” and an “abettor of terrorism”.
Off started the interview with the following inflammatory question: “Deputy Minister Oren, is there any limit to the number of Palestinians that Israel is willing to shoot and kill?” Off then said that “there is no limit to the numbers (of Palestinians you) are going to kill.”
The interview got very heated at this point:
Carol Off: How do you think that looked to the world yesterday when all those people were shot dead at their border?
Michael Oren: I think it looked to the world the way Hamas wanted it to look to the world the world.You’re doing just what they want you to.Even your line of questioning is just what Hamas wants.And, frankly, Carol you’re complicit in further damage and even deaths of Palestinian kids. Because Hamas is going to conclude from listening to this interview that it works.And people like you in the media will turn around and say it’s great, and Hamas are going to wake up tomorrow morning and do it again.I hope you’re proud of it.
It continued at this juncture:
Carol Off: What is it you were defending yourself against yesterday? Why did you shoot those people?
Michael Oren: Their goal was to break through and kill. Now you spin it in a different way, but it wasn’t. The way you spin it, it’s just the way Hamas wants it.I hope they send you a thank-you note because you’re doing great.
The dust up didn’t stop here:
Carol Off: All of them? Palestinians are all terrorists?
Michael Oren: I think you have to ask yourself two very important questions. Why do you not care when Arabs kill Arabs. Only when Jews are forced to kill to defend themselves?And why do you — you — play the role of conspirator with Hamas?You are an abettor of terrorism.
In sharp contrast, prior to this interview, Carol Off conducted a sympathetic interview with anti-Israel detractor Tarek Loubani, a Palestinian-Canadian doctor who claims he was shot on Monday by Israeli snipers and that other medical practitioners were “summarily executed”. Off asked Loubani if Israel intentionally targeted medical practitioners.
It was noticeable to any discerning listeners that Off struck a sympathetic tone with Loubani and a combative tone with Oren.
Untold by Carol Off is that Hamas officials say that 50 of the 62 Gazans killed in border violence were its own members. Israel previously said that at least 24 Gazans reported killed at the border on May 14 were terrorists. Hamas and Islamic Jihad published photos acknowledging that 13 of their operatives died in Monday’s violence.
Ms. Off’s interviews were unfair, lacked balance and context and stood in violation of the CBC’s Journalistic Standards and Practices.
This is a classic and an egregious example of media bias against Israel which was carried out on our public broadcaster’s national airwaves. HRC has filed an official complaint with CBC and we strongly encourage you to communicate your concerns too. To send a complaint to CBC News, please send emails to CBC Editor-in-Chief Jennifer McGuire at: Jennifer.McGuire@cbc.ca. Please refer to CBC Anchor Carol Off’s May 15 As It Happens interview with former Israeli Ambassador to the U.S. Michael Oren and condemn her one-sided and biased interviews.