Carol Off, the host of CBC Radio’s “As It Happens” program, is known for her animus towards Israel. It was not surprising to see her show use the Coronva virus pandemic as a pretext to tacitly criticize the Jewish state.
The March 19 broadcast of the program saw Off interview Dr. Tarek Loubani, a notorious anti-Israel activist and self-described Palestinian-Canadian who is working in Gaza to make 3D-printed face shields for COVID-19. According to the CBC: “Dr. Tarek Loubani runs the Glia Project, which produces low-cost medical supplies for impoverished regions.”
To listen to the full interview please click here.
The CBC As It Happens program reported the following:
Loubani (pictured right) says the atmosphere on the front lines of the crisis feels very similar to working in a conflict zone.
“It really does feel right now like when we’re sitting in Al-Shifa Hospital, the biggest hospital in Gaza, and we know that there is a bombing coming and we’re just waiting. That’s exactly how it feels like now,” Loubani said.
“Everybody’s gloved, everybody’s gowned and everybody’s waiting.”
In one fell swoop, Loubani assimilated the Corona virus pandemic that has killed thousands, made sick hundreds of thousands, and brought the world to a standstill – to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Naturally, Ms. Off did not challenge this offensive comparison, instead, she described Gaza as “… often a tense conflict zone and it’s a place where he’s (Loubani is) forced to get creative with limited resources. ” and concluded her interview by saying to Loubani: “I admire your courage and you’re into ingenuity.”
It’s noteworthy that Loubani has been interviewed several times on As It Happens (AIH). On May 15, 2018, AIH featured a sympathetic interview with Dr. Loubani who wailed about being allegedly shot and wounded by Israeli soldiers. Loubani claimed he was in Gaza during border riots along the Gaza-Israel frontier to allegedly treat injured Palestinian “protestors” and to apply tourniquets. To recall, for many months, Palestinians (abetted by Hamas) rioted and launched terror attacks at the Gaza fence and attempted to breach the border with Israel. Ms. Off never did quite explain why a civilian would deliberately place himself in a war zone and in the line of fire. Importantly, this area was a site of constant terror attacks and violent rioting which saw Palestinian terrorists use sniper fire, grenades, arson balloons, IED’s, etc. In the interview, Off asked Loubani if Israel intentionally targeted medical practitioners, with Loubani claiming that they were “summarily executed” by the Israel Defense Forces. Loubani also described a “medic” from the Hamas terror group, Musa Abuhassanin, as “my rescuer, he was a very bright guy, an incredible man.” A photo at right shows Loubani next to the Hamas terrorist who was killed by the IDF. Loubani has also described Abuhassanin as having had “had a great laugh and was a good paramedic”. The CBC As It Happens website only identified Abuhassannin as a “medical volunteer,” even though Hamas acknowledged that he was one of their own and mourned and “martyred” his death.
As well, in 2015, As It Happens interviewed Loubani about how he wanted to bring solar power to Gaza hospitals in need.
Off and As It Happens have a long history of anti-Israel bias. Also on May 15, 2018, As It Happens featured a blatantly one-sided and bellicose interview conducted by Anchor Carol Off and former Israeli Ambassador to the U.S., Michael Oren, discussing rioting along the Gaza-Israel border. Oren accused Off of being a “conspirator with Hamas” and an “abettor of terrorism”. Oren blamed Hamas for the bloodshed at the Israel-Gaza border, and said that the media, including CBC Anchor Carol Off, were doing the terrorist group’s bidding and were “complicit”.
It was noticeable to any discerning listeners that Off struck a sympathetic tone with Loubani and a combative tone with Oren.
On May 17, 2018, AIH and Carol Off gave a platform to Avner Gvaryahu, the executive director of the anti-Israel and radical organization known as “Breaking the Silence” to condemn Israel.
In April 2018, HRC prompted CBC As It Happens to acknowledge Israeli claims that a slain Palestinian “journalist” was a Hamas member.
In December of 2015, CBC’s Ombudsman upheld an HRC complaint that an interview that AIH had conducted with an anti-Israel NGO wasn’t adherent to CBC Standards.
In 2011, AIH egregiously insinuated that anti-Israel activists who took part in the border skirmishes at the time, all used “non-violent” civil disobedience of the likes of Mahatma Gandhi, Martin Luther King, and Nelson Mandela and did not deploy real violence against Israeli soldiers.
Finally, in 2003, Carol Off had pro-Israel advocate Alan Dershowitz on her program and he took her to task for her (and the CBC’s anti-Israel bias). The segment was from the program “Counterspin” and it caused enough of a controversy that even the satirical show “This Hour Has 22 Minutes” riffed on how Off has an anti-Israel bias on their show later in the year. Both clips can be seen in this montage by clicking on the image below.