Israel Under Attack: What The Canadian Media Ignored

As of this writing, close to 150 rockets have been fired indiscriminately at Israel by Iran-backed Hamas and Islamic Jihad terrorists in Gaza, along with an anti-tank missile which wounded an Israeli and incendiary balloons which sparked 10+ wildfires. Earlier today, an Israeli driver was nearly lynched by rioters, but was miraculously saved by a near-by police officer who repelled the attackers.

Over the weekend, thousands of Muslim worshipers engaged in violent riots on the Temple Mount compound with the ensuing clashes wounding over 300 Palestinians and 21 Israeli police.

The overall impression left by the mainstream media was that brutal Israeli police assaulted innocent Muslim “worshipers” and “protestors” and desecrated revered Muslim holy sites.

Largely untold by the media, the rioters were armed with stockpiles of rocks, firecrackers, Molotov cocktails, and more and were incited by Hamas and the Palestinian Authority to bomb Tel Aviv claiming that Israel sought to “Judaize” Jerusalem.

In the backdrop of the riots: Israel is going through a decades-long legal process to adjudicate whether to evict Palestinian families who have been illegally squatting and living rent-free in Jewish-owned homes in the east Jerusalem neighbourhood of Sheikh Jarrah/Shimon HaTzadik.

The Palestinian families refuse to pay rent to the owner, a Jewish organization dating back to before Israel’s independence in 1948. Jews were evicted and ethnically cleansed from the area when Jordan occupied east Jerusalem subsequent to the War of Independence. The Jordanians then made that part of the city, which included the Jewish Quarter of the Old City, Judenrein, so no Jews were allowed to remain in the place that is most holy to them, despite three millennia of continuous Jewish presence. The families brought the cases to lower courts, who upheld the laws. Since then, the evictions, which have been held off by order of Israel’s Supreme Court due to the tense situation, have been used as an excuse for Palestinians to riot throughout Jerusalem.

Of course, disputes between landlords and tenants are a common occurrence around the world, but for Canadians watching the news this past weekend about riots in Jerusalem, they were deprived of knowing about this important context.

Reports by CTV National News and CBC TV and Radio are noteworthy both for their misleading claims, and for their important omissions.

First, little context was given about the history of the Sheik Jarrah/Shimon HaTzadik ownership and of Israel’s legal ownership of Jerusalem in general. In a CTV National report on May 8, Daniele Hamamdjian mentioned the planned eviction of the Palestinian families, but didn’t acknowledge the legal claims of ownership – backed up by a court of law no less – to bolster the Jewish claim. Additionally, Hamamdjian mentioned that Israel annexed eastern Jerusalem in 1967, leading viewers to wrongly conclude that Israel had no pre-existing historical or other ties to the area. Rather, the land in question was purchased in 1875 by Jews.

Watch Danielle Hamamdjian’s report by clicking here or below:

With respect to Jerusalem in general, there is more than three thousand years of rich Jewish history in the holy city, but viewers would not have known that from CTV’s report. Hamamdjian’s erroneous claim that the Al Aqsa Mosque is holy both to Jews and Muslims didn’t help matters. The mosque sits atop the Temple Mount, where two historic Jewish temples existed in antiquity, but the mosque itself is not of significance to Jews, the Temple Mount is the holiest site in Judaism.

Reporting from Beirut, CBC TV reporter Rebecca Collard even went so far as to refer to Jews in eastern Jerusalem as “Israeli settlers,” and suggested that their presence there could be a war crime, but no historical context about thousands of years of history, or even of the contemporary legal basis for the Israeli claim was given. Instead, Collard erroneously claimed that: “Since 1967, when Israel occupied east Jerusalem and the west bank, it has moved hundreds of thousands of settlers across the green line into these areas. Now the U.N. has said last week that that could actually be a war crime, moving Israeli civilians into occupied territory.” Watch the report by clicking here.

In truth, Israel argues that the Fourth Geneva Convention prohibits only the forcible transfer of people of one state to the territory of another state that it has occupied as a result of a war. Jews were never forced to live in these communities, theirs was a voluntary return to the land from which they or their ancestors were uprooted. As well, it’s important to state that there was no recognized sovereign in these areas and the Six Day War was a war of self-defense wherein Israel acquired lands it had a preexisting claim to.

CTV and CBC’s reports downplayed the real violence perpetrated by Palestinian rioters. A CBC Radio report by Irris Makler referred only to Palestinian protesters, but photos which emerged showed rioters stockpiling rocks, large enough to easily kill an intended target on the Temple Mount compound.

Listen to the report by clicking here or below:

In the CBC Radio report, Makler also downplayed the role of Hamas, whose flags were prominently waved on the Temple Mount during the riots, only as an “Islamist” group, when in reality, it’s a vicious terrorist organization committed to Israel’s destruction, which has murdered hundreds of innocent Israelis and maimed thousands more.

None of these reports gave the proper context by which viewers could properly understand the larger circumstances of this escalating violence in Jerusalem and throughout Israel. A viewer could get the impression that an Israeli court decision sparked a wave of discontent among disadvantaged people, leading to a spontaneous outpouring of protests and violence.

However, reality is not quite as simple. This narrative ignores the extensive evidence of pre-planned violence by the Palestinian Authority – stretching back at least 20 years to the Second Intifada in 2000’s – to widespread evidence of stockpiling of rocks on the Temple Mount.

The simple tinderbox theory also ignores the widespread incitement from the Palestinian Authority and Hamas against not just the State of Israel, but any Jewish presence in the Holy Land whatsoever. So, if there are the conditions for violence in Jerusalem, they were prepared, not by the legal and centuries-old Jewish presence in the Sheikh Jarrah neighbourhood, but by a cynical Palestinian attempt to manipulate their public opinion to encourage hatred and violence against Israelis and Jews.

This is the crucial context that Canadian media like CBC and CTV let go out of sight and out of mind.

File a complaint with CTV News at:

File a Complaint with CBC News by clicking here.


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