Massacre of Israeli Family met by Callous Canadian Media Indifference (March 17, 2011)

March 17, 2011

   Massacre of Israeli Family met by Callous    
              Canadian Media Indifference
March 17, 2011
By: Mike Fegelman, Executive Director

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Dear HonestReporting Canada Subscriber,

By now you have probably heard about the brutal terror attack where a knife-wielding Palestinian terrorist massacred an innocent Israeli family of five. The Fogels of Itamar.

You would think that the shocking premeditated murder of a mother, father, and three children aged 10, 4, and 3-months would be enough to secure ample news coverage in Canadian media outlets. Yet, as a result of skewed priorities and/or a callous disregard, certain Canadian news outlets either virtually ignored the incident or otherwise produced unsatisfactorily condensed news reports. has been on the frontlines exposing egregious instances of international media bias related to this attack. As chronicled by our affiliate, the LA Times shockingly claimed that the brutal murder of the Fogel family was part of an ongoing "cycle of violence" where settlements provoke baby killing. Sky News showed their skewed news priorities with media coverage that saw settlements trump baby killers. Not to be outdone, the BBC buried the real story of this tragedy and cast doubt on the veracity of the terror attack to instead use this incident as a springboard to malign the settlement enterprise. After scores of complaints, the BBC updated their problematic coverage and implicitly acknowledged that a serious error was made.  CNN was also faulted for bending over backwards to avoid describing the incident as a terror attack. After Israel’s Government Press Office intervened, the story was amended online.

Canada’s media on the other hand, specifically our national news providers such as: The National Post, CBC, and the Globe and Mail, are deserving recipients of opprobrium for their sheer indifference to producing adequate news coverage of this incident.

The National Post is well known for its sterling news coverage of the Middle East and for Its staunch defense of the State of Israel, it’s for this reason that we were surprised (and disappointed) that following the attack, successive issues of the publication completely ignored this incident altogether. HonestReporting Canada communicated this concern to a senior editor at the National Post and we are pleased to report that in Tuesday’s edition, the Post published a  500-word article from Agence France-Presse entitled "Israeli family stabbed to death in West Bank."

Sadly, the Post wasn’t exceptional in this regard. While news bureaus around the world have rightfully devoted their column inches and airtime to the Japanese earthquake disaster and the continued unrest that has enveloped the Arab world, the Globe and Mail, Canada’s so-called paper of record, could only muster up a measly wire brief in its news pages to tell its national audience about this horrendous massacre.

How did our public broadcaster fare? To date, CBC Radio has completely ignored the incident and CBC Television featured a misleading 30-second newsflash (see left) which falsely claimed that settlement building was as a result of peace talks "coming to a halt". The report headlined "Building settlements: Israel pushes ahead plans to build in West Bank" gives you an idea about the focus of this short report, which only in the end mentioned the terror attack almost as if it was an afterthought. did provide adequate  coverage, but flagship CBC programs like "The National", "The Current", "World at Six", "World Report", etc., failed to even acknowledge that this incident had occured. (To see how other Canadian media covered this incident, please see our Daily Brief reports here and here.)

It’s a sad state of affairs to see influential Canadian media outlets altogether ignore important narratives that this massacre has exposed. Issues such as the culture of incitement to violence that exists in the Palestinian territories which served as a catalyst for this attack and the human stories behind this incident how over 20,000 people joined together  to mourn as a community and how the remaining surviving children of the Fogel family, two-year-old Yishai, eight-year-old Ro’I, and 12-year-old Tamar and are now orphans, with Tamar stating that she will be a mother to her younger brothers.

Just as this massacre went "out of sight and out of mind," with the Canadian media, we trust that you won’t read about an awe-inspiring new development to this story which just yesterday saw real-life drama unfold when Israeli soldiers and settlers saved the life of a Palestinian woman giving birth in the same settlement where the Fogel relatives were sitting Shiva. Such a story, if covered, would certainly relay the polarizing differences between those that value life and others who value death.

How You Can Make A Difference:

If you’re local media outlet didn’t feature coverage of the massacre of this Israeli family or of how Israel soldiers and settlers saved an Arab baby and her mother, send a letter to the editor to ensure that these stories get deserving airtime and newsprint.

For full contact information of your local Canadian news outlet click here.





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