CBC As It Happens Features Guest Complaining That Israel Does Not Advertise Its Counter-Terrorism Operations In Advance

June 18, 2024

In the latest installment of a whitewashing of Hamas’ war crimes in Gaza, a recent episode of the CBC radio program As It Happens zeroed in on an Israeli strike on a supposed “UN-run school,” with only the barest of mention from Israel that it was actually run by Hamas.

In the June 6 segment entitled: “’Utter chaos’ at one of Gaza’s last standing hospitals, says nurse,” co-hosts Chris Howden and Nil Köksal spoke with Karin Huster, a nurse with Doctors Without Borders inside Gaza.

The conversation surrounded a June 5 Israeli air strike on a facility operated by UNRWA, the disgraced United Nations agency with extensive ties to Palestinian terrorism, including having a huge Hamas operations centre underneath its Gaza headquarters.

To hear co-host Chris Howden describe it in his introduction, “The Israeli military has stepped up air strikes on the central part of the strip. And today, a UN-run school was hit — killing at least 33 people, according to Gaza’s Ministry of Health.”

The only larger context given by Howden was the briefest of statements that “Israel says that the strike targeted militants inside the school,” before introducing his guest.

What Howden obscured from listeners is that Israel argues that those targeted were roughly 30 members of Hamas as well as Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ), including some who had personally participated in the murderous terrorist rampage on October 7.

Israel subsequently released the names of nine terrorists, six of whom included accompanying photographs, who were eliminated during the counter-terrorism operations.

However, virtually the entirety of the interview with Huster surrounded the guest giving exaggerated, apocalyptic and otherwise false statements.

Huster told Howden and Köksal that “without any warning from the Israeli forces, there are renewed strikes in all those areas. So…no, nowhere is it safe in Gaza…”

Characteristically for As It Happens, the hosts did not challenge Huster as to why Israel is morally obligated to provide warning to Hamas in advance of its operations, given that it would only provide the terrorist group with the ability to then prepare.

Nevertheless, Israel has extensively provided advance warning of its operations in Gaza over the last eight months, reflecting a major effort to minimize civilian casualties, though these steps were characteristically entirely ignored during the conversation.

Painting a dire picture, Huster said that “Since May 7th — as you probably know — the Rafah crossing between Gaza and Egypt has been closed. And so, we have not received any medicines, any medical supplies, hardly any fuel, hardly any humanitarian workers, hardly any food inside Gaza since then.”

Only two days earlier, Hamas fired mortars from Rafah into a nearby staging area for aid into Gaza, killing four Israeli soldiers. On May 7, Israel gained control of the Rafah crossing, but Egypt has refused to reopen it as long as Israeli soldiers operate the humanitarian junction.

Beyond the dishonest absurdity of ignoring these fundamental details on Huster’s part – enabled by the silence of Howden and Köksal – Huster is patently wrong about “hardly any food” entering Gaza over the last month. In fact, on any given day, hundreds of trucks with fuel, food and other supplies enter the coastal territory, but Huster’s bald-faced disinformation was allowed to stand without any challenge from her hosts.

The CBC radio program As It Happens has been a regular and consistent source for anti-Israel disinformation in recent weeks. A May 7 episode presented listeners with a dramatically skewed picture of events in Gaza as part of an interview with an Al Jazeera reporter, on April 29, the broadcast gave a fawning interview in discussing the anti-Israel hate mob at McGill University, and more.

While the program is entitled to discuss the humanitarian conditions in Gaza, As It Happens – once again – provided an agenda-driven discussion, providing listeners with a paucity of evidence, and instead, simply plenty of false claims without challenge.

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