CBC Kids News Gives Unfettered Platform For Anti-Israel Accusations

April 10, 2024

In an April 4 article for CBC Kids News, Program Assistant Taylor Katzel penned an article entitled: “How Ramadan feels different this year for these Canadian teens,” which presented a viewpoint which parroted Hamas talking points.

Katzel wrote that “this year, however, Ramadan has a different tone for Noor and many Muslims around Canada due to the war and food shortages in Gaza. Indeed, a UN report published earlier this month said that famine is imminent and likely to occur by May in northern Gaza and could spread across the enclave by July.”

While Katzel accurately mentioned that the war started with Hamas’ invasion of Israel on October 7, but the author continued by telling readers that “since then, Israel has launched rocket attacks and a ground assault in Gaza, killing more than 30,000 people, according to Gaza health officials. Very little aid is being allowed past the borders between Israel and Gaza.”

On the back of these supposed facts, Katzel quoted two Muslim teens who explained how their Ramadan has been sadly subdued due to the plight of the Palestinians in Gaza. They, too, mention the “famine” in Gaza and Katzel did not provide context.

Had he done so, he could have mentioned that Israel vociferously disputes the UN famine prediction, citing many flaws, including that the United Nations report he cites relies on Hamas disinformation as the basis for its claims.

The United Nations in Gaza, via UNRWA, the disgraced agency with ties to Hamas, is hardly a reputable source, either. UNRWA members have participated in the October 7 massacres, their school textbooks contain overt incitement against Israel and praise for terrorism, and a Hamas data centre was found directly underneath UNRWA’s headquarters in Gaza.

Despite the United Nations’ compromised situation in Gaza, Katzel continued to present the organization’s report as both credible, and undisputed.

Katzel also stated that very little aid is getting into Gaza. This is untrue. Considerably more food aid is getting into Gaza than before October 7. Since the war started, Israel has allowed in over 20,500 trucks of aid, including 20,310 tons of medical aid. There are difficulties with distribution in Gaza, due to Hamas interference and aid organizations’ inefficiencies, leading to some Gazans bemoaning Hamas’ stealing the aid before they can reach it.

But even this is not at the level of the famine described.

Katzel’s claims of famine and minimal aid are further undermined by video footage showing food aplenty at Gazan markets, with plentiful meals being served, while others  even throw American airdropped meals into the garbage, hardly evidence of food shortages.

Katzel also asserted that Israel has killed “more than 30,000 people,” according to “Gaza health officials,” without telling readers that the “Gaza Ministry of Health” was established by Hamas in 2007 and they provide the figures Katzel repeats so uncritically.

Not only are Hamas’ figures wholly unverified, and fail to distinguish between civilians and combatants, or between those killed in Israeli strikes or errant Palestinian rockets, they are statistically highly unlikely to be true.

Hamas’s created casualty data increases with a daily regularity that belies a warzone, as pointed out by Abraham Wyner, a statistician at the Wharton School of Business.

Hamas’ crimes go far beyond statistical fakery; the terror group actively uses its own people as human shields, directly threatening the safety of the people it claims to represent. Grotesquely, Hamas terrorists recently chose to hide and then shoot from Al-Shifa Hospital’s maternity, emergency and burn wards!

Furthermore, readers of this CBC Kids News article would be reasonably left with the impression that Gaza is the only war where Muslims are in danger, ignoring other ongoing conflicts in Sudan, Yemen, Syria and elsewhere. In Sudan, a Muslim-majority country, as many as six million people are facing famine, but this humanitarian catastrophe apparently matters little to those interviewed.

Katzel provided his school-age audience with no context, and evinces no compunction in painting Israel as a wanton murderer. On the contrary, it enables him to provide a platform to repeat groundless accusations without evidence, despite the inconveniently unsupportive facts.

Unwittingly or not, CBC Kids News has previously helped to legitimize Hamas’ disinformation campaign with its ongoing whitewashing of Hamas’s central role in this war.

Accusing Israel of 30,000 deaths and of causing famine by blocking aid deliveries are both untrue. Katzel undermines CBC Kids News’ commitment to serious journalism by choosing to take a one-sided view and in doing so, does his bit to promote the suffering of civilians on both sides of the conflict.

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