Sunday, May 10, 2009

canada-israel committee: ‘Canadians naive, lack capacity to view broadcasts in critical way’

Posted by Christian  |  at  10.5.09












56/365 Aljazeera Newsroom


Back in February of this year, the Ethnic Channels Group announced it would present an application to the CRTC in an effort to add  international news and current affairs channel, Al-Jazeera English, to Canadian airwaves. If approved, AJE would be available by satellite for digital distribution.

Beside award winning content, they have also pledged to open a Canadian news bureau to bring Canadian news to their worldwide audience ~ a first for any international news organization.  AJE claims they are available in over 100 countries and 140 million households, placing them among the top three global English language  news channels with BBC World and CNN International.  Many have described AJE’s coverage of the recent Israeli Gaza offensive as professional, balanced, even heroic. Gideon Levy from  


My war hero is Ayman Mohyeldin, the young correspondent for Al Jazeera English and the only foreign correspondent broadcasting during these awful days in a Gaza Strip closed off to the media. Al Jazeera English is not what you might think. It offers balanced, professional reporting from correspondents both in Sderot and Gaza.


Whoever recoils from our heroic tales, bias, whitewashed words, Rorschach images of bombing, IDF Spokesman-distributed photographs, propagandists' excuses, self-satisfied generals and half-truths is invited to tune in. Whoever wants to know what is really happening, not only of a postponed wedding in Sderot and a cat forgotten in Ashkelon.

I suppose Gideon is a hater too!

The Qatar based broadcaster is also seen is Israel and has a bureau there, broadcasting their point of view. So why do Canadian Jewish lobbyists believe the channel should be monitored 24 hours a day? Why do these lobbyists believe they have the right to tell the rest of the country what is or what is not anti-Semitic? Well, Shimon Fogel, CEO of  Canada-Israel Committee says Canadians ‘lack the capacity to view the broadcast in a critical way’

   As he put it, “Israelis have multiple sources of news and analysis that all focus on the same issues and the same level of intensity as Al-Jazeera, minus the distortion. Here in Canada, however, the audience is considerably more naive and lacks the capacity to view the broadcast in a critical way, or to seek alternative perspectives.” As a result, he noted, Canadian viewers may draw “tainted and compromised” conclusions.”

Right, the only path to enlightenment is through Fogel’s approved choice of media. He’s just trying to protect the simpletons. Shimon, Canadians know what’s going on, as does Gideon. 

Bernie Farber, CEO of the Canadian Jewish Congress, is also spreading his bullshit.

“We have always opposed the request by Al-Jazeera for a broadcast licence,” he said. “The only true record we have of Al-Jazeera is the parent Arabic station, which has broadcast anti-Semitism and Holocaust denial.” 



“At the very least, these guidelines would have to be fully honoured. Anything less would be unacceptable. The key guidelines [centre] around the need for a delay in broadcasting so that any hate-mongering could be dealt with prior to coming on air, and signed guarantees of responsibility to ensure that Canada’s laws pertaining to hate promotion and broadcast standards would be honoured.”



This is

nonsense. Tying AJE with AJA and their past controversies is disingenuous, at best. Use the google, Bernie. If you were interested in “the record”, you could find it in a matter of minutes. As to Bernie’s second point, again I ask, who made him the decider of what is or is not acceptable? Why the pre-emptive strike, Bernie? Why not let the broadcasts actually air before you start crying “anti-Semitism!”?  Then, if Canada’s speech laws were to be violated, in your opinion, you could lodge a complaint with the proper governing body, they in turn would study what actually happened and issue a ruling. Is that not democratic enough for you? Or should we only listen to the CJC’s media recommendations list?


What I believe Bernie and friends are really after with these restrictions, is to discourage cable companies from carrying AJE. It worked in 2004.




In its ruling issued Thursday, the CRTC said distributors of Al-Jazeera in Canada will be required to guard against the broadcast of "any abusive comment." That could mean the editing or deleting of some content before it airs.

"We're not going to take that liability to censor. It's not practical. For all practical purposes, that decision is as good as saying no to al-Jazeera," said Michael Hennessy of the Canadian Cable Television Association, which fought to bring the station to Canada.

Rogers Cable, a major player in Canada, has said 24/7 monitoring is too strict, and it's unlikely they'll carry the channel.


The CRTC is looking for feedback from Canadians. Comments are welcome at their website, via snail mail or fax.  Comments

must be received by June 8. Here is more info on procedure.

*image provided by jdebner via Flickr


  1. Canadians lack the capacity to view the broadcast in a critical waySomeone should enlighten Messrs Fogel & Farber to the fact that Canadians do have the capacity to call BULL when they hear/read it.

    The sheer audacity of some people’s offspring is disgusting.

  2. Excellent overview, Christian -- thanks very much.

  3. Hey sassy, the two F's will claim bias anytime a story isn't told in a way that favours Israel. They are not interested in truth or fairness, only spin and justification for their actions. If you visit the two F's sites, they have a team of spinners ready to go, wherever they are needed.

    p.s, sorry for taking so long to reply. I was gone early this morning, and just arrived home.

  4. skdadl, thanks for the kind words.

  5. Have to comment that I support AlJaz being added to viewing options and did back in 2004 when I wrote CRTC to that effect. Strongly object to any body or lobby group monitoring 24/7.

    *Bear in mind that this comment is from the brain of a naive person of diminished capacity incapable of searching out alternative views on www ................

  6. DianaMarie, I see you are also incapable of choosing just one first name. :) {kidding}

    I have checked out AJE online. It's rich in content and would give us access to other parts of the World that would only garner a brief mention now.

    I say let em in!

  7. Christian - agreed about AJE online, I have been reading it (from time to time) for a few years now.

  8. Same here, sassy. For me, it's like the Times Online. A great site that I don't seem to visit enough.


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