Fri12152017

Last update03:16:03 PM GMT

Font Size

Layout

Settings
Back Activities Alert Archive MEDIA ALERT: 'CHANNEL 4 AND MUSLIM 'ANTI-SEMTITISM' CONTROVERSY

MEDIA ALERT: 'CHANNEL 4 AND MUSLIM 'ANTI-SEMTITISM' CONTROVERSY

  • PDF
Share/Save/Bookmark
Protest against \'Blaming the Jews\' aired on Channel 4, Saturday 28th June.

--------------------------------
Islamic Human Rights Commission
--------------------------------

MEDIA ALERT: 'CHANNEL 4 AND MUSLIM 'ANTI-SEMTITISM' CONTROVERSY

02 July 2003

In his The Observer article, 'The new anti-Semitism', as a prelude to his \"documentary\", 'Blaming the Jews', David Aaronovitch, columnist for The Guardian and The Observer, attempts to establish the holy book of Islam, the Qur'an, as the fount of Muslim anti-Semitism. In it he makes the somewhat dubious and hyperbolic claim that:

\"But if you read the Koran, and talk to Muslim scholars, it soon becomes clear that the book lends itself to interpretation . Mohammed's travails include run-ins with unbelievers of all kinds including Jews, who - naturally - are wrong and perverse for not comprehending the transcendent truth of all that he says\".

Mr Aaronovitch in his documentary qualifies this approach by quoting the Qur'anic verse \"And ye know of those of you who broke the Sabbath, how We said unto them: Be ye apes, despised and hated!\" (Chapter 'The Cow', verse 65) out of context without explanation of its meaning or reference to a qualified Muslim scholar, as evidence of Qur'anic anti-Semitism and hence the reference point for wider Muslim anti-Semitism. What Mr Aaronovitch omitted was that this verse is not about the Jews per se, but concerns those historical Jews who actively broke the Jewish Sabbath (i.e. Mosaic Law as the law of God). Furthermore, Mr Aaronovitch fails to mention that the Prophet Muhammad (s) stated that those Muslims who similarly break the law of God will also be transformed into apes.

This is not the first time Aaronvitch has attempted to tar those individuals and groups to whom he has taken a disliking to with the insidious brush of anti-Semitism. Infact, Aaronvitch has been publicly rebuked for such attempts, as illustrated in the following letters to The Guardian (28th and 29th May 2003):

\"In 20 years of anti-imperialist writing I have never been called a racist, but now after ploughing through scores of my articles David Aaronovitch (Message to the left: there is no all-powerful Jewish lobby, G2, May 27) has managed to find a few phrases to paint me into his rogues gallery of alleged anti-semites, which includes Paul Foot, Tam Dalyell and a \"blonde middle-aged woman\" he met at Hay-on-Wye.
He mentions my report on the 120-strong Israeli spy ring arrested in the US shortly before the 9/11 attacks. Far from being an anti-semitic fantasy of mine, as he implies, the art student spy ring is a hard fact, analysed on my website www.911dossier.co.uk, reported in depth by Fox TV and documented by the US government in a long report which has been leaked.
Have we reached the point where any mention of Israel is anti-semitic? My website is a general overview of 9/11 with one section only on the Israeli connection.

Ian Henshall
Hove, East Sussex \"

\"David Aaronovitch (Message to the left: there is no all-powerful Jewish lobby, G2, May 27) appears to be attempting to smear Media Lens by associating our name with anti-semitism - a prejudice we abhor. He knows that in scores of media alerts over the last two years, we have repeatedly stated our opposition to all forms of racism, hatred and violence.
Aaronovitch chooses to focus on a messageboard poster described as a \"Media Lens regular\". The poster is a member of the public who has nothing whatever to do with the Media Lens project.

David Edwards
David Cromwell
Media Lens\"

\"David Aaronovitch seriously misrepresents a contributor to the Media Lens message board by quoting selectively from a threaded discussion. The editors of Media Lens must be doing something right though, when the only response Mr Aaronovitch can make to their many detailed arguments and critiques of the accuracy of his journalism over the past year or so, is name-calling by association.
Dr Glen Byrne
London\"

Thus, Mr Aaronvitch has an established reputation for constant anti-Semitism accusations. What better way to discredit those who depart from one's agenda than to attempt to portray them, regardless of how frivolous or non-existent the evidence may be, as rabid purveyors of anti-Semitism. Perhaps what lies behind Mr Aaronvitch's motivations is his latent Islamophobia, clearly evident in his work:

\"My greatest feelings of discomfort, however, are reserved for those religious people who are obviously and outwardly pious. Because here I really do not know what is being demanded of me. Take the hijab - the headscarf worn by many Muslim women - a rarity 20 years ago, but now ubiquitous in many big cities. Is it saying, \"Don't look at me\", or \"Look at me\"? ('Please don't rub your faith in my face', The Guardian, 17 June 2003).

\"Meanwhile, there is massive Muslim support for the anti-war movement. But, though no one dares say so, quite a lot of what Muslim spokespeople say is highly questionable\" ('The real reasons so many are marching', The Guardian, 25 March 2003).

\"The only two movements that Jews don't seem to have led are fascism and Islamic fundamentalism\" ('The ultimate Jewish conspiracy theory', The Guardian, 15 January 2003).

Mr Aaronvitch displays sheer irresponsibility in the nature of his reporting, if not pure laziness and insincere ideological motivations.

What remains to be seen is whether Channel Four would allow an 'Islamist' journalist, such as Faisal Bodi, to explore the phenomena of Islamophobia and racism that exists within the Jewish community and the problem of Islamophobia in the media.

We urge IHRC volunteers to write to the Channel Four chairman, Mr Vanni Treves, protesting against this program. You can use some of the above issues as talking points or use the specimen letter below.

For more information please contact us:

Islamic Human Rights Commission
PO Box 598
Wembley
HA9 7XH
United Kingdom

Tel: +44-20-8902-0888
Fax: +44-20-8902-0889
email: info@ihrc.org
web: www.ihrc.org

To subscribe to the IHRC mailing list email: subscribe@ihrc.org
To unsubscribe from the IHRC mailing list email: unsubscribe@ihrc.org



------------------------SPECIMEN LETTER---------------------

Your name
Your address




Date



Mr Vanni Treves
Chairman
Channel 4 Television
124 Horseferry Road
London SW1P 2TX


Dear Mr Treves

Re: David Aaronovitch's 'Blaming the Jews' (Saturday 28 June 2003)

In his article in The Observer, 'The new anti-Semitism', a prelude to his \"documentary\", 'Blaming the Jews', David Aaronovitch, columnist for The Guardian and The Observer, attempts to establish the holy book of Islam, the Qur'an, as the fount of Muslim anti-Semitism. In it he makes the somewhat dubious and hyperbolic claim that:

\"But if you read the Koran, and talk to Muslim scholars, it soon becomes clear that the book lends itself to interpretation . Mohammed's travails include run-ins with unbelievers of all kinds including Jews, who - naturally - are wrong and perverse for not comprehending the transcendent truth of all that he says\".

Mr Aaronovitch in his documentary qualifies this approach by quoting the Qur'anic verse \"And ye know of those of you who broke the Sabbath, how We said unto them: Be ye apes, despised and hated!\" (Chapter 'The Cow', verse 65) out of context without explanation of its meaning or reference to a qualified Muslim scholar, as evidence of Qur'anic anti-Semitism and hence the reference point for wider Muslim anti-Semitism. What Mr Aaronovitch omitted was that this verse is not about the Jews per se, but concerns those historical Jews who actively broke the Jewish Sabbath (i.e. Mosaic Law as the law of God). Furthermore, Mr Aaronovitch fails to mention that the Prophet Muhammad (s) stated that those Muslims who similarly break the law of God will also be transformed into apes.

This is not the first time Aaronvitch has attempted to tar those individuals and groups to whom he has taken a disliking to with the insidious brush of anti-Semitism. In fact, Aaronvitch has been publicly rebuked for such attempts in a series of open letters to The Guardian (28th and 29th May 2003).

Thus, Mr Aaronvitch has an established reputation for constant anti-Semitism accusations. What better way to discredit those who depart from one's agenda than to attempt to portray them, regardless of how frivolous or non-existent the evidence may be, as rabid purveyors of anti-Semitism. Perhaps what lies behind Mr Aaronvitch's motivations is his latent Islamophobia, clearly evident in his work:

\"My greatest feelings of discomfort, however, are reserved for those religious people who are obviously and outwardly pious. Because here I really do not know what is being demanded of me. Take the hijab - the headscarf worn by many Muslim women - a rarity 20 years ago, but now ubiquitous in many big cities. Is it saying, \"Don't look at me\", or \"Look at me\"? ('Please don't rub your faith in my face', The Guardian, 17 June 2003).

Mr Aaronvitch displays sheer irresponsibility in the nature of his reporting, if not pure laziness and insincere ideological motivations.

What remains to be seen is whether Channel Four would allow an 'Islamist' journalist, such as Faisal Bodi, to explore the phenomena of Islamophobia and racism that exists within the Jewish community and the problem of Islamophobia in the media. After all, Channel Four boasts of unbiased, multi-voiced reporting - what could be more fairer than giving an argument, a counter-argument?

Yours sincerely


........
(name)

Don't be a Silent Victim

silent-victimHave you been verbally abused, harassed, discriminated against or even violently attacked because you are Muslim? Have you been mistreated by the police or security services or a victim of anti-terror laws? Click here to report your incident to us in confidence and, if you wish, anonymously.