"If the unannounced killing of civilians in their homes is to Makler’s “fancy,” then the least you can do is not subject viewers to her commentary. But to make hers the last word on this subject in your segment is insulting, injurious, and journalistically base."
October 10, 2023
Hannah Thibedeau, Host, CBC News
Brodie Fenlon, News Editor-in-Chief, CBC News
George Achi, Director of Journalistic Standards and Public Trust, CBC News
Dear Hannah Thibedeau, Brodie Fenlon, and George Achi,
I am writing on behalf of Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East (CJPME, cjpme.org) to demand on-air correction of your October 9 interview with Irris Makler on CBC News Network with Hannah Thibedeau, broadcast around 14:35 EST.
The host’s failure to challenge Makler’s language is unacceptable.
Israel is in the processing of killing hundreds of Palestinians by means of aerial assault. “At least 830 Palestinians, including at least 140 children, have been killed in the Gaza Strip since Saturday morning,” reports Defense for Children International.
Now, Israel controversially and illegally bombs civilian homes based on brief warnings for residents to flee. Hamas, as reported here by the New York Times, has said that should Israel fail to announce such bombings and instead kill Gazan civilians “in their homes without warning,” then Hamas may seek to deter this with hostage executions.
Your segment ends with Makler characterizing the Hamas position as a threat to execute hostages, and I quote the offensive language of this segment, “if the bombings – Israeli airstrikes – aren’t to their fancy, or aren’t done in a way that Hamas is asking for.”
If the unannounced killing of civilians in their homes is to Makler’s “fancy,” then the least you can do is not subject viewers to her commentary. But to make hers the last word on this subject in your segment is insulting, injurious, and journalistically base.
Circumstances require that you disassociate your program, with an on-air correction, from this language, and so from the offensive misrepresentation behind it. Some of your viewers will have relatives under fire in Gaza, and your broadcast was unacceptable.
Feel free to contact me at 438-380-5410 if you would like to discuss this further.
PhD, University of Exeter
Director of Strategic Operations
Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East/
Canadiens pour la Justice et la Paix au Moyen-Orient