Al Jazeera pulls video claiming Jews exploit the Holocaust

AJ+ Arabic video thumbnail, May 18, 2019.Twitter

JVL Introduction

An Al-Jazeera video – rapidly pulled – claimed that the establishment of Israel derived from Nazi ideology, and that pre-war Europe’s Jews were able to emphasise their sufferings because they were wealthy and controlled the media.  This is a horrifying piece but we welcome the words of Dr. Yaser Bishr the Executive Director of Digital Division :  Al Jazeera completely disowns the offensive content in question and reiterated that Al Jazeera would not tolerate such material on any of the Network’s platforms


Al Jazeera Pulls Video Claiming Holocaust Was ‘Different From How the Jews Tell It’

Video posted to AJ+ Arabic’s social media pages says Jews skewed Holocaust facts and statistics to get reparations from Germany, and that the establishment of Israel was derived from Nazi ideology

Ha’aretz
19 May 2019


Al-Jazeera’s AJ+ Arabic channel pulled a video it posted to its social media channels Friday night that claimed Jews exploit the Holocaust and that Israel is the genocide’s “greatest beneficiary.” Two journalists who created the video were later suspended.

The seven minute-long, Arabic-language video asserted that though the Holocaust did occur, “it’s different from how the Jews tell it,” Israeli media reported.

AJ+ Arabic, the youth-focused, online current-events channel of Qatar’s official Al Jazeera Media Network, posted the video on its social media platforms with the caption “The gas chambers killed millions of Jews…So the story says. How true is the #Holocaust and how did the Zionists benefit from it?”

Before its removal from the platforms on Saturday, the post reportedly gained 1.1 million views on Facebook and Twitter. After it was deleted, Al Jazeera said the piece violated the network’s editorial standards.

“The Jews weren’t the only targets of the Nazis, but also Gypsies [Roma], the disabled, homosexuals, and Arabs and Christians, too,” the video’s presenter, Muna Hawwa, said. “In all, the Nazis killed 20 million people during the Holocaust and the Final Solution, and the Jews were just a part of that. Then why does the world focus so much on Jews?”

According to the video, pre-war Europe’s Jews were able to emphasize their suffering because they were wealthy and controlled media companies. In addition, it claims, the “statistics were inflated by the Zionist movement to help them establish Israel.”

In fact, Israel’s Channel 13 notes, the video says “the establishment of the State of Israel itself is derived from the national ideology of the Nazis.”

The video asks “How did Israel gain from the Holocaust?” and goes on to discuss the 1933 Transfer Agreement, in which Zionist groups in Mandate Palestine negotiated with the Nazis to allow 60,000 German Jews to leave for Palestine and take some of their assets with them.

The Jews “exploited the Holocaust for their agenda and made the whole world focus on their murders and forget the other victims,” in order to receive money from Germany, it claims, adding that “six decades after the Holocaust,” and compared to other countries that were affected by it – “the reparations that Israel received were disproportionate.”

We must unequivocally condemn the Holocaust, the video says. “But Israel – who benefitted the most from the Holocaust – uses the same pretexts as the Nazis to commit ethnic cleansing against the Palestinians and eliminate them.”

Al-Jazeera later said it suspended the two journalists who produced the video in a statement published on its website Sunday.

“Al Jazeera completely disowns the offensive content in question and reiterated that Al Jazeera would not tolerate such material on any of the Network’s platforms,” Dr. Yaser Bishr the Executive Director of Digital Division said. Bishr also said that he called for a mandatory bias training and awareness program.

Many Twitter users were quick to condemn the video. Jenan Moussa of Dubai’s Al Aan TV compared the AJ+ Arabic post to a different one on its English-language counterpart, in which a Holocaust survivor tells his story.

Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs Spokesperson Emmanuel Nahshon wrote on Twitter Saturday that the AJ+ video “is the worst kind of pernicious evil. That’s how Al Jazeera brainwashes young people in the Arab world and perpetuates hatred of Israel and the Jews. Lies and evil propogated by the ideological descendants of ‘Der Stormer.'”

The Foreign Ministry’s Arabic-language Twitter account rebutted the video in a series of tweets, responding to each claim in the AJ+ post.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Arabic media spokesperson, Ofir Gendelman, also responded. AJ+ “aired an anti-Semitic video on the Holocaust, spreading lies about it & about Israel, specifically on Ramadan in order to incite the masses,” he wrote. “It’s been removed. We’ll keep fighting anti-Semitism on Arab media, including on [Al Jazeera Arabic] – an inciting propaganda machine.”

On Saturday evening, Al Jazeera’s public relations account acknowledged the removal of the post. It tweeted that “Al Jazeera Media Network deleted a video produced by AJ+ Arabic because it violated the editorial standards of the Network.”

Comments (2)

  • Andrew Clifford says:

    Great that JVL draws our attention to this but I think its introduction to the article lets Al Jazeera off the hook far too readily. I’m afraid I’m not so impressed by the fact that Al Jazeera ‘rapidly pulled’ this or that they ‘disown this offensive’ content as the current JVL introduction (to me) implies. How could it ever have been put up on the Al Jazeera website? Long enough for over a million people to watch it? It’s a disgusting, mealy-mouthed Holocaust-denying video and I would like a much less corporate, more outraged, proactive explanation from Al Jazeera than this article suggests has happened. Because JVL is often accused of almost being antisemitic itself, I think it needs to show that when serious and disgusting antisemitism does show itself we do not forgive lightly! Foregrounding at the start of the introduction how quickly the video was pulled and then ending with the dull apology by Al Jazeera to me feels like JVL is saying all is forgiven. It’s not.

  • Robert Bleeker says:

    1. Firstly I would heartily acclaim JVL for the rather sober – for rather factual – way of presenting this potentially highly sensitive news-subject.

    2. Secondly I would like to ask JVL to even move a step further in this matter, and try to enter into a kind of educated comment on the presented subject.

    3. That might be desirable, since Al Jazeera apparently has been forced to quickly remove the controversial video from the internet, so the public in general will not be able to judge the content of the video on its true merit themselves.

    4. What for example have been the (hopefully academic vs ideological / prejudicial) arguments used by the makers of the video, in favour of the presented suppositions and what have been the exact sources underpinning the arguments, that its composers have been launching in their video.

    5. Has this video been a classical anti-Semitic trope – and has it therefor been rightfully retracted and to be utterly condemned – or have the authors / composers been trying to open up a sincere (albeit somewhat naively pictured maybe) discussion on the subject.

    6. A discussion for example, not unlike Norman Finkelstein did (try to) start in 2000 (for example) by his book : “The Holocaust Industry: Reflections on the Exploitation of Jewish Suffering”.

    7. Another (controversial) author on the subject of the way the State of Israel has been created – Thomas Suarez with his book “State of Terror: How Terrorism Created Modern Israel” – also has been referring to a possible resemblance between the (horrific) white-supremacist nazi ideology (*) and the (perceived as such by some USA and UK observers at the time) zionist Jew-supremacist ideology.

    8. Another relevant question in this context, might be, whether the composers of the video have been referencing to the standard academic work on the organisation of the criminal
    Holocaust by Raul Hillberg.

    9. I also would like to know, whether the video has been meant to be a follow-up on the earlier publications of Al Jazeera (with information, partly covertly obtained) on the subject of the professional spreading through the world of sheer Hasbarah, by various Israeli governmental ministries.

    10. Again, I do really propose to you to give the public a decent analyses of the main positions (and intentions) of the video, because otherwise it will be the usual Hasbarah suspects, that will spin the message into their own propagandist advantage.

    (*) I do remember a shocking article that did reveal the rather disturbing circumstance, that the German nazi party, apparently did partly copy their abject racial theories from USA racist practises (and underlying ideology) towards the African-American inhabitants during the first half of the 20th century.

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