Why am I writing so many articles about #FakeNews at the Toronto Star and focusing on one article? Because the complaints sent to the publisher, public editor, and reporter about facts and the gross omission of facts were ignored. And this, for me, is at the heart of unethical journalism-the omission of facts; especially after those facts were provided.
Jennifer Yang, the reporter, contacted Lt. Col. (Ret.) Jonathan Halevi on July 25, 2017. He responded on July 25, 2017 to her inquiry:
“Ayman Elkasrawy’s posts on social media may help you a great deal in your research.”
Why did the Toronto Star ignore Ayman Elkasrawy’s negative comments about Jews, Israel, Zionists and the Zionist lobby? Why didn’t the Toronto Star investigate Elkasrawy’s rush to “delete” his Facebook account as a suspicious behaviour? Is the Toronto Star hiding something?
I contacted John Boytnon,Publisher, Bob Hepburn, Media Inquiries, Kathy English, public editor and Jennifer Yang, reporter many, many, many times. No answer. No explanation. Nothing.
On October 22, 2017, the Toronto Star dedicated four pages, including its front page, in an attempt to exonerate Ayman Elkasrawy, an imam at “Masjid Toronto” mosque, from anti-Jewish and anti-infidel prayers during Ramadan 2016. It is filled with errors in fact and the gross omission of facts.
Jennifer Yang wrote in her article: “Elkasrawy says he agreed to speak with the Star because “I have nothing to hide.” She emphasized that the “context is key in determining the appropriate translation.”
Yang added: “Elkasrawy says he agreed to speak with the Star because “I have nothing to hide.”
I am enclosing some of Ayman Elkasrawy’s social media posts that directly or indirectly mention or deal with the Jews, Israel, Zionists and the Zionist lobby. You decide.
Does he have something to hide?
On April 2, 2013 Ayman Elkasrawy used the word the “Jew” in an allegedly derogatory context. In this tweet Elkasrawy mocked Egyptian television host Dr. Bassem Youssef by saying, among other things, that “the Jew is defending him.” Elkasrawy did not elaborate the identity of “the Jew”, but from the context it may refer to Israel or to Abdul Fattah Sissi, then the Chief Commander of the Egyptian Armed Forces and Minister of Defense. Within Egyptian Islamist circles Sissi is called in a derogatory context “the son of the Jewish woman”.
January 21, 2017 – Ayman Elkasrawy shared Anti NWO [New World Order] Alliance’s photo featuring American Presidents Donald Trump and Barack Obama with the caption “NEW BOSS, OLD BOSS” and underneath another photo featuring David Rockefeller [perceived by some conspiracy theorists as Jewish], Jacob Rothschild [Jewish banker] and Guy de Rothschild [Jewish banker] with the caption “SAME OWNERS”. Anti NWO Alliance added: “Thoughts?”. The Anti NWO Alliance Facebook page shares conspiracy theories, including claiming that the 9/11 attack was an inside job. Another meme read: “The Rothschilds still have black slaves [accompanied with a picture of President Barack Obama].”
October 28, 2015 – Ayman Elkasrawy shared a link to a YouTube video entitled “9/11 – Israel’s Advance Knowledge of Attacks”. Elkasrawy “Liked” this video on his YouTube channel. This conspiracy theory video was later removed by YouTube. It is available here.
November 10, 2016 – Ayman Elkasrawy shared a video dealing with the US presidential elections. He added the following comment (originally in Arabic): “An important and useful episode… shows the lie of the American democracy (in terms of electing candidates by the people)… and shows the staggering amount of loopholes that explain how the Zionist lobby can control the presidency of America and who comes to it [becomes a President]!!!”
April 17, 2012 – Ayman Elkasrawy tweeted (originally in Arabic): “The election committee announces the names of candidates chosen by the United States and Israel. Farouk Sultan will announce the victory of Amr Moussa over them and will become the President of Egypt !!!”
February 11, 2016 – Ayman Elkasrawy shared كلنا خالد سعيد – نسخة كل المصريين’s photo adding the following comment (originally in Arabic): “We have said it a long time ago that the [United Arab] Emirates are the Zionists of the Arabs!!!!”
April 10, 2016 – Ayman Elkasrawy called Israel a “usurping enemy.” (originally in Arabic)
On May 27, 2015 Ayman Elkasrawy retweeted the following message byمحمد منتصر @montaseregy (originally in Arabic): “This is our religion and these are our scholars. Egypt is calling, we will not go back. Being loyal to the Zionist aggressors,supporting and protecting them and being hostile to the Palestinian resistance/ struggle/ fight [muqawamah] and conspiring against it, and imposing a siege on it by destroying Sinai [Peninsula] and displacing its people, is a betrayal of the religion [Islam] and the homeland [Egypt].”
September 28, 2016 – Ayman Elkasrawy shared a YouTube video featuring Turkey’s President Erdogan confronting Israel’s President Shimon Peres at the World Economic Forum in Davos and added the following comment (originally in Arabic): “This is the only beautiful memory from the life of the deceased butcher [Shimon] Peres.”
February 24, 2016 – Ayman Elkasrawy shared an article entitled “Muslim MPs Stayed On The Sidelines As Parliament Condemned Boycotts Of Israel” adding the following comment (originally in English): “So shocking!”
December 13, 2016 – Ayman Elkasrawy shared Dar Al-Tawheed Islamic Centre’s photo featuring an ad inviting the public to attended a lecture by the “renowned scholar from Egypt” Shaykh Nash’at Ahmad.
According to Al Jazeera Center for Studies, Shaykh Nash’at Ahmad is affiliated with the Egyptian Salafi movement which was subjected to security restrictions and even arrest and trial in various cases related to fatwas, or Islamic edicts, urging the support of Mujahideen (Muslims who engage in jihad) in Palestine and justifying the 9/11 attacks. Shaykh Nash’at Ahmad is also known for his anti-Jewish sermons:
“O Allah, destroy the Jews and whom they ally with… count their number; slay them one by one and spare not one of them”; “O Allah, destroy the Jews and all others who support them in countries around the world”; “O Allah, purify the Muslims lands from their filth and squalor, O Allah liberate the imprisoned Al-Aqsa [mosque]”; “ Allah, destroy the aggressors who are the Jews and those who support them”; “O Allah don’t give the infidel or the oppressor a way to overcome us… Destroy the Jews, the Christians, the Americans, the Europeans, the Shiites, the Communists, the Russians, the Hindus, the traitors, the oppressors and the criminals”; “O Allah, return the Muslims countries to the Muslims and purify [the Muslim lands] from the filth of the infidels and the polytheists [also identified by Muslim scholars as Christians].”
Ayman Elkasrawy also “Liked” the following videos on his YouTube channel:
- “The Lion of Palestine, the martyr Abdel Aziz Rantisi. Words that history will preserve forever. We will win, Allah willing” [originally in Arabic] – The almost 9 minute video clip features a compilation of some of some of the most fiery speeches by Abdel Aziz Al-Rantisi, co-founder of Hamas and later the supreme leader of Hamas (2004). In these speeches Rantisi vowed to continue the jihad against Israel, including by attacking Israeli cities and communities that at that time during the al-Aqsa Intifada were targeted by hundreds of Palestinian suicide bombers and attackers.
- “Undermine the security of Israel, like an earthquake” [originally in Arabic]. The song clip was produced by al-Qassam Brigades, the “military” wing of Hamas that is designated by Canada as a terrorist organization. It was was later removed by YouTube, but still available here. The clip features Palestinian rockets attacks on Israel by Hamas and Islamic Jihad. The lyrics of the al-Qassam Brigades’ song read: “Attack, carry out operations… kill all Zionists… undermine the security of Israel, set it on fire, destroy it, even its foundations… drive out all Zionists.”
- A video featuring Saudi Imam Muhammad Al-Arifi reciting a supplication in which he said: “O Allah, give victory to the mujahideen in Greater Syria. O Allah give victory to our brothers in Palestine over the usurping Jews.”
So I asked the Star “Why didn’t the Toronto Star publish Ayman Elkasrawy’s social media posts and “Likes” on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube that directly or indirectly mention or deal with the Jews, Israel, Zionists and the Zionist lobby?
I also asked questions of Ayman Elkasrawy:
Please explain why did you share and post the Facebook posts and tweets mentioned in the article?
You stated: “I have nothing to hide”. Why did you change on August 6, 2018 the status of your tweets into “protected” which means that only your 40 (forty) followers can have access to read them?
Why did you remove on August 6, 2018 all Likes from your YouTube Channel?
Screenshots of Ayman Elkasrawy’s social media posts are available here
And in return I received from all:
From the Ethics of the Fathers: “Rabbi Tarfon used to say, it is not incumbent upon you to complete the task, but you are not exempt from undertaking it.”