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Fact Checking Media Claims of Israel’s Anti-Christian Bias

Fact Checking Media Claims of Israel’s Anti-Christian Bias

Number of Christian worshipers limited based on church’s own security assessment. Similar restrictions also on Jewish pilgrims at Mount Meron.

After decades of ignoring the real genocide and persecution of Christians at the hands of jihadists across the Middle East, Asia, and Africa, the mainstream media found the chutzpah to accuse Israel of ‘anti-Christian’ bias during this year’s Easter celebrations.

Several mainstream media outlets accused Israeli authorities of using the pretext of security to restrict Christian pilgrims from taking part in the traditional Easter festivities in Jerusalem.

“Israeli police have limited the number of pilgrims who can attend Christian celebrations, including the ‘Holy Fire’ ceremony, irrespective of the security situation,” the Qatari state TV Al Jazeera claimed on April 12.

Other news outlets used the opportunity to attack their favorite targets: Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s “right-wing” government and Jewish “settlers” in the Holy Land.

“The increase in anti-Christian incidents comes as the Israeli settler movement, galvanised by its allies in government, appears to have seized the moment to expand its enterprise in the contested capital,” the UK newspaper Guardian reported on April 23.

“Hostility towards minority Christians is nothing new in the teeming Old City, a crucible of tension that the Israeli government annexed in 1967,” the leftist British newspaper added.

The Associated Press almost echoed The Guardian, claiming the “scorn heaped upon minority Christians is nothing new in the teeming Old City, a crucible of tension that the Israeli government annexed in 1967.”

However, a simple fact-check would have clarified the matter. The restriction on the number of worshipers at the Holy Fire ceremony was made in keeping with the assessment of the church authorities, the Israeli authorities explained.

On April 13, the Israeli police clarified in a statement (obtained by Legal Insurrection) that “limiting the number of participants is not a result of a police initiative, but a necessary safety requirement, according to the professional analysis of the safety engineer on behalf of the churches.”

“A few days ago, the church forwarded the report of the safety engineer on their behalf, which refers to the maximum audience capacity allowed in the site – the opinion that binds everyone without exception,” the statement further said.

Correcting the media narrative, the Israel-based watchdog Honest Reporting reported on April 16:

As Easter celebrations in the Holy Land culminated in the Holy Fire ritual on Saturday, the international media jumped at the opportunity to lambast Israel with discredited allegations of poor treatment of Christians by authorities. (…)

Publications to run similar pieces included: The Guardian, TRT World, Associated Press, Middle East Eye, and others, all emphasizing Israeli authorities as being both responsible for imposing and enforcing crowd size restrictions during Easter.

However, an April 3 letter signed by Teo Metropoulos, the church architect of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, which was leaked on Friday, claims the restrictions on crowd capacity are actually due to the church itself — and not Israeli police.

Jewish pilgrims face similar restrictions

As it turns out, similar security restrictions are placed on Jewish worshipers as well. The Israeli authorities have drastically limited the number of pilgrims allowed at Mount Meron during the upcoming festival of Lag BaOmer.

The Israeli TV channel i24news reported on April 17:

Drastic changes are being implemented at Mount Meron, two years after the tragic stampede that left 45 people dead and many more injured. With over 250,000 Jewish worshippers expected to visit the holy site to mark the Lag BaOmer holiday in three weeks, authorities are planning to severely limit the level of access.

This year, Minister of Heritage and Jerusalem Meir Porush has taken responsibility for the event and has planned for the festivities to be held outside the Meron cemetery complex.

During the 27 hours of festivities, tickets will be sold to approximately 200,000 people who will be able to arrive only via public transport, and each ticket will allow a visitor to stay on the site for up to 5 hours.

BBC reportedly uses fake footage to smear Israel

While violent Muslim gangs rampaged on the Temple Mount and Palestinian terrorists carried out a wave of deadly terrorist attacks targeting Israeli Jews, the BBC reportedly used fake footage to stoke Jew-hatred over Easter.

The BBC nightly news aired a clip showing Orthodox Jews allegedly spitting on Christian nuns in the Old City of Jerusalem.

The Twitter community note explained that the “video appears to show an Orthodox Jewish man responding to a racist comment from a bystander who says, ‘Hail Hitler’ as they pass by,” but establishment media outlets like the BBC, which have a history of anti-Israel bias, did their best to steer Western public opinion against Israel.

The Honest Reporting reported on April 16:

The BBC aired a report on its nightly news bulletins about heightened tensions in Israel that included footage of an Orthodox Jew allegedly spitting on Christian nuns in the Old City.

However, the clip’s contents have been disputed enough that Twitter has added a context box to the footage, with analysis suggesting that a bystander who appears to say “Heil Hitler” is more likely to have been the target of the group of Jewish men rather than the nuns.


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Meanwhile, anti-Christian genocide continues unnoticed in parts of Africa and Asia.

Bias, not bais

We can count on Vijeta to provide context!! 👍🏼

JackinSilverSpring | April 22, 2023 at 11:52 pm

The Leftist media lie about anything that does fit the narrative de jour. This is just part of the pattern.

Sad to say, Breitbart published its own version of this theme a couple of weeks ago. It blamed a declining Christian population in “the West Bank״ on Jews. It was shocking.