LONDON: An Al Arabiya presenter has gone viral on social media after slamming the Israeli military’s spokesperson for dictating what the broadcaster should say regarding the aggression against Gaza.
In an interview yesterday, Taher Baraka told his guest Avichay Adraee, the Israel Defense Forces’ Arabic-language spokesperson: “You do not get to dictate what we should say in Arab media.”
An excerpt from the interview was shared on X, with commentators commending Baraka for his response.
ضروري جدا مشاهدة هالفيديو. افيخاي ادرعي ما قدر يجاوب على سؤال اذا اسرائيل بتقبل بلجنة تحقيق دولية بخصوص استهداف المستشفى، هرب ٤ مرات من سؤال طاهر بركة ، واللي ضل مصر ياخد منه جواب، و افيخاي يتهرب. هذه المقابلة هي دلالة واضحة جدا ان اسراييل تكذب.
تحية لأدائك الممتاز، كالعادة،… pic.twitter.com/rAiPRyXcwL
— Dima ديما صادق (@DimaSadek) October 18, 2023
Baraka has also been praised by colleagues and social media users for challenging the IDF’s spokesperson during the same interview on the bombing of Al-Ahli Arab Hospital in Gaza, which took place on the evening of Oct. 17.
طاهر لأفيخاي أذرعي: لست أنت من يقرر ما نقول أو لا نقول عبر الاعلام العربي
أفيخاي: أنا أقترح
— Ammar Hendi | عمّار الـهندي (@AmmarHendi) October 18, 2023
Baraka asked his guest if Israel would agree to an international investigation into the targeting of the hospital.
Adraee avoided the question and instead said that Israel based its claim that it was not responsible for the incident on “four factors, the first of which is that no raid was carried out — not by land, not by sea, and not by air — in that area at that time.”
Baraka repeated his question: “Since Israel is confident it did not carry out the raid, would it agree to (cooperate with) an international investigation commission?”
The IDF spokesperson skirted the question a second time, accusing Hamas of being the only party to commit war crimes during the current conflict.
Baraka persisted, however, and requested that Adraee focus on the matter at hand.
After Adraee evaded the question for a third time, stressing that Israel was “at war with terrorism,” Baraka said: “So you do not agree to (cooperate with) an international investigation commission because you have doubts. You are not confident in your narrative.”
The IDF official insisted he was confident in the Israeli narrative, describing it as “a truth.”
Baraka interjected: “Then why would you not state on air now that Israel’s official stance is to agree (to an international investigation)?
“Why not state it, and we will have breaking news that Israel consents to an international investigation commission, or share your own opinion as the Israeli military’s spokesperson that the IDF consents?”
Eventually, the Al Arabiya presenter accused Adraee of “clearly avoiding” the question about an international investigation commission because Israel “is not confident” in its narrative.
“If you were confident, you would have consented to an international investigation commission,” Baraka said.
A blast at the Al-Ahli Arab Hospital in Gaza killed at least 500 Palestinians amid Israel’s unrelenting airstrikes in Gaza. Humanitarian organizations and several world leaders condemned the attack as a flagrant violation of international humanitarian law.