Al Jazeera VP: ‘Israel supporters should die a fiery death’

Posted by on Apr 30, 2015 at 8:01 am

Hard ti imagine someone from such an impartial, reputable news organization would say something so incendiary.

A sacked employee of Al Jazeera in New York is suing his former boss over claims he made misogynistic, anti-Semitic and anti-American comments in the newsroom.

Matthew Luke, who began working at Al Jazeera America in 2013 before its U.S. launch, is alleging that he was fired after complaining about the behaviour of senior employee Osman Mahmud.

In a complaint filed at the Manhattan Supreme Court, Mr Luke alleges that Mahmud once told staff: ‘Whoever supports Israel should die a fiery death in hell.’

Mr Luke also claims he was forced to remove women from meetings and email messages that were relevant to them, and replace them with men.

In another incident, he says Mahmud also ordered that an experienced Israeli cameraman should be removed from a project and replaced with a Palestinian who had ‘questionable’ qualifications.

Mr Luke is claiming a total of $15million in damages, $5million in compensation for his dismissal, and $10million in punitive damages.

American-born Mr Luke says Mahmud was first hired by the new channel in early 2013 as a news editor, but was quickly promoted to senior vice president of broadcast operations and technology.

He said this move was despite Mahmud’s ‘lack of experience’, and was instead because he had the right ‘religion, nationality and ties’ to seniors in Al Jazeera, according to the New York Daily News.

Specifically, court papers site his connection as Dr. Mostefa Souag, who is currently Acting Director General of Al Jazeera Media Network and Managing Director of Al Jazeera News Channel.

Mahmud’s new role meant he became Mr Luke’s boss, and Mr Luke alleges that in his first day on the job Mahmud ordered him to remove two women from an email chain for a project he was working on.

According to court papers, Mahmud also ordered Mr Luke to bypass a senior female editor, and bring any questions on the editing process to him instead.

In November 2014, Mahmud allegedly ‘took it upon himself’ to fire an editor working on the Al Jazeera America program ‘America Tonight’, reports the Wall Street Journal.

When a female senior executive complained that she had not been consulted about the move, Mahmud became aggressive and then dismissive of her, despite her outranking him.

Gee, you mean these anti-Semitic creeps also hate women? Imagine that. Well, he’s sure to have a future at MSNBC is things don’t go his way at Al Jazeera.

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