As far back as August 2007, HonestReporting was calling for the removal of London-based Abdel Bari Atwan, the editor-in-chief of Al-Quds Al-Arabi, as a guest analyst on both the BBC and Sky News among others.
At that time, Bari Atwan had stated on Lebanese TV: “If the Iranian missiles strike Israel, by Allah, I will go to Trafalgar Square and dance with delight” and expressed his hope that Iran would attack Israel in the event of a confrontation between the US and Iran.
In 2008, he said that the terrorist attack on Jerusalem’s Mercaz Harav Yeshiva on March 6 of that year was “justified” and that the religious seminary was responsible for “hatching Israeli extremists and fundamentalists.” In a lead article, he chose not to condemn the shooting attack and said the celebrations in Gaza that followed symbolized the “courage of the Palestinian nation.” He added that violence in Gaza might “mark the countdown to Israel’s destruction.”
The Times of Israel now reports that Bari Atwan has quit his position at Al-Quds Al-Arabi only weeks after a television interview in which he referred to Osama bin Laden as only “half a terrorist,” a position that led him to believe that he is banned from entering the United States.
So it’s bye bye Bari Atwan. He certainly won’t be missed by us but unfortunately, we won’t be betting against his reappearing on the screens of mainstream news channels in his spare time.
Now that Bari Atwan has left his post, it’s time for the BBC and Sky to make sure that he never appears for them again.