An outspoken Arab host calls Israel the most successful project of the 20th and 21st centuries. He spread the word to his 5.5 million followers on Twitter. Not surprisingly, it sparked intense debate about the Jewish state among his Twitter followers, writes the Times of Israel.
“For most Arabs, if they want to scold you, they will call you a ‘Zionist,’ even though they know the most successful project of the present and last century is the Zionist project,” Faisal wrote al- Qassem, host of the debate program The Opposite Direction on Al Jazeera.
Qassem has not been afraid to criticize Arab regimes on his television program and on his Twitter account for their anti-democratic policies.
“All the Arab projects, especially Arab nationalism, have failed. So before you use the word “Zionist” as an insult, you must familiarize yourself with what Zionism has accomplished. Then we can talk together “, the host continues,
One of those who criticizes the Twitter message is Meshaal al-Nami, a Kuwaiti researcher, who responds that Qassem and Al Jazeera act as “mercenaries for Zionism by spreading chaos and by frustrating Arabs and Muslims.” p>
But many also clearly agree with the message. Later, Qassem set up a survey in which he asked his millions of followers whether they thought Israel or Arab countries were the most “advanced, developed and democratic.” As many as 82% answered that it was Israel, while only 18% answered that it was Arab countries. Since the Twitter message was in Arabic, and most of Qassem’s followers are Arabs, it is likely that most of the respondents were also Arabs.
Recently, the popular host also made fun of Iran, who say they want to “liberate Jerusalem”. On his TV show, which has millions of viewers, he said no one wants Iran to liberate the city, according to the Times of Israel.
Al Jazeera is one of the few Arab television stations to invite Israeli officials as guests, but several of the channel’s directors are also very critical of Israel and especially Israel’s policy towards the Palestinians.