Advertising on Terror TV

From Mark Dubowitz, Roberta Bonazzi, The Wall Street Journal, October 4, 2005:

In one episode of the 29-part Ramadan special “Al-Shatat, The Diaspora,” broadcast on Hizballah’s global satellite channel, al-Manar, a rabbi orders his young son to kidnap a Christian friend so that his throat can be slit and the blood drained to be used to make food for Passover. The rest of the series tells the usual anti-Semitic plot of alleged Jewish aspirations for world domination. Al-Manar routinely runs videos encouraging children to become suicide bombers, calls for terrorists to attack coalition soldiers in Iraq, and promises that “martyrs” will be rewarded in the afterlife.

While a large part of al-Manar’s operating budget comes from Iran, a significant portion is derived from ad revenue. A handful of multinational corporations still advertise on al-Manar, indirectly endorsing its message of hatred and violence. Within the past few months, al-Manar broadcast ads for products from Nissan, the Japanese car manufacturer; LG, the Korean electronics maker; Tefal, a producer of home cooking products and subsidiary of France-based Groupe SEB; Jovial, a manufacturer of Swiss watches; and Cellis-Alpha, a cellular SIM card provider owned by Fal Dete Telecommunications, a Saudi-German consortium majority-owned by Detecon, which in turn is a subsidiary of Deutsche Telekom.

European [and American] lives and values are under attack by Islamic extremists. Responsible companies should have no relationship with terrorist organizations. To do otherwise is to send a worrying signal to their customers, a message that seems to say that their lives are worth less than the sale of a few extra cars, watches, cellphones and home cooking products. At the very least, that cannot be good for business.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *