MSNBC Removes Some Anchors After Israel Attack

Following the tragic and horrifying Hamas attacks on October 7, which resulted in the heartbreaking loss of over 1,200 Israelis, the broadcasting landscape appears to be adjusting. MSNBC, a prominent news network, has quietly made changes to its lineup by pulling some of its Muslim anchors away from the spotlight.

Three of these broadcasters, Ali Velshi, Ayman Mohyeldin, and Mehdi Hasan, were former Al-Jazeera staffers. While the network does not question their in-depth knowledge of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, critics argue their perspectives often lean too sympathetically toward Hamas. As a case in point, Mohyeldin recently aired the Hamas perspective on Velshi’s show, saying, “Hamas is saying, well, if nobody is able to defend, then we only can do it with military might and crude weapons.”

Conversely, Velshi hosted a Palestinian pundit who urged viewers to move away from the “good guy vs bad guy” narrative and “look at the bigger picture.” These stances have ignited fiery debates across conservative media circles, with some suggesting these anchors might as well be “broadcasting on Al-Jazeera.”

Dan Abrams of NewsNation didn’t mince words in his assessment of MSNBC’s coverage. Pointing fingers at anchors like Mohyeldin, Hasan, and Velshi, Abrams criticized their insinuation that the heinous Hamas attacks were the product of “failed policies” by Israel and the U.S. He declared, “The policies that somehow justify or even explain the slaughter of innocent civilians.” Taking it further, Abrams mocked MSNBC’s sudden appreciation for “context and nuance,” insinuating double standards in the network’s approach to different stories.

MSNBC’s moves have drawn the attention of its internal staff. Media reporter Maxwell Tani highlighted that some within MSNBC expressed concerns, noting that “all three hosts have some of the deepest knowledge of the conflict.” The network, however, labeled these moves as “coincidental.” Despite this, schedules reflected the shift; a Thursday night episode of The Mehdi Hasan Show was not aired, and Ayman Mohyeldin’s expected appearance on Joy Reid’s show was shelved.

The internal discord at MSNBC became even more evident when an NBC producer organized a support session for Israel with a rabbi. An immediate protest from a Velshi producer questioned the lack of Palestinian representation, underscoring the tension within the network’s ranks.

While MSNBC claims these schedule changes are coincidental, the timing, following the October 7 Hamas attacks, raises eyebrows.