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Apprentice star needn’t apologise for posts on ‘godless, satanic’ Zionism – he’s right

February 14, 2024 at 9:58 am

Contestant of 18th season of British reality show ‘The Apprentice’, Dr. Asif Munaf [BBC]

Even before the 18th season of the BBC’s “The Apprentice” aired at the beginning of this month, it stirred controversy after several social media posts by one contestant, Dr Asif Munaf, attracted media attention. They related to Israel’s genocidal war against the Palestinians in Gaza and the ideology on which the apartheid state was founded, Zionism.

In the pre-recorded series, the former NHS doctor who runs a wellness supplement brand based in Sheffield has made it to the third week. The boys’ team has now lost for a second consecutive week, and Munaf has survived his first boardroom grilling from Lord Alan Sugar, in part by volunteering to be the Project Manager for the following week, which will be shown on Thursday.

Munaf had a previous unsuccessful stint on the same channel’s “Dragons’ Den” programme, and has so far proven to be one of the more popular, standout contestants among viewers of “The Apprentice”. Nevertheless, no matter how far the doctor lasts in the elimination process, it is clear that his outspoken online views about Zionism were enough to warrant action by the BBC, which was, no doubt, alerted to them by pro-Israel activists accusing him of being anti-Semitic.

“After filming had taken place, we were made aware of concerns over social media posts that Asif had made after he had left the process,” a spokesman for the show told the Telegraph. “As soon as we were alerted, we took immediate action and spoke to Asif in detail on this. Asif took part in specialised training to understand why his posts may cause offence. We are committed to providing an inclusive environment on and off screen.”

A source was also quoted as saying, “Had this content been posted before filming took place, Asif would not have been included in the show.”

Munaf in turn issued the following statement: “I apologise for any offence caused by my online content/social media. It was not my intention to offend anyone, and I am of course open to all views. The beliefs I hold and have shared are based on the values that I was brought up with.”

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Clearly, his “apology” was neither wholehearted nor unreserved, although he acknowledged some may have found his remarks offensive. As someone in the public eye, at least temporarily, it is understandable that Munaf needed to make the statement, but it is worth noting that he has also distinguished Zionism from what he described as “core Judaic values,” accusing the former of being “inherently anti-Semitic” and “the worst form of anti-Semitism.”

Crucially, though, anti-Zionist beliefs are to be protected in the workplace, as established in the landmark case earlier this month involving Professor David Miller, who claimed successfully that he had been discriminated against because of his belief that Zionism is inherently racist, imperialist and colonial.

In one of his posts on X in October, 10 days after the launch of the Palestinian resistance Operation Al-Aqsa Flood and the ensuing and ongoing Israeli military offensive against Gaza, Manaf described Zionism as a “godless, satanic cult”.

This is one of the comments that was picked up on by the media, including Jewish outlets such as the Jewish Chronicle, Jewish News and the Jewish News Syndicate, which lamented the fact that he has continued to post about Zionism and Israel, in spite of his apology: “If Munaf’s posts in the past two days are any indication, he doesn’t appear to be particularly repentant,” the Syndicate noted on 1 February.

In the same post he said, “They are preparing the world very nicely for the trial on the antichrist.” In another post, after the apology, he spoke of his concerns as a father for his sons: “I pray they are strong enough physically, spiritually and psychologically to overcome the trial of the Zionist antichrist.”

Even these comments shouldn’t be deemed controversial, when understood in the context of Islamic eschatology, which maintains that given the Jews’ rejection of Prophet Jesus as the Messiah, their awaited “messiah” will be the False Messiah, Masih Al-Dajjal, whose initial followers, according to narrations, will be Jews.

The occupation state’s actions speak for themselves; Munaf was right to describe Zionism as “godless” and “satanic”.

Even disregarding 75 years of brutal military occupation, and four months of relentless, cruel bombardment of Palestinian civilians in Gaza, there has been enough evidence of the barbarism of the Zionist Israeli army over the past few days. Take, for example, the killing of six-year-old Hind Rajab as well as the two paramedics who went to her rescue; the mother shot and killed by a sniper, who also seriously injured her young son; and the gut-wrenching, horrific image of 12-year-old Sidra Hassouna whose shredded remains were left hanging on the wall of her home, with her legs blown off by the Israeli bombardment. This and much, much more has been carried out by a Zionist army which proclaims itself to be the “most moral” in the world. Anyone who believes that monstrous lie is delusional.

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Objectively-speaking, can anyone with an ounce of compassion view the actions of the Zionist entity as anything but godless and satanic? What other state in the world claims to be a democracy and yet sanctions the torture of Palestinians prisoners, including children? What other state in the world wages a war in this manner against civilians? The genocidal campaign has now claimed the lives of almost 30,000 people in Gaza, with tens of thousands wounded and maimed. Almost 20,000 children have been orphaned. All of this has been done with the blessing of the Zionist leadership, not only in Israel, but also around the world. They are unrepentant and complicit in this genocide.

That Judaism has no consensus on the existence of an afterlife, and therefore divine accountability in a hereafter, doesn’t help matters, considering the unhinged and depraved behaviour of Israel’s army, politicians, media and society at large. The Israeli military has recently admitted to being behind a Telegram channel featuring snuff videos, glorifying violence against Palestinians, as part of its psychological warfare unit.

So, when a recent video featuring an Israeli sorceress literally trying to cast a black magic spell on the leader of Hamas in Gaza, Yahya Sinwar, went viral, it wouldn’t be far-fetched to speculate that it was part of state-backed propaganda, known as hasbara. It is unsurprising to learn that support for the secular, self-proclaimed Jewish state among young US Evangelicals has plummeted by over 50 per cent in just three years.

As one of Britain’s most prominent Jewish businessmen and entrepreneurs, Lord Alan Sugar is Munaf’s boss in “The Apprentice”, and a potential investor in his wellness business. This is both ironic and awkward, but it is important to note that Sugar has been noticeably silent on the controversy and, indeed, Israel’s war in Gaza. Despite identifying as an atheist, albeit one who is “very strongly Jewish”, Sugar was once quoted by the Jewish Chronicle as saying: “I don’t have any loyalty to Israel. Obviously, I sympathise with them, and from time to time disagree with them.”

Munaf shouldn’t have had to apologise for stating something that is glaringly evident and impossible to refute. Being taken to the International Court of Justice for committing genocide isn’t exactly good PR for the Zionist state.

Increasingly, people are realising that Zionism, as a secular, European colonial ideology, is not inherently divine or religious; that it is, rather, quite the opposite. I wish Dr Asif Munaf all the best as this week’s Project Manager on “The Apprentice”, and for the remainder of the series.

MEMO has contacted Dr Munaf for comment.

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The views expressed in this article belong to the author and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of Middle East Monitor.