The Rebel profiting from Quebec massacre while spreading fake news
The far-right media outlet The Rebel is raising funds to investigate the terror attack that killed six people in Quebec, claiming that the tragedy resulted from a bitter inter-mosque rivalry, even after the authorities identified 27-year-old Alexandre Bissonnette, a known right-wing troll, inspired by Marine Le Pen and Donald Trump, as the sole attacker.
“And that night, police took into custody two men — Alexandre Bissonnette, and Mohamed Khadir, a Muslim man,” the text of The Rebel’s fundraiser read. “The next morning, police released Khadir, saying he was no longer a suspect, but rather a witness. And they laid charges against Bissonnette, for murder.”
“What’s going on here?,” The Rebel, run by conservative commentator Ezra Levant, asks in the fundraiser. “What are the facts? And can we trust the mainstream media to tell us the truth about such a controversial and sensitive subject?”
“We don’t know all the facts yet. But unlike the CBC, we intend to uncover the truth, not bury it,” it adds. “So The Rebel sent Faith Goldy to Quebec City with a cameraman to report on the facts wherever they lead.”
Mohamed Belkhadir, the engineering student who called 911 but was mistakenly arrested by the authorities in the wake of the terrorist attack at the mosque in Sainte-Foy, was helping the victims when he was wrongly mistaken for a suspect.
“I went in to try to give first aid to my friend on the ground, and I saw someone with a weapon. I did not know that he was a policeman, I thought he was coming back to shoot. So I fled outside, on the parking side, “he told the La Press. “I understand, I respect that they caught me. They saw me flee, they thought I was suspicious, that’s normal. For them, someone who flees is a suspect.”
A judge ordered Levant to pay law student Khurrum Awan $80,000 in damages after the Reform Party politician turned pundit was found guilty of defamation in 2014.
Levant had described Awan as a “liar”, “stupid, a “fool”, “serial, malicious, money-grubbing liar”, “unequivocally implied that he was an anti-Semite and perjurer”.
Levant’s fundraising page has been shared more than 500 times on The Rebel’s own Facebook page and on other extreme right-wing pages.
Bissonnette, Laval University social sciences student from the Quebec City suburb of Cap-Rouge, has been charged with six counts of first-degree murder and five counts of attempted murder while using a restricted firearm.