What about "we cannot see apples"? Can the "az" simply be there as an article without literally meaning "the"?
In many other languages, where English would use "Can", other languages simply state the verb. Like when you say "Nem beszélek kínaiul", which you would either say as "I don't speak Chinese" or "I can't speak Chinese". The above sentence can also simply be "We don't see apples" or even (although less common) "We aren't seeing apples".