Weekend long read

BBC Watch

1) At the Jewish Chronicle, Yiftah Curiel presents his analysis of the recent BBC programme ostensibly relating to the Jerusalem light rail system in an article titled “Why Panorama went off the rails“.Weekend Read

“When Wishart visits an East Jerusalem neighbourhood he witnesses a violent attack on an Israeli checkpoint; a young boy praises in Arabic those who are “attacking the soldiers, the Jews”, translated to BBC audiences as “attacking the soldiers”. In what has become a worrying trend recently at the BBC, rather than see these statements for what they are – symptoms of widespread institutional incitement within Palestinian society – editors make do with telling us that “when they say ‘Jews’, they mean ‘Israelis'”.”

2) Tablet magazine has an interesting interview with Israeli diplomat George Deek.

“He spoke slowly and softly, as someone who had given much thought to the issue. He said that his grandfather’s…

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The significance of the BBC’s promotion of Peter Oborne’s Brotherhood washing

BBC Watch

h/t JK

Much of the landmark speech on combating extremism delivered by the British prime minister on July 20th focused – naturally – on the issue of tackling extremist ideology.

“But you don’t have to support violence to subscribe to certain intolerant ideas which create a climate in which extremists can flourish. […]

…ideas also based on conspiracy: that Jews exercise malevolent power; or that Western powers, in concert with Israel, are deliberately humiliating Muslims, because they aim to destroy Islam. […]

First, any strategy to defeat extremism must confront, head on, the extreme ideology that underpins it. We must take its component parts to pieces – the cultish worldview, the conspiracy theories, and yes, the so-called glamorous parts of it as well. 

In doing so, let’s not forget our strongest weapon: our own liberal values. We should expose their extremism for what it is – a belief system…

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More misleading BBC reporting on Tisha B’Av Temple Mount rioting

BBC Watch

In addition to the written report (since slightly, but not significantly, amended) about the rioting on Temple Mount on July 26th which appeared on the BBC News website’s Middle East page and was discussed here, BBC television news audiences saw two filmed reports on the same topic.

Both reports also appeared on the BBC News website. The earlier one – by Mariko Oi – is titled “Palestinians and Israeli police clash at al-Aqsa mosque” and, like the written report, its synopsis misleads audiences on cause and effect, erasing the premeditated nature of the violence.AAM 26 7 filmed 1

“Palestinian youths have clashed with Israeli police who have entered the al-Aqsa mosque complex in East Jerusalem.

The Palestinians are understood to have barricaded themselves into the mosque on Saturday.

Israeli media said the Palestinians had intended to disrupt visits to the area known to Jews as the Temple Mount.”

The filmed…

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One to watch out for on BBC Radio 4

BBC Watch

This coming Monday evening, August 3rd, BBC Radio 4 will broadcast a programme titled “Women of Terror“. Its synopsis reads as follows:R4 Women of Terror

“From Russia’s 19th century Nihilists to contemporary Sri Lanka and Palestine women have played central roles in terrorist organisations. Attacks planned or executed by women attract attention and inspire fear in a way that male terrorists can only dream of.

Why are we still shocked by female terrorists? Why are they so effective? How can women be dissuaded from joining terrorist organisations? BBC Diplomatic Correspondent, Bridget Kendall investigates the motives that drive women to kill and considers the response of the media and the public to those who have planted bombs, hijacked planes and killed innocents in their quest for political change.”

The claim that the programme “considers the response of the media […] to those who have planted bombs, hijacked planes and killed innocents…”…

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Financial Times perpetuates the myth of “sealed off” Gaza

UK Media Watch

An article at the Financial Times written by their Jerusalem correspondent John Reed (Extreme remote working at Gaza’s ‘weird news’ bureau’, July 29th) focuses on a Gazan named Rawa Othman.  Othman’s job, according to Reed, involves “scanning the shallows of the internet in search of what he calls ‘the weirdest news'”, working remotely for the Saudi owned Abu Nawaf Network.

However, the story isn’t about one unusual job. Reed uses this example of a Gazan employed by a client based in another country – and the broader problem of high unemployment in the Palestinian-controlled territory – to highlight Gaza’s ‘isolation’ from the rest of the world.

This is no ordinary workplace: Mr Othman translates weird news in a high-rise in the Gaza Strip, the Palestinian enclave ruled by the militant Islamist group Hamas. Gaza is sealed off from the world by an Israeli naval and aerial blockade, and…

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.@Guardian leaves false impression that #Christian population in #Israel has declined

UK Media Watch

On Monday, July 27th, the Guardianpublishedthreereports on the persecution of Christians around the world. 

Two of the reports – including ‘Dying for Christianity‘ by the Guardian’s former Jerusalem correspondent Harriet Sherwood – don’t mention Israel. However, the third report– co-written by several reporters, including the Guardian’s current Jerusalem correspondent Peter Beaumont – included a section on anti-Christian persecution (mostly vandalism and arsons targeting churches and mosques) in the Jewish state.

The report included a section on Israel despite the fact that the state was not included in their list (in the report shown above) of top 25 most anti-Christian countries. 

Here’s one passage from Beaumont’s report:

While Christians across the Middle East have come increasingly under assault in recent years – most often by jihadis – the attacks in the Holy Land itself, whose Christian population is dwindling, have a particular resonance

This of course…

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BBC’s Knell flouts impartiality guidelines with failure to inform on Susiya interviewee’s day job

BBC Watch

In recent days the BBC Jerusalem Bureau’s Yolande Knell has produced two very similar reports on different platforms concerning illegally built structures in the South Hebron Hills.

On July 25th an article appeared in the ‘Features’ section of the BBC News website’s Middle East page under the title “Susiya: Palestinian West Bank village faces bleak end“, where it remained for three consecutive days.Knell Susiya

The July 26th edition of the BBC World Service radio programme ‘Newshour’ – presented by Julian Marshall – included a report (from 30:10 here) on the same topic by Knell. In his introduction to that audio report, Marshall states:

“Earlier this year Israel’s High Court ruled against an injunction by residents of Susiya trying to stop Israeli demolition orders. Now, before an appeal is heard, they’ve been told to expect their homes to be destroyed any day.”

That portrayal is inaccurate and…

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