BBC WS radio on US withdrawal from UNESCO – part two

BBC Watch

The BBC World Service radio programme ‘Business Matters’ describes itself as providing listeners with “global business news“. Apparently that type of news was in short supply on October 13th because the day’s lead story was entirely unrelated to that topic.

“Israel has followed the US in announcing its intention to leave Unesco, the UN’s cultural organisation. We examine the reasons why and ask what it means for Unesco’s future.”

The caption to the photograph used to illustrate the programme’s webpage reads as follows:

“Picture: the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound in Jerusalem’s Old City”

As readers may recall, the employment of the term “Al Aqsa Mosque compound” – rather than the BBC style guide stipulated titles Temple Mount and Haram al Sharif – was first seen in November 2014 immediately after the PLO published a ‘media advisory’ document informing foreign journalists of its “[c]oncern over the use of the inaccurate…

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BBC News ignores missile attack from Sinai for fifth time this year

BBC Watch

Late on the evening of October 15th residents of the Eshkol district in southern Israel had to scramble to their air-raid shelters after the alarm signalling incoming missiles was sounded.

“Two rockets were fired at southern Israel from the Sinai Peninsula on Sunday night, likely by an affiliate of the Islamic State terrorist group, the army said.

There were no immediate reports of injury or damage.

The two rockets were aimed at the southern Eshkol region, an area that abuts both the Gaza Strip and the Sinai Peninsula, the army said.

A military spokesperson said one of them had been located in an open field near the communities of Magen and Ein Habasor, but that soldiers and police were still looking for the second.”

The second missile was later found to have landed in the nearby Gaza Strip and the following day the attack was claimed by the ISIS…

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BBC WS radio on US withdrawal from UNESCO – part one

BBC Watch

As we saw in a previous post, the BBC News website’s reporting on the October 12th announcement from the US State Department regarding withdrawal from UNESCO did not provide BBC audiences with the background information essential for understanding of one of the three cited reasons for that action – anti-Israel bias. Rather, in addition to repeatedly placing that phrase in scare quotes, the article told readers of “perceived anti-Israel bias” at an organisation that passed no fewer than 46 anti-Israel resolutions between 2009 and 2013.

So did listeners to BBC World Service radio fare any better? The same story was the topic of an item aired in the October 12th edition of the programme ‘Newshour‘ which was introduced by presenter Tim Franks (from 17:57 here) as follows:

[emphasis in italics in the original, emphasis in bold added]

Franks: “The US has announced it’s pulling…

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Guardian’s Donald Macintyre waves Hamas flag by sneakily quoting from his own book.

UK Media Watch

By Richard Millett, London.

It seems the Guardian is resorting to favouriting its own journalism. Maybe there aren’t many objective commentators who will do it for them?

First, it endorses its own anti-Israel playMy Name is Rachel Corrie. Now Donald Macintyre is heavily plugging his own forthcoming book in the Guardian. In this latest article by him, in which he is waving the flag of Hamas (metaphorically speaking), he quotes sources from his own book without telling us he’s the book’s author.

This latest anti-Israel activism journalism centres on how he thinks everything for Gazans could have been so much better if only Hamas had been treated with more respect. In one hilarious comment (hilarious if only it wasn’t so tragic) Macintyre quotes from Whitehall documents of 2006 which stated that instead of ostracising Hamas after their election win in 2005:

“ultimately Hamas’s participation in the…

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BBC promotes context-free report on injured Gazans

BBC Watch

October 13th 2017 saw the appearance of a filmed report titled “Gaza amputees explain their unique friendship” on the BBC News website’s Middle East page. A slightly different version of the same video was also posted on the BBC Arabic website the following day.

“After suffering injuries in Israeli air strikes, Mansour and Adly formed a special friendship.”

The subtitles to the video tell BBC audiences:

“My name is Mansour Gurn. I’m 24. My name is Adly Obaid. I’m 25.

Mansour lost his leg in August 2011 after an Israeli airstrike. Adly lost his leg 7 months later in March 2012 in a similar attack.”

Seeing as the video is uncredited it is unclear how the BBC came across this story or why it decided to produce a filmed report at this particular time. However, this is not the first time that the two friends from the

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BBC policy on portrayal of UN anti-Israel bias on display again

BBC Watch

The October 12thannouncement from the US State Department regarding withdrawal from UNESCO was the subject of an article that originally appeared on the BBC News website’s US & Canada and Middle East pages under the interestingly punctuated title “US quits Unesco over ‘anti-Israel bias'” and several hours later had its headline changed to “Israel to join US in quitting Unesco“.

The first five versions of the article carried the original headline with versions 2 and 3 telling BBC audiences that:

“…last year, Israel suspended cooperation with Unesco after the agency adopted a controversial resolution which made no reference to Jewish ties to a key holy site in Jerusalem.”


“…earlier this year, the Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu condemned Unesco for declaring the Old City of Hebron in the West Bank a World Heritage site.”

The UNESCO resolution mentioned in that first paragraph was passed in…

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Guardian’s Donald Macintyre calls for boycott in light of Balfour Declaration centenary.

UK Media Watch

By Richard Millett, London.

Hitler hosts the Mufti in 1941 (Times Of Israel/photo credit: Heinrich Hoffmann Collection/Wikipedia)Hitler hosts the Mufti in 1941 (Times Of Israel/photo credit: Heinrich Hoffmann Collection/Wikipedia)

What a nasty, bigoted, ahistorical piece Donald Macintyre wrote for yesterday’s Guardian. Macintyre is upset that while there is a Jewish state in light of the 1917 Balfour Declaration there is no Palestinian one and, predictably, he blames Israel 100 years later for this and thinks that the best way to resolves this is to destroy Jewish communities living in the West Bank. Macintyre suggests:

“Britain would ideally use the new economic relationship it will have to strike with Israel post-Brexit to exercise leverage on it by deciding on a clear boycott, not of Israel proper, but of trade with and goods coming from the settlements.”

Targeting Jewish communities for destruction resonates for Jewish people. Protagonists have always invented a reason to punish Jewish communities and Macintyre’s reasoning is just the…

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