The BBC’s admirable reporter Alan Johnston was rescued from his cruel incarceration in Gaza by the Palestinian government led by Hamas.
At the time, the BBC thanked the people of Gaza, and Hamas Prime Minister Ismael Haniya in particular, for breaking the criminal gang of extortionists who had seized their man – at the risk of their own lives to save his.
Now in the winter of their hardships, as 61,000 families shiver in the ruins of their bombed-out houses, in rags and hungry, the same BBC has stabbed them in the back. The achievement of the corporation’s management, in uniting the Government, the opposition, the churches, the press, right and left, the anti-war movement, ITV, Channel 4, Channel 5, on one side and they and the Israel lobby on the other is almost unparalelled in modern public relations.
After a 22-day attack which has left thousands of children dead or orphaned and left the Strip looking like a moonscape, the publicly funded, bloated, arrogant, insensitive bosses who’ve presided over the Beeb through scandals from Blue Peter to Jonathan Ross have now launched their own airwave strike on the refugees.
And their smokescreen of “impartiality” will prove as deadly to these refugees as any cloud of white phosphorous gas.
The BBC, once the proud emblem of Britishness, is now branded around the world, and dangerously the Muslim world, as an arm of Israeli propaganda.
Its journalists – new Alan Johnstons – have been imperilled. Its reputation for “impartiality” shot full of as many holes as a UN compound under Israeli bombers. Its arguments against broadcasting the Disasters Emergency Committee Appeal for Gaza are an insult.
First to the intelligence of the people who pay their licence fees and second to the British charities within the DEC, the likes of Christian Aid, Save the Children (Patron HRH the Princess Anne), Oxfam and the rest.
The BBC’s claim that they can’t be sure the aid will get through is aclear accusation against the very humanitarian organisations we trust to deliver aid from Britain in every other world disaster around the world.
In any case, Gaza is a tiny place, now, though not when it most mattered, moving with western journalists. Gaza is sealed shut.
Where could Christian Aid’s deliveries of medicines and nappies go if not to the suffering?
The mouthpiece of the corporation in this miserable scandal is a Scot, like Alan Johnston.
She is Caroline Thompson, the daughter of Dundee’s highest political achiever, the late Lord George Thompson, a member of Harold Wilson’s cabinet in the 1960s and a former European Union Commissioner.
‘Once an emblem of Britishness, the BBC is now branded around the world – and the Muslim world – as an arm of Israeli propaganda’
Email her at firstname.lastname@example.org and let her have apiece of your mind.