Earlier this week we noted (not for the first time) that the BBC has so far failed to provide its audiences with the information necessary for them to comprehend the Israeli demand for Palestinian recognition of Israel as the Jewish state within the framework of the ongoing negotiations.
No attempt whatsoever has been made by the BBC to clarify the significance of that demand as a way of ensuring that the agreement currently under negotiation would bring a real and lasting conclusion to the conflict by ending any potential future demands based on claim of Israel as ‘Palestinian’ or ‘Arab’ land.
This week, in an article about Mahmoud Abbas’ recent visit to Washington, the BBC informed audiences that “[t]he Palestinians recognise the State of Israel” and amplified the PA’s ‘reasons’ for its refusal to recognise Israel as the Jewish state. It has however consistently failed to inform audiences that even as negotiations are ongoing, the Palestinian Authority still continues to promote to its citizens the exact opposite message: the notion of Israel as ‘Palestinian’ land.
The image below (courtesy of PMW) was broadcast on official PA television last month. The caption underneath the map which eradicates Israel completely reads “Palestine: A number that is indivisible.”
The Facebook page of Fatah (headed by Mahmoud Abbas and the largest faction in the PLO which is conducting the current negotiations) stated on March 5th:
“We educate our children on the national anthem every morning. They will memorize the anthem of ‘return’; they will engrave the four-colored [Palestinian] flag on their hearts; they will learn the foundations of the revolution before they learn to read and write; they will only agree to one rule, which cannot be added to, subtracted from, or calculated: that Palestine cannot be divided.”
“The text was accompanied by a photo of a teacher pointing to a map of “Palestine” replacing all of Israel drawn on the blackboard, with the explanatory text rejecting Israeli jurisdiction over Israeli cities: “Acre, Haifa, Jaffa, Ramle, Safed, Beit Shean, were and will remain Palestinian cities.” “
If BBC audiences are to be able to reach informed opinions on the subject of the current talks between Israel and the PLO and on the broader issue of the peace process in general – as pledged under the terms of the BBC’s public purpose remit – it is obvious that they must be provided with more than just the trite slogan of “[t]he Palestinians recognise the State of Israel” without any additional insight into the dissonance between that assertion and the messages promoted by the Palestinian Authority to its own people. Only if they are aware of that dissonance will BBC audiences be able to fully understand why Israel insists upon Palestinian recognition of Israel as the Jewish state.
So far, however, the BBC continues to self-censor on the issue of the PA’s external and internal messaging.