BBC’s capitulation to political pressure on Gaza casualty figures: tip of a bigger iceberg?

The saga of the BBC’s squeezy stance on the reporting of casualty figures in the Gaza Strip continues.

To recap the story so far; on August 8th the BBC News website published an article titled “Caution needed with Gaza casualty figures” written by the Head of Statistics for BBC News. Three days later, unannounced changes were made to that article – apparently as a result of pressure from campaigning actors including UNRWA spokesman Chris Gunness who reportedly told ‘Private Eye’ (print version only) that the article was “an appalling piece of journalism”. Only on August 15th – four days after amendments had been made to the article – was a footnote added informing audiences that changes had been made to its content. The BBC’s damage control continued in the form of a nine-minute item in the August 22nd edition of ‘More or Less’ on Radio 4. Since then, the BBC has continued to produce highly problematic content on the topic of casualty figures in the Gaza Strip during Operation Protective Edge.  

Not content with the censoring of BBC audiences’ access to statistical insight into the issue of casualty figures in the Gaza Strip, the Palestine Solidarity Campaign now seeks to restrict audiences’ opportunities to benefit from such analysis in the future.PSC

Following a PR campaign, on September 29th the PSC presented a letter (signed by a minuscule proportion of the UK population) to the BBC Director General demanding that:

“…Reuben will no longer be assigned to reporting on Palestine and Israel, as his impartiality and journalistic integrity on this subject cannot be guaranteed.”

As is well known, the Palestine Solidarity Campaign’s faux ‘concerns’ about BBC impartiality and integrity are highly selective; only making an appearance when they are deemed a useful tool in that organisation’s anti-Israel public relations campaigns. Nevertheless, especially in light of the manner in which the BBC speedily capitulated to political pressure over the content of Anthony Reuben’s original article, it might not be in the least surprising to see it allow an opaquely funded fringe group, which provides support for a terrorist organization proscribed by the British government, dictate what BBC audiences can read see or hear.

This latest in a long line of PSC actions is of course particularly interesting in light of the fact that only a couple of weeks ago Jeremy Bowen and John Lloyd were telling listeners to BBC Radio 4 that, with regard to complaints to the BBC, “Palestinians weren’t organized in the same sort of way” [as supporters of Israel] and “Palestinians weren’t geared to complain as Israelis and the Jewish diaspora were”. 

7 comments on “BBC’s capitulation to political pressure on Gaza casualty figures: tip of a bigger iceberg?

  1. Of course these lies are only the tip of the iceberg but WHY do they lie so? is the bbc in the qatari or saudis’ payroll? there MUST be a (bad) reason for all those lies. The good part of it is that it will not serve arabs'(fake “palestinians”) interests in the long run!The more they dig the deeper they will be buried!

  2. Meanwhile, senior beeboid and Jewish cokehead Stephen Fry yesterday attempted to exculpate himself from criminal responsibility for taking drugs at BBC TV Centre (home of the Sir Jimmy Savile paedo-caravan) and Buckingham Palace, but makes no mention of his on-air anti-semitism (linked below):

    “…Fry: I’m the only person I hurt
    Showbiz news

    Stephen Fry has spoken out about his past claims of drug-taking

    Published: 3:22am, 2nd October 2014
    Updated: 4:28pm, 2nd October 2014 (Google News)

    There is a “huge moral difference” between historic sex and drug crimes, actor Stephen Fry has said.

    He accepted some people believed he should be arrested for the drug abuse he wrote about in his latest memoirs.

    But he insisted: “I’m the only person I hurt.

    “I do personally see a huge moral difference between invading somebody’s physical space, raping them, groping them against their will, having sex with when they’re under-age, and me feeding my face with stuff that did me harm.”

    Asked about the going back over of historic sex cases in an interview with BBC’s Newsnight, the comedian denounced Jimmy Savile as an “absolutely monstrous, depraved and repulsive piece of work”.

    But he stressed: “Suddenly, everyone isn’t Jimmy Savile just because they may have patted somebody’s bottom, you know?”

    And he accused the BBC, politicians, the police and society more generally of turning on the same class of person because they were so “horrified” by their own lack of judgement in supporting Savile and allowing him access.

    Fry went on: “Almost uniquely, it’s disc jockeys and light comedians who are the ones who have been accused.

    “If you want to talk about rock stars, do we have to name the rock stars that we think almost certainly had sex with 14-year-old children?

    “But those 14-year-old girls were so proud of it that they now, in their fifties, wouldn’t for a minute call themselves ‘victims’.”

    He also criticised as “utterly wrong” the use of the word for people who are alleged victims.

    “If they’re guilty then quite clearly there should (be) evidence … but they shouldn’t be hung out like fly paper to try to attract other… ‘Oh yeah, I think he touched me too when I was that age…'”

    Fry was also asked if he worried about accusations given the celebrity circle he mixed in during the 80s and 90s.

    Fry replied: “I’ve always thought them pretty repulsive things to do.

    “I’ve never groped anyone as far as I’m aware. But groping is not the same as penetrative rape.

    “Again, things are nuanced, and it’s pretty grotesque to grope, especially an under-age child who doesn’t quite know what’s happening to them.

    “But it’s not as grotesque as raping them. And the law has to be clear on that.”

    In his latest autobiography More Fool Me, the actor admits taking cocaine in Buckingham Palace at the height of his drug addiction.

    He includes a long list of venues where he took the drug – the House of Commons, BBC Television Centre and various private members’ clubs.

    Fry, who has also written novels, has spoken openly in the past about his struggles with depression and a suicide attempt last year while filming a documentary about homophobia….”

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