BBC News continues to link terror to US embassy move

On the afternoon of March 16th a vehicular attack took place near Mevo Dotan.

“A Palestinian driver hit four Israeli soldiers with his car Friday afternoon, killing an officer and a soldier and seriously injuring the others, outside the Mevo Dotan settlement in the northern West Bank. One of the injured soldiers suffered severe head trauma and was fighting for his life.

The military confirmed that the incident was a terror attack. It said the troops were hit while standing near a military guard post.”

A few hours later the BBC News website published a report headlined “Israeli soldiers killed in West Bank car attack” on its Middle East page.  

In line with standard BBC practice, the word terror does not appear anywhere in this report.

“A Palestinian man has driven his car into a group of Israeli troops in the north of the occupied West Bank, killing an officer and a soldier, the Israeli military says. […]

Two other soldiers were injured in the incident.” [emphasis added]

Readers were not told that at the time the article was published, one of the injured soldiers was in serious condition after suffering severe head trauma. Neither were they informed that the terrorist received treatment in an Israeli hospital after the incident.

“The suspect fled from the scene but was later detained. Reports said he was lightly injured.”

The report states:

“The Israeli military said the soldiers had been securing routes near the settlement of Mevo Dotan.”

Readers were not informed that the soldiers were securing that route because – as the Jerusalem Post and others reported:

“Palestinian protesters had been throwing rocks and molotov cocktails toward the road”.  

The BBC did, however, include its standard partial mantra on ‘international law’ in the report.

“The incident happened near the Jewish settlement of Mevo Dotan, west of the Palestinian town of Jenin. […]

The settlements are considered illegal under international law, though Israel disputes this.”

As has so often been the case in BBC reports relating to Palestinian terrorism and violence published since early December 2017, this article suggests linkage between the attack and US recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel over three months ago.

“The Palestinian Islamist group Hamas hailed the car-ramming incident but did not say it was behind it.

The incident happened amid high tension on Friday after Hamas called for protests to mark 100 days since US President Donald Trump recognised Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.”

Hamas had in fact called for a ‘Day of Rage’ rather than “protests” and the attack was also praised by additional Palestinian factions: the PIJ, the DFLP and the PFLP.

The report goes on:

“The US decision to recognise Jerusalem as Israel’s capital has been welcomed by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu but has infuriated Palestinians.

The declaration broke with decades of US neutrality on the issue and put it out of step with the rest of the international community.”

In fact, the US Congress of course voted to recognise Jerusalem as Israel’s capital over two decades ago.

The BBC’s article closes with a quote from an AFP report:

“More than 30 Palestinians and four Israelis have been killed in violence since Mr Trump’s declaration, AFP reported.”

Once again, readers were not told how many of the Palestinians killed were engaged in terror attacks or violent rioting at the time and the BBC refrained from clarifying that a higher number of  Israelis were murdered in terror attacks by Palestinians in the three months before the US president made his declaration than in the three months since. 

Related Articles:

BBC News goes from not reporting car rammings as terror to not reporting at all

BBC News continues to blame Palestinian violence on US

BBC Radio 4’s ‘Today’ promotes equivalence between violent rioters and victims of terror





Hamas agitprop requires BBC journalists to brush up on UN resolution

Reports have emerged concerning an upcoming six-week long stunt organised by factions in the Gaza Strip that is primarily aimed at the international media.

Gaza border area

“In the coming weeks, Hamas plans to set up tent encampments along the Gazan border with Israel, where thousands of the strip’s denizens will be housed, with the intention to march hundreds of Palestinians every day—including the elderly, women and children—to the border fence in “return marches.” 

At the same time, Hamas also intends to hold mass fishing boat protests near the maritime border with Israel. These actions will gradually grow in intensity and culminate just before Israel’s 70th Independence Day.”

The ITIC has more details on the agitprop scheduled to commence on March 30th – ‘Land Day’ – which this year is also Passover Eve.

“According to the march organizers, the objective is to send a message to the world about the Palestinians’ “right of return.” […]

Originally the proposed date for the march was May 15 (Nakba Day). However, calls have recently been heard to hold the main event on Land Day, March 30, the day Israelis Arabs have demonstrated their adherence to their lands since 1976. The organizers of the march said it would not be a single event but rather a series of activities which would continue over time. Issam Adwan, head of Hamas’ department of refugee affairs, said the organizing committee had agreed to hold the march on Land Day (March 30, 2018). He said all the national and Islamic organizations, including Fatah, had agreed. He said the march would be only a part of the comprehensive initiative of “the great return march”. […]

The organizers said they intended to recruit about a hundred thousand participants, most of them from the refugee camps in the Gaza Strip. The “great return march” coordinating committee appealed to Gazans to take an active role. The committee also reported it was continuing its efforts to establish national committees in other countries that would organize their own marches, simultaneous to the one in the Gaza Strip.

The organizers, led by Abu Artima, continue to emphasize the march will be non-violent and there is no intention to confront IDF forces. Interviewed by Hamas’ Palinfo website, he called “the great return march” a “popular strategic tool” to use peaceful measures to realize the “right of return.” He said the march would be different from the [routine] clashes at the border security fence. That was because the participants would not throw stones, but rather hold a rally that the whole world and media outlets would watch.”[emphasis added]

Obviously such an event could not take place without Hamas’ approval.

“The organizers got a green light from Hamas and the PIJ for the march. “The great return march” Facebook page posted a statement from Issam Adwan, head of Hamas’ department of refugee affairs, who emphasized the necessity and importance of the event. He said it was part of the “resistance” and that it was no less important than the “armed struggle.” He also said that the Land Day march would be only the opening move of a comprehensive global operation. […]

Talal Abu Zarifa, senior figure in the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine (DFLP), said the Palestinian organizations had agreed on activities that would be consistent with the objectives of “the great return march.” […] He added that the organizations had agreed to continue mass recruitment, to make Israel responsible [for what happens] and realize the “right of return”.”

Apparently the organisers of that agitprop intended to employ antisemitic Nazi analogy.

“According to information on the Facebook page of “the great march of the return,” in preparation for the event the organizers need clothing like the striped suits worn by the inmates of the Nazi concentration camps. Anyone who could provide such suits, or sew them, was asked to contact the march’s coordinating committee. The organizers are apparently going to present a display comparing the Palestinians to the victims of the Nazis.”

Photo credit: ITIC

The project’s logo includes a reference to UN GA resolution 194 of December 1948.

“The new logo shows the UN logo and the number 194, which relates to UN General Assembly Resolution 194 […], a map of “Palestine” in the colors of the Palestinian flag, with no reference to the existence of the State of Israel; a hand holding a key, the symbol of the so-called right of the Palestinian refugees to return to the places they lived in 70 years ago.”

Any BBC journalist intending to cover this propaganda campaign should of course be aware of the fact that Resolution 194 is non-binding, that it does not specifically relate to Palestinian refugees (despite long-standing BBC claims to that effect) and – contrary to often heard assertions – neither does it grant any unconditional ‘right of return’. Rather, it recommends that refugees be allowed to return to their homeland if they wish to “live at peace with their neighbours”. Also worth remembering is the fact that the Arab states voted against that UN GA resolution.

Related Articles:

BACKGROUNDER: The Palestinian Claim to a “Right of Return”  (CAMERA)



PA glorification of terrorism once again ignored by the BBC

In late May the BBC’s Middle East editor wrote an article summing up the US president’s visit to Israel in which he told BBC audiences that:

“One pointer to a potential difference with Israel’s Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu came at the museum. In his opening remarks, Mr Netanyahu said that if the bomber in Manchester was Palestinian, and his victims were Israelis, the Palestinian Authority would be paying a stipend to his family.

He was referring to a Palestinian Martyrs’ fund. It pays pensions to people it regards as victims of the occupation, including the families of individuals who have been killed attacking Israelis. There is also a fund to support Palestinians who have been imprisoned by Israel. The Palestinians have compared the payments to the salaries Israel pays to soldiers.

President Trump, in his speech, did not pick up the cue.

After making many warm remarks about Israel, which earned him standing ovations, he said he believed that the Palestinian President, Mahmoud Abbas, was serious about making peace.

Senior Israeli politicians and officials in the room disagree. Prime Minister Netanyahu said earlier this year that President Abbas lied to Donald Trump when they met in the White House.” [emphasis added]

As was noted here at the time:

“The BBC’s Middle East editor does not of course bother to inform the corporation’s audiences that Mahmoud Abbas did indeed lie when he stated during that Washington visit that:

“Mr. President, I affirm to you that we are raising our youth, our children, our grandchildren on a culture of peace.”

Of course the BBC’s long-standing editorial policy of avoidance of meaningful reporting on the issue of the PA’s incitement and glorification of terrorism – including among children – means that audiences would be unable to fill in Bowen’s deliberate blanks.”

Another recent example of Palestinian Authority glorification of terrorism that has been completely ignored by the BBC came to light last month when the PA dedicated a square in the town of Jenin to the planner of the infamous Ma’alot massacre in 1974 in which 22 children and 4 adults were killed.

After protests, the mayor of Jenin decided to remove the monument but stated that the square would continue to be named after the terrorist. However, after pressure from Fatah and others, the monument was restored, only to be dismantled again by the IDF two days later. A street in another town was subsequently named after the same terrorist.

As PMW reported, not only did the DFLP (the faction to which the terrorist belonged) and Mahmoud Abbas’ own party Fatah continue to protest the removal of the monument but official PA TV also joined the glorification of that terror attack.

The BBC, however, continues to fail its audiences by refraining from providing the readily available information which would enhance their understanding of the involvement of the Palestinian Authority and its ruling party Fatah in promoting violence, incitement and glorification of terrorism.



One of those ‘obstacles to peace’ the BBC won’t tell audiences about

Palestinian Media Watch informs us of a ceremony held last week in which the PA president Mahmoud Abbas awarded the “highest order of the Star of Honor” to the founder and leader of the DFLP (Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine), Nayef Hawatmeh. 

Hawatmeh and his organization are of course responsible for the murders of dozens of Israelis in terror attacks, the best known of which is the Ma’alot massacre in 1974.

Apparently, the Palestinian Authority’s latest display of glorification of terror – and the absence of preparation of its people for a peaceful solution to the conflict exemplified by such actions – is not deemed a ‘need to know’ item for BBC audiences and (unlike Israelis building apartments in Jerusalem neighbourhoods) does not constitute one of the BBC’s “stumbling blocks to peace negotiations.

Another ‘soft’ BBC portrayal of terrorism

A report from April 23rd entitled “Palestinian prisoner Samer Issawi to end hunger strike” which appeared in the Middle East section of the BBC News website is marred by inaccuracies and omissions. 


The report states:

“Issawi had faced the prospect of serving an entire 26-year sentence originally imposed in 2002.”

In fact, Issawi faced the prospect of serving the remainder of his original 26 year sentence as a result of his having violated the terms of his 2011 release. Issawi was sentenced to 26 years’ imprisonment after being convicted of  – amongst other things – membership of a terror organization (DFLP), attempting to cause grievous bodily harm and the possession of weapons. 

The article continues:

“He was jailed for shooting attacks on Israeli vehicles, released in a prisoner exchange and later rearrested for violating the terms of his release.”

The laconic description “shooting attacks on Israeli vehicles” whitewashes the fact that Issawi’s activities were not directed at inanimate objects, but at the people travelling in those vehicles, as well as others. As CAMERA noted earlier this year:

“[Issawi] was convicted of severe crimes, which including five attempts of intentional death. This included four shootings, between July 2001 and February 2002, in which Isawi and his partners fired on police cars and buses travelling between Ma’ale Adumim and Jerusalem. In one attack, a policeman was injured and required surgery. On October 30, 2001, Isawi, together with an accomplice, fired at two students walking from the Hebrew University campus to their car in a nearby parking lot. In another case, Isawi provided guns and explosive devices to a squad, who fired on a bus. Finally, in December 2001, Isawi ordered an attack on security personnel at Hebrew University, providing a squad with a pistol and a pipebomb. Two of the squad members tracked security personnel but opted not to execute the attack.”

The BBC report goes on: [emphasis added]

“Members of his family travelled to the jail where he has been refusing food to tell him that he could now end his protest.”

In fact, Issawi was not in prison at the time, but at the Kaplan Medical Centre in Rehovot – a non-governmental civilian hospital – where he has been hospitalized since February 27th 2013.

This is, of course not the first time that the BBC has presented a ‘soft’ portrayal of Issawi and whitewashed his (and others’) violent terrorist activities. As long as it continues to conceal from its audiences the full facts about these cases, the BBC will also continue to compromise its own reputation for accuracy and impartiality. 

BBC continues to conceal terror connections of Palestinian hunger strikers

On February 28th 2013 an article entitled “Two Palestinians held in Israeli jail end hunger strike” by the BBC Jerusalem Bureau’s Yolande Knell appeared on the Middle East page of the BBC News website. 

Knell end hunger strike

As has been the case with all the BBC’s reporting on the subject of these hunger strikes and the associated riots, this article too avoids informing BBC audiences of the terror connections of the Palestinian prisoners involved in the campaign.

Writing about the two men who have ended their hunger strike, Knell informs her readers:

“Two Palestinian held in an Israeli jail without trial have ended their hunger strike, Israeli officials said.

Tariq Qaadan and Jafar Ezzedine started taking food on Wednesday after a military court hearing.”


“Mr Qaadan and Mr Ezzedin are under administrative detention orders that run until 21 May. Both began a hunger strike in November taking in only water and refusing food supplements. They were transferred to a hospital earlier this month.

Another hearing for their case is expected at Ofer military court on 6 March but their lawyer says they have been told their detention will not be extended further.”

Knell conceals from her readers the fact that the two men – both from Arabe near Jenin – are senior members of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad terror organization and in doing so, compromises the BBC’s commitment to accuracy. On the subject of the other two hunger strikers, Knell writes:

DFLP march in support of Issawi

“Two others, Samer Issawi and Ayman Sharawna, are still on hunger strike and are being observed in hospital.”


“The men were released in October 2011 as part of a prisoner exchange deal that led to the freeing by Hamas of captured Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit. Both were later re-arrested by the Israeli authorities for allegedly violating the terms of their release. Israel has ordered they should serve out the remainder of their original sentences.

This prompted Mr Issawi to begin his hunger strike in August, but the BBC understands that at points he has broken off his protest for short periods. Mr Sharawna has been on hunger strike since July, except for a brief break in January.”

Yet again, Knell fails to inform readers of the terrorist activity which caused the DFLP associated Issawi and the Hamas member Sharawna to be imprisoned in the first place, as has been previously detailed on these pages. 

“According to the Israel Prison Service, Samer Issawi of Issawiyeh, Jerusalem was arrested in April 2002 and sentenced to 26 years for attempted murder, belonging to an unrecognized (terror) organization, military training, and possession of weapons, arms and explosive materials.”

“It is important to point out the grave terrorism offences of which Al-Issawi was convicted, including firing a gun at a civilian vehicle in October 2001, indiscriminately firing an AK47 assault rifle at civilian buses, and manufacturing and distributing pipe bombs used in attacks on Israeli civilians.”

“Ayman Sharawna, from Dura near Hebron, was also released under the Shalit deal in October 2011, by which time he had served ten years of a 38 year sentence for attempted murder and bomb-making. Sharawna is a member of the Hebron branch of Hamas and was rearrested on January 31st 2012 due to violating of the terms of his release by returning to Hamas activities. Shawarna was originally apprehended on May 10th 2002 when he and another terrorist planted an explosive device near a branch of Bank HaPoalim on HaAtzmaout Street in Be’er Sheva. The device malfunctioned, but despite that eighteen people were injured in the attack. Sharawna and his accomplice were caught fleeing the scene by members of the public and he was also found to have taken part in prior shooting attacks during the second Intifada.” 

The recurrent failure of the BBC to fully disclose the associations and actions of these prisoners cannot be excused as a mere oversight. Rather, this is a clear attempt to shape audience perception of events by placing the accent of the story upon the subject of their imprisonment, whilst downplaying their terror connections to the point of non-existence. That practice is rendered even more egregious by Knell’s observation later in the article that:

“There have been widespread demonstrations in the West Bank and Gaza Strip in recent weeks to show support for Palestinian prisoners who are widely seen as heroes of the national cause.” [emphasis added]

Neither Knell nor any of her colleagues who have written about this subject have bothered – even in the name of token impartiality – to report how Israelis see convicted attempted murderers and members of terrorist organisations. Neither has a full and factual profile of the practice of Administrative Detention been provided for BBC audiences’ information and understanding, nor any column space whatsoever been devoted to the Israeli view of why it is necessary.

In fact, the BBC’s reporting across the board on this subject seems to suggest that it has decided to join in with the PA’s portrayal of Palestinian prisoners as wronged tragic heroes and with its public campaign against the detention of terror operatives which includes the attempt to redefine them as ‘political prisoners’. That impression is only reinforced by Knell’s choice of quote towards the end of the article.

“On Wednesday, a UN human rights investigator called for an international inquiry into Mr Jaradat’s death.

“The death of a prisoner during interrogation is always a cause for concern, but in this case, when Israel has shown a pattern and practice of prisoner abuse, the need for outside credible investigation is more urgent than ever,” stated Richard Falk, UN special rapporteur for human rights in the Palestinian territories.”

The highly discredited Richard Falk was recently removed from a concurrent post at Human Rights Watch on account of a long history of anti-Israeli bias, 9/11 conspiracies and often overt antisemitism. Falk – who predictably repeats and promotes the Palestinian Authority’s entirely unproven accusation that Arafat Jaradat died “during interrogation” in an Israeli prison in this quote – would of course have been highly unlikely to say anything else, but the use of that quote allows Knell to garnish her article with what she apparently assumes to be an air of UN-related supposed authority. 

Knell’s failure to adhere to BBC editorial guidelines on accuracy and impartiality means that her article joins its predecessors on the subject as yet another example of political campaigning badly disguised as journalism. 


Politicised BBC report on hunger strikers omits crucial information

On February 18th 2013 the BBC published an article in the Middle East section of its website entitled “Protest in West Bank for Palestinian hunger strikers“. 

Hunger strikers

Like many other media organisations, the BBC made much of the numerous uninformed statements on the subject coming from abroad.

“The Middle East Quartet (UN, US, EU and Russia) has recently issued warnings about the condition of the strikers.

The EU’s foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton said she was “following with concern” the deteriorating health of four Palestinian hunger strikers.”


“On Saturday the EU called on Israel to “[fully respect] international human rights obligations towards all Palestinian detainees and prisoners”.

Middle East Quartet envoy Tony Blair expressed concern about “the deteriorating health condition of the four prisoners”.

Earlier in the week, the UN expressed concern for the hunger strikers and called on Israel to end its practice of administrative detention.”

The BBC article also includes comments from Palestinian sources.

“Mukid Abu Atwan, the Director General of Palestinian Prisoners’ Ministry, told the BBC that the hunger strikers should be released immediately.

“We want to tell Israelis and the rest of the world that we won’t accept for Palestinian prisoners to come out of jail in coffins. They deserve to be free and live a dignified life,” he said.

The hunger strikers and their supporters say they are being unfairly held.”

What this BBC article fails to do, however, is to inform its readers of who the striking prisoners actually are and why they are in prison in the first place. The article states:

“One, Samer Issawi, has been on an intermittent protest for 200 days and is said to be in a critical condition.

The three other hunger strikers are Tariq Qaadan, Jafar Ezzedine and Ayman Sharawna.”

It is pointed out later in the article that Issawi and Sharawna were among the 1,027 Palestinian prisoners released as part of the Shalit deal in October 2011, but no information is given regarding the reasons for their imprisonment. 

Our colleagues at CAMERA have more details on Samer Issawi: 

“According to the Israel Prison Service, Samer Issawi of Issawiyeh, Jerusalem was arrested in April 2002 and sentenced to 26 years for attempted murder, belonging to an unrecognized (terror) organization, military training, and possession of weapons, arms and explosive materials.”

“It is important to point out the grave terrorism offences of which Al-Issawi was convicted, including firing a gun at a civilian vehicle in October 2001, indiscriminately firing an AK47 assault rifle at civilian buses, and manufacturing and distributing pipe bombs used in attacks on Israeli civilians.”

Issawi was rearrested in July 2012 due to violations of the terms of his release. Whilst the BBC includes in its article brief mentions of some of the various protests in support of Issawi, it notably refrains from mentioning the violent events initiated by Issawi’s family during a court hearing last December, the violent demonstration which took place three days before the article was published outside the Ofer prison or the involvement of the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine (DFLP) in some of those demonstrations, as can be noted from observation of the flags bearing Issawi’s image below.

Demonstration in Abu Dis

Ayman Sharawna, from Dura near Hebron, was also released under the Shalit deal in October 2011, by which time he had served ten years of a 38 year sentence for attempted murder and bomb-making. Sharawna is a member of the Hebron branch of Hamas and was rearrested on January 31st 2012 due to violating of the terms of his release by returning to Hamas activities. Shawarna was originally apprehended on May 10th 2002 when he and another terrorist planted an explosive device near a branch of Bank HaPoalim on HaAtzmaout Street in Be’er Sheva. The device malfunctioned, but despite that eighteen people were injured in the attack. Sharawna and his accomplice were caught fleeing the scene by members of the public and he was also found to have taken part in prior shooting attacks during the second Intifada. 

Tariq Qaadan and Jafar Ezzedine are both from Arabe near Jenin and both are senior Palestinian Islamic Jihad operatives.

Qaadan has been arrested several times in the past, including in 2002 and 2004. In March 2011 Qaadan was arrested by the Palestinian Authority in connection with investigations into the terror attack in Jerusalem in which British national Mary Jean Gardner was killed and over 50 people injured.

 Jafar Ezzedine has also been arrested in the past and took part in a previous hunger strike organized by Palestinian prisoners in May 2012. Earlier this month, Ezzedine took his case to the High Court of Justice, which rejected his appeal , clarifying that a hunger strike cannot be considered a factor in decisions relating to the length of administrative detention. 

The BBC’s portrayal of Palestinian prisoners who have chosen to go on hunger strike as victims, and its failure to inform audiences of the true nature of their past crimes and their activities with terror organisations, does not only breach BBC guidelines on accuracy and impartiality.

The hunger strikes themselves – and the massive public relations campaign which surrounds them – are organised political acts designed to rally outside pressure on Israel with the aim of securing the release of people involved in terrorist activities. Neither the BBC nor the numerous foreign dignitaries expressing an opinion on the subject will, of course, have to live with the consequences of the success of that campaign. That task will be left to the Israeli public, some members of which have already fallen victim to acts perpetrated by these men.

It is highly inappropriate for the BBC to be lending its voice and its reputation to such a political public relations campaign by producing one-sided reports such as this one which hide the true issues from BBC audiences.