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Calling it like I see it…

Tuesday, 3 June 2008

We’ve got terrible PR. We really do. There is just no other reasonable explanation for why so many people hate us. And on top of it, the media really seems to have it in for us. (Proof that we DON’T control the media after all…).

This is where Honest Reporting comes in.

Honest Reporting is an outlet that montiors the anti-Israel bias that continues to be commonplace in print and other types of media. By subscribing to Honest Reporting, I am alerted regularly to the numerous DAILY biased and slanderous statments and encouraged to contact the media and voice my displeasure.

Here is a copy of a recent complaint that I sent to the BBC:

Dear Sir/Madam,
On the eve of the 60th anniversary of the establishment of the modern State of Israel, it is particularly disappointing to learn that the BBC selected Mr. Jeremy Bowen to produce the recent documentary “The Birth of Israel.”

As the Middle East Editor for the BBC, he might seem to be the likely choice to produce a documentary focusing on a country in that region. However, Mr. Bowen has frequently
made his bias against Israel abundantly clear and, for this reason, was the wrong choice. Within the first few moments of the documentary, with visual images of Christian
and Muslim symbolism, the omission of any Jewish symbols or sites reinforces the slant of the remainder of the programme — that Jews have no legitimate claim to the land.

How unfortunate that the BBC missed the opportunity to make a documentary that gives a balanced and honest account of the birth of the Jewish State.

Unless, of course, that was the agenda from the first.

Rabbi FrumeSarah
Fountain Valley, CA
United States of America

A calm, well-written letter.

Here is the response:

Thank you for your email raising concerns about “The Birth of Israel”, broadcast on BBC Two on May 4th.

The programme was not intended as a celebration of Israel’s achievements but was an examination of the way that the current conflict was shaped by the events of 1947-48, and
the years that led up to them, starting with the beginning of the Zionist movement in Europe. The reason for making a one hour film around the events of 1948 is that it is regarded as
the beginning of a conflict that is still a major problem in the world. The programme was intended to tell both sides of the story – Palestinian as well as Israeli; there are two very
distinct narratives about 1948 and the programme reflected both of them.

As the BBC’s Middle East Editor, and someone who has lived and worked in the region for a number of years, Jeremy Bowen is highly experienced at providing impartial accounts
of a conflict which raises strong passions; he does not act as a cheerleader for any side.

Nevertheless we’d like to assure you that we’ve registered your complaint on our audience log. This is a daily report of audience feedback that’s circulated to many BBC staff, including members of the BBC Executive Board, channel controllers and other senior managers.

Thank you once again for taking the time to contact us with your views.

Yours sincerely
BBC Information

Wow — are they really so blind that they don’t see right through Jeremy Bowen’s bias? He is, and has always been, a “cheerleader” for the Palestinians. Never once in my letter did I complain that the documentary was not a “celebration of Israel’s achievements.” How could a “programme show both sides of the story” when its producer has a particular angle?
Even the idea that “the current conflict was shaped by the events of 1947-48, and the years
that led up to them, starting with the beginning of the Zionist movement in Europe” conveys a slanted outlook. Not to mention the clear hand that the British had in creating the mess that is “the current conflict.”

Is it a waste of time to write to the editor? No, I really don’t think it is. The moment that we stop protesting is the moment that we condone what they are doing and, by default, agreeing with what is being said.

I don’t. Do you?

2 Comments leave one →
  1. Tuesday, 3 June 2008 7:11 pm

    good for you!!!!! i always say i’m going to write a letter or whatever but then i don’t always follow through with it. your letter was great.

    i am coughing and snuffly so i think that there won’t be a tuesday torah from me this week. there might not even be a wednesday post! oh well, a break won’t hurt, right?

  2. Wednesday, 4 June 2008 7:44 am

    The BBC is unlikely to ever concede that they have a bias against Israel. Makes me crazy but..

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