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BBC coverage of Gaza - unanswered letters

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Joined: 03 Oct 2004
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Location: Glasgow

Post Post subject: BBC coverage of Gaza - unanswered letters Reply with quote

Noted here for reference and illustration rather than any expectation of a response.

To Jon Donnison, BBC correspondent in Gaza

February 10, 2011

Dear Jon

Could you kindly explain why the Israeli bombing yesterday of the Al-Qerem medical supplies centre in Gaza has not been mentioned at BBC online?


John Hilley

To BBC Newsnight presenter Jeremy Paxman

February 15, 2011

Dear Jeremy

During last night's Newsnight interview with film-maker Michael Morpurgo and Louise Ellman MP, of the Britain-Israel group, you said, following Morpurgo's film:

"Israelis aren't going in there to kill children."

I wonder if you're familiar with the Goldstone report which concluded that Israeli operations "were carefully planned in all their phases as a deliberately disproportionate attack designed to punish, humiliate and terrorise a civilian population".

This, quite evidently, includes the deliberate killing of child civilians.

Reinforcing another distortion in Morpurgo's film, you failed to challenge the standard claim that the Israeli assault on Gaza in 2008/9 was "in response" to Hamas rocket attacks.

Again, this is not Goldstone's interpretation, which identified a long-standing plan to bomb Gaza. Nor was there any mention of the well-observed ceasefire initiated by Hamas and deliberately broken by Israel.

Why are these fundamental untruths continuously aired by the BBC?

While noting concern for the plight of children affected by this conflict, both film and interview failed to offer any truthful context for the attack on Gaza.

This includes your own seeming unwillingness to correct and challenge Louise Ellman's claims that 'Cast Lead' was 'a necessary Israeli response to Hamas', official-speak which, despite Goldstone's evidence to the contrary, appears to be dutifully accepted by the BBC.

Films which depict Palestinian suffering are welcome, permitting viewers to see the appalling tragedy. But there's a betrayal of the victims here in failing to examine and report truthfully on why that killing and carnage was initiated.

I hope, in constructive vein, that you and Mr Morpurgo (who tells us in the interview that "we're all friends of Israel") might find cause to reflect on such important responsibilities.


John Hilley
Wed Feb 16, 2011 12:31 pm
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