Eine Kleine Nichtmusik

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Monday, August 16, 2010

The Zionist Broadcasting Corporation does what it's paid for, again

I have just been watching tonight's BBC Panorama programme on the Mavi Marmara massacre. If anyone was ever in doubt that the BBC's coverage of Middle Eastern affairs is bought and paid for by the Israeli government, this should clarify the matter. According to the BBC (whose reporter was embedded with the IDF and went with them on training exercises) the convoy's organisers (the Turkish IHH) had terrorist links (a claim, BTW, made only by the Israelis). At no point was the legality of a challenge to a ship in international waters by Israeli forces questioned at all. Much play was made of the activists' determination to defend themselves if attacked. One activist said that if he died he wanted his family to know he had done so in a good cause: this was spun to make it look as though he was intending to martyr himself like a suicide bomber. The Israelis claimed that the activists had firearms other than those seized from the IDF, but the display of weapons confiscated showed nothing more sinister than kitchen knives, and while there were IDF soldiers claiming to have been stabbed none claimed to have been shot. We were shown the footage (now admitted by the Israelis to be fake) of the "Go back to Auschwitz" message from the Mavi Marmara, with only the comment that its authenticity was disputed. (This is like quoting the Protocols of the Elders of Zion and saying "their authenticity is disputed".) We had a loving close-up of (supposedly) an activist holding a knife, though it was being held between finger and thumb as though perhaps, it had been picked up from an IDF soldier (it looked like a military knife as against the kitchen knives the IDF claimed to have confiscated). We had IDF soldiers explaining how they advanced through the ship shooting activists in the legs (though not how this resulted in the casualties shot in the back of the head). We heard much of the fear of the poor IDF soldiers whose abseil route to the deck had been compromised by the wicked activists (they tied it to an antenna instead of simply rolling over and capitulating, so of course they had to be shot, in self defence, by the frightened darlings of the IDF).

Finally, and the ultimate insult to the memory of those who died in the massacre, the Panorama presenter told us that the convoy was purely a political stunt and not about aid at all, because among the cargo seized by the Israelis (and still sitting in storage somewhere despite the IDF's claims that it would pass it on to its Gaza recipients) she found (or was given by her Israeli minders - no proof was offered that they had any connection with the convoy) some date-expired, and thus "useless", medicines. Hmm, let's see now. My child's arm has just been blown off by an Israeli bomb and I have the choice of (a) no painkillers or antibiotics, or (b) painkillers and antibiotics with labels saying they should be used by 10 August 2010. Should I refuse to use the medicines because their effectiveness might be less than 100%? Is this even a sensible question given that the medicines are still sitting in some IDF officer's yard for hasbara use with gullible journalists like the BBC and are more likely to be eventually sold on the black market than to get within ten miles of Gaza?

And so on, and on. It would seem that the IDF could establish a floating gas chamber in the Mediterranean and shove whomever they wished into it, and if their spokesmen said the victims were terrorists and the IDF were acting in self-defence, the BBC would accept it without question. This programme made me feel ill, and I shall not be looking for any kind of truthful coverage of West Asian affairs from the BBC (not that I did before, after their initial refusal to permit charity appeals on behalf of the victims of Operation Cast Lead).

Let's just return to basics. What justification does Israel believe it has for boarding foreign vessels in international waters? Because until that is established, the degree of resistance it met, whether that be iron bars, knives, Kalashnikovs, or tactical nuclear weapons, is irrelevant. That the BBC showed no interest whatsoever in this basic question tells you all you need to know about its sympathies, even before its propagation of admitted Israeli fake footage.

UPDATE

Inspired by this farrago, I have today made my first ever complaint to the BBC about a programme. I also complained to OFCOM, and would encourage anyone else who feels strongly about the programme (watch it first though!) to do so. Be warned that OFCOM has a 750-character limit for complaints, so minimalism is encouraged.

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