The Good, the Bad, and the BBC

If anyone accuses me of ferreting out the bad in something good, here’s an example for them, on a plate.
The something good is very good and very unusual. It’s a programme on the BBC world service in a series called Heart and Soul. I linked to it in a previous post, but I fear it was buried amongst too many words.

Several others have praised this programme, as did I. Everyone thought it was a programme about antisemitism, the current manifestation rather than the Nazi variety. Some thought it contained one or two questionable remarks, one of which has been discussed at length elsewhere, concerning the statement: “Some Jews mistake criticism of Israel for antisemitism,” but on the whole everyone was full of praise and thought it was a breakthrough.

What’s more, Wendy Robbins consulted two of the most eloquent and authoritative people for contributions. So, part one of the two-part series was everything one could have wished for, if one were in the habit of wishing that the BBC was not campaigning furiously against everything one knows and loves.

Mary Jackson says: “It makes the point that today’s anti-Semites are not jackbooted Nazis but Muslims. Of course it then feels obliged to qualify this with “a minority of…”, which is true but not the whole truth. And it makes no reference to the role of the execrable Jeremy Bowen and Orla Guerin in fuelling Jew-hatred with their lies about Israel.”

Now, here’s where the bad comes in. The BBC is confused. It doesn’t hate all Jews; it is very fond of holocaust victims. So in order to rationalise this disturbing programme and the BBC’s role in the current manifestation of antisemitism, they have magicked the programme into their mould. A piece on the website describing the programme reveals how. In the BBC’s eyes, it is not about antisemitism at all. It’s about holocaust denial, which is something they can honestly say they do not go along with.
Don’t mention the Muslims. Wendy Robbins did that once but I think she got away with it.

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21 Responses to The Good, the Bad, and the BBC

  1. George R says:

    “BBC still fails on East London Mosque: lets it claim hosting a terrorist preacher was ‘administrative oversight'”

    ( Andrew Gilligan)


  2. john in cheshire says:

    I don’t think the bbc is reformable. It is far too broken, too bigoted, too racist, too anti-Christian, too anti-Israel, too pro-muslim, too socialist to ever be able to heal itself. It is rather like a lame horse, and needs to be mercifully put out of our misery.


  3. Backwoodsman says:

    The bbc stance on Israel is a throwback to their fellow traveling, left leaning roots, where the  dynamic and thrusting Israel, supported by the USA, was seen as an anathema.


  4. Daniel Smith says:

    Nick Cohen in the spectator:

    “I am not a BBC basher. I know it has many fine reporters. But this morning it produced one of the its most cowardly pieces of journalism in years. In a report on the mosque for its religious programme Sunday (see here, 30 minutes in) it only allowed one British Muslim to explain that Islamism was a political movement, whose first aim in this country was to regulate the lives and limit the freedoms of British Muslims. That was it. At no point did the tongue-tied reporter dare to stammer out the name of Jamaat, or tell listeners about its connection to the mosque, its ideology or its alleged crimes. I guess he or his producers feared accusations of “Islamophobia” if he did. It was as if a random group of conservative Muslims just happened to be in charge, rather than a sectarian party, striving for ethno-religious power.

    As Shiraz concludes:
    “Ironically, two years ago Jamaat was virtually eliminated as a political force in Bangladesh, winning just two out of 300 seats. By contrast, their allies in Britain still claim to speak for British Muslims while their ‘mother party’ has been decisively rejected at the ballot box. In contrast to the determination of the Bangladeshi people to reject extremist politics, Mr. Susman has emboldened their British counterparts. This visit comes as a bitter blow to those secular and genuinely progressive Muslims in East London who have been pushing back against the mosque’s extremism.”

    And it is not only Mr Susman, who has been doing the emboldening, but also the heir to the throne, the former Mayor of London, the current mayor of London, the Lord Chief Justice and the BBC.”


    • Guest Who says:

      I guess he or his producers feared accusations of “Islamophobia” if he did.’

      Generous, at best. But a crushing insight into the BBC’s value as a ‘reporter’ of ‘news’ which can be trusted. 


  5. George R says:

    INBBC regular, Abdel Bari Atwan, is speaking now to the London School of Economics( LSE) Students’ Union Palestine Society on ‘Zionist lobby’.

    Of course, if any pro-Israel speakers invited to speak at the LSE they would be prevented from doing so, as this article indicates:

    Abdel Bari Atwan, Hatred, Lies and LSE


    “Abdel Bari Atwan is on film claiming that he would dance in Trafalgar square were Israel to be attacked by Iranian missiles.”

    And, of course, the LSE, in line with many ‘British’ universities is becoming increasingly Islamised in both its funding and its courses:

    – see pages 89-96 on LSE, in ‘A Degree of Influence’ (by Robin Simcox) in PDF here:


  6. TrueToo says:

    Interesting Heart and Soul programme. Amazing that it was on the World Service. But of course the BBC giveth with one hand and taketh away with the other: there was an appalling bit of spin a week or two back about Muslim “fear” regarding some crackpot Swede who was attacking Muslims in Malmo, with Muslims apparently being afraid to leave their houses, can you believe it. No mention, of course, of where the danger and hatred is really coming from and who the targets are.


  7. TrueToo says:

    Yep it’s true and disgraceful in one. I’m not sure how to find it again but it was grossly absurd in its portrayal of Malmo’s Muslims (presumably all 50 000 of them) as cowering indoors for fear of an attack by a rampaging Swede intent on picking them off one by one. Whereas the ongoing attacks by Muslims against Malmo’s Jews and mugging and rape by Muslims of ordinary Swedes are well-known – outside of the BBC, that is.

    This Heart and Soul programme was the first mention I have heard from the BBC of the dire situation of the Jews of Malmo and of course of other Swedes who, in their naive generosity and idealism, have welcomed and nurtured an Islamic monster that is eating them up from the inside out. I have a friend there who is an active supporter of Israel and the stories she tells are disturbing indeed. The Muslim threat aside, she has even come under near attack from neo-Nazis who surrounded her home and menaced her.


    • David Preiser (USA) says:

      The BBC certainly paid attention when some nutter was going around Malmö shooting at Mohammedans.  A simple search of the city name on the BBC website brings up a number of reports.  The BBC described it as ‘race’ shootings, once again dishonestly conflating race with religion to fit an editorial agenda.

      Yet they’ve censored all news of what’s been happening to the Jews.  Not shocking, sadly.  Just typical.

      Come see the bias inherent in the system.


  8. TrueToo says:

    Comprehensive article from Haaretz about the problems in Malmo:


  9. TrueToo says:

    Since the latest open thread is languishing near the bottom of the page I’ll take the liberty of posting the following here. It’s sorta on topic:

    Near the end of the penultimate open thread the eminent deegee posted a comment on Jon Donnison’s “reporting” of the tragic fire that has just swept through Northern Israel. Soon after the story broke, he mentioned that prisoners, mostly Palestinian, were in danger from the fire. Then he reported on the tragic death of the prison guards in the bus. And finally, he condescended to fall in line with news that had been available from other sources for some time: that the guards had been on their way to assist the evacuation of the prisoners – but now, miraculously, they were no longer Palestinians, but just prisoners.

    Amazing how quickly the BBC can drop a label when it puts Israel in a positive, rather than a negative light. I have no doubt that Donnison was rubbing his hands at the prospect of spinning a story about heartless Israelis leaving Palestinians to die in a raging fire.

    On the World Service he was introduced as reporting from Jerusalem. I guess it was too much effort to get to the scene of the fire and report first hand on what was going on. Much easier to rely on what the BBC’s dubious sources were telling him.

    The BBC needs to be broken up and flushed down the toilet.


    • sue says:

      Jon Donnison reeks of Beebism. Not only everything he says, but the way he says it. He should be transferred to regional TV along with Jeremy Bowen. They both have a parochial aura that would be much more at home, at home. 
      If you’ve been billeted somewhere for a certain length of time, they call you an expert, as though a long-service automatically confers insight. Jeremy Bowen has been in the M.E. for a while, but has learned little.
      In my humble opinion.
      Jon D. hasn’t been there long, but it looks like he’s found the angle he’s comin’ from, and he’s sticking to it.

      Re. OT.
      You will have noticed that “my” threads always become ‘the Israel’ thread du jour. Not that I mind. People who scroll past will still scroll past, wherever your ‘Israel’ comment is posted.

      Re. Toilet.
      Two flushes and robust plumbing.


      • David Preiser (USA) says:

        Donnison isn’t as bad as the recently departed useful Jews.


        • sue says:

          He is, but in a different way. “Whenever an Englishman opens his mouth he makes some other Englishman despise him“. Perhaps, with me, it’s that. A particular whiney inflection and pronunciation defines ‘presenters’ of that generation. You may think that’s trivial and irrelevant, but to me, his limitations give Tim Franks and Katya Adler a good run for their money in the denigration department.


      • TrueToo says:

        And a good scouring with abrasive powder with chlorine bleach. That should do the trick.


  10. George R says:

    More for INBBC on anti-semitism in Sweden:

    “DiManno: Sweden: A new hotbed of hatred?”

    (March, 2010)–dimanno-sweden-a-new-hotbed-of-hatred?bn=1


  11. TrueToo says:

    I don’t agree that Donnison is less bad than Franks and Adler. I gritted my teeth and stuck with him through an entire afternoon and evening as the World Service tried to fool us that it was reporting on the Mavi Marmara episode. He was telling us that the Islamic thugs were “defending themselves” against the Israelis with “sticks” long after video had been circulating of the Israelis being beaten to the deck with metal bars. He is so stuck in his cliched pro-Palestinian mode that he can barely bring himself to look at what is really going on. And by the time he does, if he does, the story has moved on.

    I believe he is trying to be an Alan Jonston lookalike. He should be one of the first to be flushed. After Jonston, of course.


    • sue says:

      Quite. Some people might hold useful Jews to higher standards than useless Donnisons, but I’m definitely with you on this. He is stuck in his pro-Palestinian mode, and gives the impression that he’s content to stay there.


    • John Anderson says:

      Yes,  his repoting of the Mavi Marmara incident was memorably ignorant of the facts we could all see.   Or deliberately suppressing the clear facts.


  12. TrueToo says:

    Hmmm, I wanted to agree with you guys and leave it at that but for some reason the like/unlike function had vanished and I was also unable to post. So I refreshed the page to no avail and then closed the site and reopened it. That worked.

    Often when I try to access comments they don’t appear and I have to close and reopen the site to get them.

    Anywway, the Donnisons of the media will never grow up to be real journalists, simply because they cannot clear the prejudiced fog from in front of their eyes.