Jeremy Bowen has been accused of being anti-Semitic after tweeting that Israel Prime Minister, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, when he addressed the US Congress ‘once again plays the Holocaust card ‘.
Bowen is upset that people find his words offensive..
The BBC defends him…
A BBC spokesperson said: “Jeremy was using Twitter and journalism shorthand whilst live-tweeting PM Netanyahu’s speech. The context of his comment is that a major part of PM Netanyahu’s critique of the proposed Iran deal was based on the spectre of another holocaust. Jeremy’s tweet was designed to reflect that context. He absolutely refutes any suggestion of antisemitism.”
‘Journalistic shorthand’? So the BBC is once again excusing bad or malign journalism by telling us that their professional journalists are unable to produce coherent and intelligent comment when streaming comment ‘live’ just as they excused Tim Wilcox’s suggestion in the wake of the Charlie Hebdo killings that Jews in Europe should expect to be attacked because of Israel’s actions.
It’s not as if Bowen is sat in the audience with his iPhone…he’s sat in the journalist’s ‘edit room’ with all the equipment necessary to double check what is said in the speech…
Having looked at Bowen’s Twitter stream it is apparent that such failings are not the result of working ‘live’ but a determined attempt to attack Netanyahu. Bowen’s comments are entirely negative and overly critical, if not just plain wrong, of Netanyahu’s speech.
During a Netanyahu speech at AIPAC a day earlier Bowen Tweets this….
Bowen goes down the ‘Jewish Lobby’ route…not as if every other interest group doesn’t have ‘lobby’s’ but you might think so from BBC comment….
Back to Netanyahu’s speech to Congress and you can see Bowen eager to criticise the speech…..
Trouble is that Netanyahu didn’t say that…he said that only if Iran increases the number of centrifuges enormously it could make nuclear weapon fuel in weeks once the agreement expires…as confirmed by Kerry…..with the present number of centrifuges such a scenario would take longer…but even then Israel assesses that would be less than a year…as said in the speech…
Iran’s nuclear program would be left largely intact, Iran’s break-out time would be very short — about a year by U.S. assessment, even shorter by Israel’s.
Then we get to the bit Bowen Tweeted about….
Iran’s Supreme Leader says that openly. He says, Iran plans to have 190,000 centrifuges, not 6,000 or even the 19,000 that Iran has today, but 10 times that amount — 190,000 centrifuges enriching uranium. With this massive capacity, Iran could make the fuel for an entire nuclear arsenal and this in a matter of weeks, once it makes that decision.
My long-time friend, John Kerry, Secretary of State, confirmed last week that Iran could legitimately possess that massive centrifuge capacity when the deal expires.
Bowen then tries to suggest Iran’s brand of Islamic terrorism and expansionism is totally different to the ‘Islamists’….
As Iran’s proxy armies are rampaging across the Middle East and Iran has indicated its desire to ‘wipe Israel off the map’ and works closely with Hamas some might think Netanyahu has a point about the dangers of Iran.
And finally back to the so-called ‘Holocaust card’. Did Netanyahu ‘play’ that card?
He certainly mentioned it…firstly in the context that Iran poses not a problem just to Israel but to the world…just as the Nazis were not just a problem for the Jews….
Iran’s regime is not merely a Jewish problem, any more than the Nazi regime was merely a Jewish problem. The 6 million Jews murdered by the Nazis were but a fraction of the 60 million people killed in World War II. So, too, Iran’s regime poses a grave threat, not only to Israel, but also the peace of the entire world.
Later in the speech, the bit Bowen thinks is ‘playing the Holocaust card’, he says this……
My friend, standing up to Iran is not easy. Standing up to dark and murderous regimes never is. With us today is Holocaust survivor and Nobel Prize winner Elie Wiesel.
Elie, your life and work inspires to give meaning to the words, “never again.”
And I wish I could promise you, Elie, that the lessons of history have been learned. I can only urge the leaders of the world not to repeat the mistakes of the past.
Not to sacrifice the future for the present; not to ignore aggression in the hopes of gaining an illusory peace.
Israel is all about the Holocaust, it was created as a safe haven for Jews in recognition of the threats that they face as an often persecuted minority, threats that once again Jews are having to face in Europe, threats that the BBC tries to downplay or excuse as ‘acceptable’ because of Israel’s defensive actions.
The BBC itself constantly issues ‘warnings from history’ about the threat of the ‘Far Right’ goose-stepping its way across Europe again, strange that Bowen thinks Israel shouldn’t be allowed to raise the spectre of a similar danger, not just to the Jews, but to the world posed, this time, by Iran.
It does look like Bowen has been caught ‘playing the ‘playing the Holocaust card’ card’ ….a card played by the critics of Israel and Jews….The Jewish Chronicle saying…
Mr Bowen did what only the antisemitic extremists used to do, reduce the invocation of the Holocaust to a common sense indicator of ‘Zionist’ bad faith and something to disdain.
Bowen’s ‘once again’ damns him completely.
Carelessness, bad journalism or bad will? You decide.