Most websites have a defined flavour, philosophy or political outlook, but categorising and compartmentalising things too readily leads to dismissing them out of hand, and B-BBC is lumbered with, and perhaps hampered by, a right-wing label or some other hackle-raising tag such as Zionist, which serves only to obstruct communication.
I’m sure many B-BBCers scroll past my contributions. That is a pity, but abstention is preferable to ill-informed anti-Israel sniping.
As it happens, I’m not a pro-Israel web-warrier. What motivates me is the injustice of the BBC’s one-sided presentation of matters related to Israel, and the harm this is doing, not only to Jews, but to society as a whole.
Robin Shepherd draws our attention to a comment made by one of ‘British Jewry’s senior leaders’ who criticises Israel in exactly the same way, and for exactly the same perceived misdemeanors that any run of the mill BBC follower might come up with, but with the additional complaint that Israel is giving ‘him’ a bad name. For this unfortunate, but in some ways understandable situation, I blame such people’s inability to look beyond the BBC and the MSM. After all British Jews are the same as any other Brit – almost indistinguishable from the real thing. (That’s a joke) Why would they not be as gullible as the next man, the one permanently stuck on that wretched Clapham omnibus?
The trouble is, anti-Israel campaigners use Jewish critics of Israel as aces in a pack choc-full of left-wing Israeli and Jewish human rights groups who are willing to hand over all the low-hanging fruit the vultures crave, on a plate, peeled, pitted and sliced.
I’m leading to something else, however. The founder of Human Rights Watch is a person one would hope the BBC would sit up and take notice of. He’s even a strong supporter of Obama, and certainly no right-wing mouth frother. Robert L Bernstein. In 2009 he criticised his own organisation:
“Human Rights Watch has lost critical perspective” he said.
“Leaders of Human Rights Watch know that Hamas and Hezbollah chose to wage war from densely populated areas, deliberately transforming neighbourhoods into battlefields. They know that more and better arms are flowing into both Gaza and Lebanon and are poised to strike again. And they know that this militancy continues to deprive Palestinians of any chance for the peaceful and productive life they deserve. Yet Israel, the repeated victim of aggression, faces the brunt of Human Rights Watch’s criticism.”
H/T Elder of Ziyon (again)
On November 10th 2010, 88 year old Robert L Bernstein gave a lengthy and illuminating speech at the University of Nebraska at Omaha. He tackled everything, from his own reasons for founding Human Rights Watch, his resignation from the chair of HRW in 1998 at the age of 75, and the enormous subject of HRW and the Middle East.
Of the UN Human Rights Commission: “so critical of Israel that any fair-minded person would disqualify them from participating in attempts to settle issues involving Israel, got the idea that they could get prominent Jews known for their anti-Israel views to head their investigations.”
He covers Richard Goldstone, the flotilla incident, the nature of the enemy Israel is facing, and how the Human Rights Watch board ignores factors that they are well aware of, but which don’t suit their anti-Israel agenda; and all this flying in the face of what HRW is meant to be about.
I was intrigued by the excerpts I read on EOZ blog, so I printed off this speech, seven pages of it, to read properly away from the screen. I recommend it. If only the BBC personnel would have a look at it, and allow it to filter through the communication barrier which precludes pro-Israel sentiment from reaching their hearts and minds.
While researching Robert Bernstein I came across this hate-filled rant from someone who has let his twisted imagination run away with him, named William C Carlotti. So for balance I’m including it in this post.
For your information, if you haven’t scrolled past, I restrict my pro-Israel advocacy to this blog. Because, 1) I hope to catch the eye of the reader who would dismiss a wholly pro-Israel blog out of hand, and, 2) I am interested in the BBC’s role in a creating a climate where anti Israel feeling flourishes, and exists in abundance in an otherwise intelligent public, which includes Mick Davis and his ilk.
If you have been, thanks for listening.