So the shaggy dog-stoning story turned out to be out of synch with the actuality. The delight with which the BBC wagged its tail over the story contrasts starkly with their low-profile retraction. Their hasty, nay reckless, promotion of it might have been embarrassing if it had concerned any other topic, but being about Israel, well….. give a dog a bad name.
Why, one might ask, would the BBC go to the trouble of announcing it on news bulletins with obvious glee? Why would it become one of the most popular stories on the BBC website? Simples. In their relentless quest to sanitise Islam and demonise Judaism, all the elements were there. Dog. Stoning. Religion. Jews are as mad as the mad mullahs, with cruelty to animals thrown in for good measure. Nice one.
The retractions are a different story. ‘We’re sorry we fell for it, but it was understandable. We may have been barking up the wrong tree, but we still think it’s possibly true. The Jews deny it, but they would, wouldn’t they.’
Other news organs are more explicit. Even Islam Newsroom dot com.
Many single out the BBC’s ‘mistake’ for special mention.
“The story’s only deficiency is that it comes up short in the being-factually-true department.”
The BBC has been caught with its pants down, but now that Israel is permanently in the dog house, who’s bovvered?
Here’s one I prepared earlier. It concerns another broadcasting malfunction that required a retraction and a teensy weensy apology.
I was in Iona recently and saw that their Abbey is a popular tourist attraction. It reminded me that John Bell of the Iona Community is a regular contributor to Thought For The Day, the Today programme’s daily reminder of goodness and Godliness. I understand that the Iona community supports the BDS campaign, and if that is indeed the case, it ties up with this. (From Wikipedia.)
“He [John Bell] is a frequent broadcaster, and often presents programmes on the BBC, majoring on contemporary religious songs from various parts of the world.
In 2005, the BBC apologised for a broadcast by Bell in which he suggested that a Muslim corporal conscripted into the Israeli army had been jailed for refusing to shoot Palestinian children. The broadcast itself was a fairly innocuous plea for understanding between the two sides with conflicting claims in the Middle East, yet was interpreted by those of one allegiance as an attack. Neither the BBC nor the Israeli military were able to find any evidence supporting the story or the existence of a soldier fitting the description. It was further pointed out that Israeli Arabs are not subject to conscription. Bell acknowledged that parts of his story were incorrect and that the broadcast could have been interpreted by some parties as “furtive racism”, though he countered that “such a conjecture would be completely untrue.”. It was also reported that a spokesman at the Israeli embassy said, “We appreciate that the BBC has apologised; however, it is a pity as the damage is irreparable.[…]”
Muslim! Jailed! Israeli Army! Shooting! Palestinian! Children.!
Good gracious me. whatever next!
Who could ‘those of one allegiance’ possibly be? Oh, how innocuous, this little plea for understanding. Or was that more of a plea for misunderstanding?
Carry on pleading all you like on the BBC John, and should any furtive racism creep in, the BBC will issue a miniscule apology to make it all better.