Yesterday, Today and (probably) Tomorrow.

You know the annual round-ups we get in the media at every New Year? This round-up is of items from the last couple of days, just to indicate the direction the BBC is taking.

The interview with bushy-bearded Qasim Rafiq, the former best friend of the underpants bomber who swears that nice Mr. Abdulmutallab couldn’t possibly have been radicalized in the UK, or at the UCL, or in the Islamic Society or while he was president of the Islamic Society. So that’s alright then. That’s proof enough for the BBC. “The BBC has learned that the underpants bomber wasn’t radicalized here, and that’s official.”

I’ve read countless articles about University Islamic Societies that describe them as highly radicalizing, and saying that some are actively recruiting, preying on and pressurizing Muslim undergraduates to turn towards extremism. The BBC must have heard about these because they have to know everything. The BBC is always learning this or that, but it evidently hasn’t learned to challenge something that everybody else in the entire world must be wondering why on earth they unquestioningly accept.

Next, the Today guest editor chose some right-on items for us to wake up to. One of them was an alternative Thought for the Day, as though one wasn’t enough-already. This thought was a poem written by revered Palestinian poet, the late Mahmoud Darwish. I’d have preferred something from Nonie Darwish myself, but I won’t be holding my breath.
I’ve nothing against Palestinian poetry especially as this particular poet kindly says he doesn’t hate Jews, just Zionists and Israel. His poetry is rather political as one might expect, but apparently that was not his intention, so I wonder if he would have been comfortable with the intro by guest editor Robert Wyatt’s favourite writer John Berger.
“For 60 years now the Palestinian people have been forcibly separated and exiled from their land, and Darwish’s poetry is about their struggle to keep faith and not to lose hope. It’s a poetry of resistance but at the same time it’s a poetry that admits loss and vulnerability, and absolutely refuses political rhetoric.”
Good. Pity John Berger doesn’t refuse political rhetoric too though. After an ominous period of rustling, he commenced reading the poem. About the mirage; about hope; about the slight difficulty with pronouncing r. And about the wose.
The poem was okay, but John Berger I could have done without.

I was going to comment about the Media Show on Wednesday but they took ages to put it on the website I so gave up. There’s an interesting thread on CiFWatch by Israelinurse about Mehdi Hasan. Here’s what Adloyada says in her comment:
“Mehdi Hasan is increasingly being given a “voice of Muslim opinion” and a “let’s show we’re inclusive by fielding a media man who happens to be Muslim” slot on BBC talk shows, thanks to the position he now holds on the “New Statesman”.
He was on BBC R4 “The Media Show’ just a couple of days ago, on Wednesday 30th, in the latter capacity, part of a panel chaired by Steve Hewlett (Guardian writer), consisting of Simon Jenkins (Guardian columnist), Emily Bell (The Guardian), senior media person who happens to be a woman) and Trevor Kavanagh (ex the Sun and so presumably a Tory just for balance).
All highly balanced–if you happen to think the BBC/Guardian world view is the core median balanced position from which all other views deviate.”

Next. The repeated coverage on BBC news 24 yesterday of award winning footage of Israel attacking Palestinians sheltering in a UN school. It was one of the finalists in the 2009 Rory Peck Awards. Not the winner. The incomplete picture Frank Gardner gave us in his narration somehow brought to mind another iconic bit of film, that of Mohammed Al Durah.

Now here’s something I didn’t see at all. Mahmoud Abbas’s glorification of Dalal Mughrabi, perpetrator of a bus hijacking in Israel that ended with the deaths of civilians and children. As Robin Shepherd points out “There is nothing on the BBC – though there is plenty about Gaza, one anniversary they do seem to be taking notice of.”

If this represents some of what we get from the BBC over a couple of days, no wonder fings aint what they used to be.

JOYFUL BBC – CLIMATE CHANGE IS A BELIEF….

This was regarded as so important that it was on the BBC News website front page

A man has been told he can take his employer to tribunal on the grounds he was unfairly dismissed because of his views on climate change.

Tim Nicholson, 42, of Oxford, was made redundant in 2008 by Grainger Plc in Didcot, as head of sustainability.
He said his beliefs had contributed to his dismissal and in March a judge ruled he could use employment equality laws to claim it was unfair.
But the firm appealed against this as it believed his views were political.

After the hearing on Monday, Mr Nicholson said he was delighted by the judgement for himself and other people who may feel they are discriminated against because of their views on climate change.
His solicitor, Shah Qureshi, said: “Essentially what the judgment says is that a belief in man-made climate change and the alleged resulting moral imperative is capable of being a philosophical belief and is therefore protected by the 2003 religion or belief regulations.”

Naturally the BBC is delighted. For years they have been shilling for the likes of Monbiot and Gore, pushing man made global warming as a political message and doing their best to ignore or demean anyone who questioned the theory. With judges veering towards the classification of the theory as a “belief” it could mean that critics could be identified as “climate change deniers”. From that it would only be a short step to the creation of denial as an offence against the “believers” and – hey presto – more money for Carter-Ruck and Schillings.

Stay tuned for the man made global warming message to become even more fervent as the true believers do their best to ratchet it up to messianic levels. Doubters will be demonised as servants of the great beast Anthropogenor (I’m not making that up – you’ve seen the end of days doomsday prediction that cost £6 million of your money) and cast out into the darkness –or, more likely sacked, fined or jailed.

Normally, of course, the BBC’s heart usually bleeds for people punished by the courts – but there are certain crimes that strike at everything the BBC holds dear so don’t hold your breath for any Newsnight features pimping sympathy for climate change deniers being hit by the full force of m’learned friends…..

HITCHENS ON BIAS…

Here is Peter Hitchens on BBC bias..

“Here, I believe, is proof that the BBC is institutionally biased against male conservatives. Not long ago, I received a call from a BBC Radio 4 person. It was not very flattering. They were having a big debate about Afghanistan.

And, as they were having great difficulty in finding anyone else to support Britain’s immediate withdrawal, would I please, please, please take part?

I said yes. Several days later, the same functionary called me and said they had now found a ‘female person’ to do the job instead – as if that person’s femaleness was a clinching argument.

Curious, I asked who this ‘female person’ was. ‘Erm, Lindsey someone,’ she replied. I’m still not sure if she was embarrassed or genuinely didn’t know who she had hired.

It turned out my replacement was Lindsey German, until a few months ago a member of the Central Committee of the Socialist Workers’ Party, a revolutionary Bolshevik organisation.

Does a Marxist Leninist Trotskyist really represent the 57 per cent of the British population who are against this daft intervention better than I do?

The BBC thinks so.”

BBC – Cameron On The Ropes After Irish Vote

On its website the BBC could hardly restrain its glee.

UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown has welcomed the “Yes” vote on the EU’s Lisbon Treaty in the Republic of Ireland referendum.
Mr Brown said the treaty was “good for the UK and good for Europe”.

Accompanied on the websites front page by a picture of a smiling Mr Brown it was if the last few days at Brighton had never existed. But there was also a BBC bonus. Not only had the Irish electorate come to their senses and submitted to the BBC position on the Lisbon Treaty but it spelt out trouble for those divided Tories currently languishing in the polls – and where did the BBC go to for that information? Why, “The Independent”, of course, quoting the helpful findings of a poll of Conservatives activists views of Lisbon conducted by website Conservativehome.

“The findings suggest that the damaging divisions on Europe which destabilised the last Tory government could resurface at the party’s annual conference in Manchester,” the newspaper suggests.

Cue Marr, Crick, Naughty and Robinson – you have your orders….

BBC AIRBRUSHING ANTI SEMITISM…

I received this from a B-BBC reader and thought to share it…

“This morning at 5.30 I had the opportunity to compare the difference between Sky and BBC World’s coverage of this story.

http://www.google.com/hostednews/ukpress/article/ALeqM5iGmuQwdsTmw7x3L1h1KcR-CmdilQ

Whilst Sky’s strap line and bulletin headlines platform the role of BRITISH diplomats who walked out during Ahmadinejad’s speech because of ‘alleged anti-semitic” ‘ comments (quote marks theirs), the BBC said merely that SOME diplomats had walked out because of ‘criticism’ of western policies and Israel (quote mark mine’).

Sky broadcast the speech at the 5.30 am in their bulletin, in the context of the British walkout and anti-semitism., You can view the speec here . http://news.google.co.uk/news/search?aq=f&pz=1&ned=uk&hl=en&q=british+diplomats+walk+out+UN+ahmedinajad

In it, the Iranian president lambasts Israel for actions leading to ‘genocide’ and then says how wrong it is that ‘a few thousand people’ world wide can have such an influence on banking, media and world policy – in fact repeating the whole protocols of the elders of Zion, Nazi conspiracy theory. Open Jewish world domination theory in the hall of the UN!

The difference between the two reports of verifiable fact was jaw-dropping. Do the BBC World editors hate Israel (and, it would seem, Jewish people world-wide) so much that they are no longer shocked by blatant anti-semitism?

The answer, of course, is YES.

SHILLING FOR DEATH…

BBC taking a Sympathetic view concerning the softening of the law on assisted suicide.

BBC via Mark Mardell giving thumbs up to the Obama leftist media blitz Stateside (‘Bama ignored Fox, of course. None so brave, eh?)
BBC giving us Ed Balls truly ludicrous “cuts” strategy positive spin.
News? No. Liberal propaganda? You betcha!

Passive Killing

Thanks to Pounce for drawing my attention to this example of BBC bias.

Six killed in gun battle! Home-owner killed! Politically motivated arrests!
Police raid! Allegations of torture! Zionist Agents!

All of this and more, but wait – Who has done these evil things?

Israel is not in the headline. Why not? Because this time Israel is not the culprit.

There doesn’t seem to be culprit at all.
In fact no-one in particular seems to have murdered anyone. Just Fighting. Fighting is what has killed six Palestinians.

That explains why the headline is not:
Palestinians murder Palestinians in West Bank Gun Battle.”

BBC headline writers have a habit of taking all responsibility away from Palestinians, who just die from ‘fighting’ whereas Israelis “kill militants” and “strike children,” and if any Israelis should die, it’s from Fighting, Rockets, or Explosions. You know, the ones that just happen.

Same Old Same Old

Q. What do you remember about the slap on the wrist given to the BBC by the BBC Trust’s Editorial Standards Committee?

A. Some of the complaints about bias in the Middle east Editor’s reporting were upheld.

All well and good. What has happened since? Has Jeremy Bowen changed? Has he been demoted? Has the reporting become less biased?
The Zionist Federation and the intrepid Jonathan Turner who tussled with the BBC for almost two years over this are not happy.

On April 16th they issued a press release stating exactly why they were not satisfied with the BBC’s response. Or lack thereof.

For example rephrasing of the web article was inadequate and not in accord with the trust’s findings.
The BBC recognises that ” there is no consensus view of history” and that “there are others who have different analysis – which of course they are entitled to.”
But Jeremy Bowen does not refer to the existence of “different analyses” Does he even realise there are any?

The Zionist Federation contends that the BBC’s biased reporting over the years has contributed to overt and covert hostility towards Israel and Jews, which has led to the racist acts against British Jews which they have statistically documented.

Even those who dispute that will wonder why so little has changed, and why Jeremy Bowen is still the BBC’s Middle East editor.

Different Strokes for Different Folks

Honest Reporting links to JJ Goldberg’s article in Columbia Journalism Review where he analyses and compares coverage of the “debunked allegations” of IDF abuses in Gaza. (I use the quotes because I’m quoting.)
He is interested in how the story is framed, and notes differences in the way the American and British press present the subject.

JJ Goldberg acknowledges that the US ‘Jewish lobby’ is a factor that both affects and influences the American Press’s gentler treatment of Israel, but explains that this is understandable, no more sinister than any other pressure from any other organised interest group, and no bad thing. He is asking: What’s wrong with a Jewish lobby? Why shouldn’t Jews have an interest group? The Jews are good guys and valuable to America.

“It’s almost a cliché these days to suggest that the presence of a well-organized Jewish community in America has a lot to do with the way Israel is treated by government and the media. It’s a mistake, though, to note the community’s ability to threaten and overlook its role as a leavening force in the larger culture. Jewish sensibilities help shape America’s sense of humor, U.S. attitudes toward civil rights, and much more. It would be astonishing if American Jews didn’t also influence America’s view of Israel—much as Irish Americans have helped mold attitudes toward Ireland.”

The article shows how the BBC’s Paul Wood seems to represent the British attitude. His reports, in sharp contrast, are blatantly critical of Israel, with emotive images accompanying inflammatory voiceovers, openly disapproving and condemnatory.

It is a fascinating exercise. What particularly interested me was the conclusion that:

“That’s a key difference between American and British coverage of the Middle East. The British Jewish community is well rooted, but it’s smaller—barely one-tenth the size of, say, the British Muslim community.”

It sort of hints that the ‘Muslim lobby’ has been busy influencing and affecting things here. If so, are we to assume that it’s understandable, natural, and quite okay, and we must accept that in Britain we have a culture that regards the phrase “Jewish Lobby” as shorthand for sinister cabal with dastardly intent, and the word Zionist as the embodiment of evil.

In saying this, I could be letting the Beeb off the hook, saying they’re only reflecting our culture.
But are they reflecting, or creating?

SUNDAY EVENING…

So, one day after D-day and the site is still here and I have been closely following your comments. I want to let you know that we will try and follow up all your positive and thoughtful suggestions, wherever this is possible.

There are a few things that I have decided ARE staying on blog – such as the Twitter bar. The reason is that this enables me to post a quick comment which may be on the BBC whenever I hear or see it. If some don’t like this, tough. Furthermore, it may be that the blogger platform is imperfect but trust me there is no such thing as a perfect platform.

Some people have commented regarding the siting of A Tangled Web and All Seeing Eye at the top of this site. I would simply point out the huge behind the scenes work that Geoff from the Eye makes to this site (Ever wondered who makes the weekly Question Time session run smoothly) and just like ATW he also picks up on BBC related issues – so both blogs are staying, linked here – to be augmented with others. The broader blogroll will also develop. This is WORK IN PROGRESS – but progress it is. So my thanks to all who come here – hope the shock of the new is now wearing off – and from tomorrow on I only want to talk about the lousy BBC and the bias it exudes. Hope you agree!

SUNDAY MORNING …

Anyone catch the Andrew Marr show this morning? Amazingly pro-Labour with Postie Johnson and luvvie Patrick Stewart bigging up Prudence. Johnson was on to slap down the Blears mutiny, of course. Meanwhile Marr himself commented that Labour had to be given credit for what they have already done for the Gurkhas.

And as an extra treat, Nicky Campbell’s “The Big Question” is debating should we be ASHAMED of our role in Iraq? Saddamite supporters in the audience. Total contempt for the British army. Universal agreement that the war was wrong because we were “lied” to and that weapons of mass destruction did not exist. No one too bothered about Saddam’s genocide. George Carey claims we brought terrorism into Iraq.

For further multiculti fun he also has a Druid on!

The look of this site might alter, the BBC agenda is fixed in aspic.

You’re Fired


“Trust is the foundation of the BBC. Audiences are at the heart of everything we do. We take pride in delivering quality. We respect each other. We are honest. We are impartial.”

The BBC Values, from the back of BBC Radio Devon presenter Graham Danton’s electronic entry card into the BBC building.

SUNDAY afternoon radio presenter Graham Danton has been abruptly sacked by the BBC after more than 20 years, leaving his loyal listeners confused at the lack of explanation.

In today’s Western Morning News there’s an article by Mr. Danton in which he reveals more. He begins by quoting Orwell’s “In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act.”

He feels his sacking was really because he “Highlighted uncomfortable topics”
“Every presenter has to obey the policy of BBC compliance. In effect, it means no presenter is fully trusted any more.”

Hosting a phone-in programme “two hours of never knowing what topic was coming next while having to play Devil’s Advocate, just me and a young lad who put the calls through to my desk”
“Now ( since Ross and Brand) it’s controlled by a producer… you go on air only if it’s approved by the producer…. some people say they’ll speak about the previous topic, be accepted, then speak their minds about something else……….. Little red warning triangles used to appear on my telephone screen……

“Since last autumn, a few minutes before my programme went on air a senior member of staff would question me as to what I was going to talk about…..by that time I was forbidden to talk about:

  • politics
  • crime
  • immigration
  • religion (on a Sunday)
  • the EU
  • Islam
  • health matters
  • even cats (would offend cat lovers)

“Since I left school in 1948 I have had eight employers…..the only one I am ashamed to have worked for is the BBC.”

His electronic entry card was deleted within two hours of his dismissal.

Further fallout

It’s been hard to avoid comment about the Beeb’s bias in the national press lately, but this article by novelist DJ Taylor on the Beeb’s US election coverage is worth flagging up:

While everybody in the room – party cheerleaders excepted – clearly wanted Obama to win, those in charge were doing a very good impression of studied neutrality. It was all a far cry from recent British general elections, where the anti-Conservative bias of certain BBC pundits… has been so flagrant as to make you wonder exactly how they got away with it… There is no great mystery, of course, behind this sudden excess of timidity. In the wake of the Brand/Ross disaster the corporation is simply terrified of offending anybody.

Worth mentioning, too, that Taylor’s a member of the Labour party, and this is from the left-leaning Independent.

And, sticking with leftist newspapers sticking it to the Beeb over the last couple of days, here’s Sue Carroll in the Mirror on Ed Stourton’s description of the Queen mother as a “ghastly old bigot”:

When the Queen Mother died, Ed Stourton condemned a tabloid newspaper for publishing details of her last moments, claiming the publication was “quite comfortable in the gutter”… Would his book about political correctness have made news without him shopping the nation’s favourite gran? In a word No.

Welcome to the gutter, Ed.

“The BBC was meant to be politically neutral, but …”

Alex Deane, former aide to David Cameron, at the Social Affairs Unit blog, on a little vignette in a Telegraph Joan Bakewell interview.

(For post-diluvian readers, Joan Bakewell was the Kirsty Wark of her late-Sixties to mid-Eighties day, popping up all over the BBC either as presenter or pundit. Famously described by Frank Muir as ‘the thinking man’s crumpet’).