Eretz Israel is our unforgettable historic homeland...The Jews who will it shall achieve their State...And whatever we attempt there for our own benefit will redound mightily and beneficially to the good of all mankind. (Theodor Herzl, DerJudenstaat, 1896)

We offer peace and amity to all the neighbouring states and their peoples, and invite them to cooperate with the independent Jewish nation for the common good of all. The State of Israel is ready to contribute its full share to the peaceful progress and development of the Middle East.
(From Proclamation of the State of Israel, 5 Iyar 5708; 14 May 1948)

With a liberal democratic political system operating under the rule of law, a flourishing market economy producing technological innovation to the benefit of the wider world, and a population as educated and cultured as anywhere in Europe or North America, Israel is a normal Western country with a right to be treated as such in the community of nations.... For the global jihad, Israel may be the first objective. But it will not be the last. (Friends of Israel Initiative)

Thursday, 8 March 2012

At Al Beeb's CoJo: Fisking 101

Robert Fisk of The Independent would appear to be everything the BBC could require in one of its own reporters, given his splenetic hostility to the United States and to Israel.

Back in 2006 he was an honoured castaway on the BBC's "Desert Island Discs" programme, giving freely of his opinions on the Middle East, including Israel, to presenter Kirsty Young.

Mr Fisk, however, seems to have upset Al Beeb recently, if the presence of a piece by Stuart Hughes, one of Al Beeb's World Affairs producers, on the BBC College of Journalism (CoJo) website is any indication:
'Few journalists polarise opinion as sharply as Robert Fisk of The Independent.
For more than three decades, Fisk's impassioned writing on Middle Eastern affairs, and his sustained criticism of Israel and the United States, has won him many awards and many more critics.
Conservative commentators in particular have long dissected and rebutted his articles line by line - to the extent that "fisking" has become a term in its own right, defined as "the practice of savaging an argument and scattering the tattered remnants to the four corners of the internet."
Last weekend, Fisk ... was in typically combative form. Instead of attacking Western foreign policy, however, he turned his ire (not for the first time) on another of his favoured targets - his fellow foreign correspondents....
The article - published just over a week after the deaths in Homs of Marie Colvin and Remi Ochlik - provoked a furious response. Many senior and well-respected journalists voiced anger at what they regarded as Fisk's disrespectful, out-dated and even dangerous views.
"Fisk correctly identifies there are plenty in our profession with an over-healthy appreciation of their own ego," the BBC correspondent Gabriel Gatehouse told me in an email from Libya.
"He should know, for Fisk is one of the most egregious practitioners of this kind of journalism," Gatehouse added archly.'
Read the entire piece here and make of  it what you will.

Should you have the time and inclination to linger longer at CoJo, have a look at what it teaches about "Impartiality" - something that Al Beeb practises more in the breach than in the observance, of course.

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