|Israel has "failed to get on with its neighbours"?
"Despite all the foreign aid and support, Israel has spectacularly failed to get on with its neighbours. Does Israel deserve a future?"Comments the Scottish blogger Calton Hill:
other Al Beeb newsreaders have done, Maxine Mawhinney greeted him like an old, fond friend.
"To suggest that any nation does not deserve a future is tantamount to advocating genocide and Calton is wondering if, in fact, the question constitutes a hate crime under our new legislation on such matters. Perhaps someone should phone the police and find out. What is encouraging is that all four of the panel stated quite clearly that Israel has a right to exist and two at least were just as shocked as Calton was at the way in which the question was framed. In these days of heightened tension in the Middle East it is quite reasonable to question whether the actions of Israel or any other nation are legitimate or proportionate, however, questioning a nation's right to continued existence is not reasonable. Nor is it helpful."
Israel's neighbours have failed to get on with Israel!
I had thought that Ben Brown, reporting from Ashkelon, was a model of objectivity, but today his reportage seemed marred by what I suspect to be a mandated editorial line focusing on "disproportion" and "assymetrical warfare". These were the allegations that Brown put to IDF spokeswoman Lt-Col Avital Leibovich today. and he seemed to agree with them.
|A rocket fell in Ashdod this afternoon (photo: Jean Vercors)
That half of Gaza's residents are children is something that Donnison and Davies have been keenly emphasising this weekend, apparently to drive home to viewers just how ruthless the nation across the border that has the temerity to protect its citizens from Hamas rockets is being. Yes, I know that there have been harrowing incidents, but unlike the Israelis Hamas fails to provide bomb shelters and uses its civilians, old and young, as human shields. I do not blame Donnison and Davies for being upset at what they have witnessed, but it should not ostensibly affect their coverage or lead to snide condemnation of or value judgements against Israel.
Davies, for example, reported acidly today that Israel targeted the home of a Hamas official "regardless of who might be inside" resulting in the deaths of all nine occupants.
|Ashdod this afternoon (photo: Jean Vercors)
"This is one of the poorest regions on the face of the planet," emphatically declared an uncharacteristically partisan and propagandistic Myrie in talking to Osama Damo, a Save the Children official in Gaza.
Myrie then interviewed Gil Hoffman of the Jerusalem Post, who began to give the Israeli viewpoint, stressing that Israel is targeting terrorists who are indiscriminately attacking the Israeli population. But Myrie had little patience with such realities. He was more concerned with reminding Hoffman of the fate of that Hamas household of nine that was killed today by an Israeli airstrike.
Hoffman effectively found himself on the receiving end of a hectoring lecture, managing to get in the fact that 24 truckloads of aid has entered Gaza from Israel (and adding, justifiably, that this is a rare gesture from one combatant to another) before an impatient Myrie was off again, telling him aggressively that Israel's response: "doesn't look fair" (there again was that "disproportionate" response and "assymetrical warfare" argument that the BBC have been pushing today.)
|Ashdod residents, shaken but unbowed (photo: Jean Vercors)
However, compared to previous days, this appeared cursory.
More might, as well, have been made of the fact that Hamas is sending missiles into areas where there are numbers of Arabs as well as Jews, thus again displaying their callousness towards their own people.
And so we await the half-truths and distortions that the BBC on the new week will bring ...
(Interesting post here)