Remember when in 2009 the BBC reneged on its commitment to the Disasters Emergency Committee by refusing to run ads to raise money for the homeless and destitute in Gaza, arguing that such broadcasts were not charitable but political (presumably because that was the way Israel saw them). The BBC’s intransigence infuriated the British public and even embarrassed the British government, which was forced to criticise the BBC position.
Well now the BBC is striking out on its own to redefine international law and British foreign policy in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
In reports it has started to describe all of Jerusalem as Israeli, as Israel itself does, rather than just the western side of the city.
When challenged by the Palestinian Solidarity Campaign, the BBC Trust refused to consider the complaint based on the advice of the BBC’s Senior Editorial Strategy Advisor, Leanne Buckle.
Being even more pro-Israel than the current government, the Trust concluded:
The advisor [Buckle] acknowledged that Israel’s sovereignty over the whole of Jerusalem was not recognized under international law. However, she considered that Israel had de facto control over the entire city in a political, administrative and military sense. She also noted that Jerusalem was administered as a single entity by the Jerusalem municipal authority which made no distinction between East and West.
Oh, I see. So Israel’s self-serving interpretation of international law is all that counts for the BBC. On this kind of logic, maybe the BBC should start calling most of the West Bank, so-called Area C, “Israel” too.