‘BBC Humanitarian appeal’
As fresh and recent an oxymoron as you could hope for.
At least, the BBC used to air Humanitarian Appeals, only now it appears that they are just too controversial and might upset ‘public confidence in the BBC’s impartiality in the context of an ongoing news story’.
Most odd, as previously the BBC have aired DEC appeals for The Sudan, The Congo, Rwanda, Kosovo and many others in the past 46 years and never mentioned this before.
Mark Thomson, acting Head of the British Broadcasting Corporation, however has clamped down on letting the British Public, his wage-payers, make their own decision on whether they would consider an appeal for a broken and desperate people as ‘impartial’.
Even under the combined pressure of over 100 MP’s, many Archbishops and other clergy speaking out against the move, he remains unmoved.
Even minor insurgent activity from the Most Honourable Tony Benn, who broke into his interview on BBC Radio 4, and during a television appearance on Saturday to read out the Post Office Box address to send donations to the DEC has left the leader of the BBC unmoved, even while his staff disagree with his stance.
Perhaps being really impartial is the point.
In fact, so impartial, that Mr. Mark Thomson has failed to mention his visit to Israel in November 2005, where he held “peace talks” with Ariel Sharon over alleged anti-Israeli bias in the BBC which were widely held by Israelis as “evidence that Thompson, who took office in 2004, intended to build bridges with the country’s political class.”
An source at the BBC said Mr. Thompson, whose wife, Jane Blumberg, is Jewish, “has a far greater regard for the Israeli cause than some of his predecessors”, according to an article in the Independent Newspaper of 29th November 2005.
According to the article, sources at the BBC “also suspect that it heralds a “softening” to the corporation’s unofficial editorial line on the Middle East” and that “Understandably, an official BBC spokesman was anxious to downplay talk of an exclusively pro-Israeli charm offensive.”
I bet he was “anxious”.
Of course, Mr. Mark Thompson couldn’t possibly be biased.
He works for the BBC.
Or does the BBC work for him?
Meanwhile, the Disasters Emergency Commission really does need your help to get aid to the suffering civilians of the Gaza strip, so I would beg you to go to their website and donate whatever you can to help your fellow human beings.