Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Al-Beeb's idea of balance and fairness

Take a look at this article from the BBC.

"Palestinian rocket kills Israeli" - says the headline.

An Israeli woman has been killed and one man injured in a Palestinian rocket attack on the town of Sderot, Israeli officials say.

No mention of whether the victims were Israeli civilians or not. Notice also that it wasn't just a single rocket, but part of a barrage of six missiles. The BBC reveal the number of rockets, but do not refer to it as a barrage.

Police say six rockets fell in and around Sderot, close to the border with Gaza in southern Israel.

Notice also the qualification "Israeli officials say" or "police say". The way the BBC phrase the barrage is quite telling too - the rockets just "fell". What, like snow falls? They didn't just fall, they were fired into and struck or exploded in and around Sderot.

We're barely into a piece about, supposedly, an Israeli civilian killed by a deliberate Palestinian rocket attack on a civilian population Al-Beeb have to bring in some "balance".

Last week 18 Palestinian civilians were killed in Beit Hanoun, in an Israeli strike blamed on a technical failure.

Why is this relevant? Unless the BBC are trying to suggest that the deaths of 18 Palestinians in an accidental shelling is justification for Palestinian attacks? That can not be the case as we will see. Notice how this uses the term "civilians" which the BBC avoid doing when referring to the Israeli victims. It's also noticeable that this incident is presented as fact with no qualification such as "Palestinian officials say".

Qassam rockets are fired towards Israel by Palestinian militants in Gaza on a daily basis.

"Fired towards"? Do they ever get there? The BBC would like you to think not.

They rarely cause death or serious injury, but do cause fear and panic.

The standard BBC cop out when faced with the truth about the non-stop Palestinian attacks on Israel. So these missiles are fired into Sderot on a daily basis and have been going on for some time. Which means the mention by the BBC of the 18 dead Palestinians has no relevance at all - except, as I said, for the BBC to give justification for Palestinian attacks on Israel.

In all, nine people have been killed in Israel by Qassam rockets since the first fatality in June 2004.

That's 9 people killed in 2 years. Hardly a "rare" occurrence then. Once again, please notice the use of the term "people" as opposed to civilians. This is important when you consider the next line. Remember, this is a piece about the deliberate rocketing and death of an Israeli civilian by Palestinians. It's not an accidental death or collateral damage - Israeli civilians are the intended target.

Almost 400 Palestinians, many of them civilians, have died in such operations since late June 2006.

Got that? The BBC reports it as fact - again, without the "officials say" qualification. Notice also the use of "civilians" a term not used for Israeli victims of Palestinian violence. Remember, this is supposed to be an article about the killing of an Israeli civilian during a Palestinian barrage on a town in Israel - yet much of the article refers to Palestinian deaths or tries to play down the effect of such a daily bombardment.

This is the BBC's idea of "balance". Every Israeli death has a justification, while any Palestinian killed does not.

No comments: