The BBC World Service’s idea of ‘context’ to rocket attacks on Israeli civilians

BBC Watch

The lead item in the November 13th edition of the BBC World Service radio programme OS – formerly ‘Outside Source’ – was described in its synopsis thus:

“It’s the heaviest exchange of aerial fire between Israeli soldiers and Hamas militants since the full-blown conflict in 2014. The violence follows an Israeli special forces operation inside Gaza which went wrong late on Sunday, causing the deaths of Palestinian militants and an Israeli soldier. We hear from local people living in Gaza.”

Presenter Ben James told listeners (from 00:11 here): [emphasis in italics in the original, emphasis in bold added]

James: “We’re your guide to the important stuff happening now and the story at the beginning of our news bulletin then is certainly the one we’re going to spend a great deal of time on on this edition of the programme – what’s been happening between Israel and Gaza in…

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Comments on a Few Past Events And Trying to Cover Current

Beyond the Cusp

By now, the world has reported upon the flare-up in Gaza resulting from an intelligence gathering operation by Israeli Special Forces who was found out and an intense firefight broke out. Six Hamas fighters and one high-ranking Hamas officer, Nur Barakeh, the deputy commander eastern battalion of Hamas’ Izz Al-Din Al-Qassam Brigades in Khan Yunis, were killed. An IDF officer identified only as Lt. Col. M. was killed and a second officer was injured and was evacuated to the Soroka Hospital in Be’er Sheva. The hospital said on Monday morning that the officer underwent an operation and is listed in moderate and stable condition. This was instantly a “Breaking News” update and addressed closer to an editorial condemning the Israelis for mounting an operation into Gaza. Some reports claimed that the Israeli forces were caught invading Hamas territory. Yes, Hamas Territory as if a terrorist group controlling an area where…

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DEBATE: What Happened to Arab Support for the Palestinians?


Q: While the continuing influence of the Palestinians on the Arab world should not be underestimated, the current landscape in the Middle East is bringing new policy priorities to the fore. As Israel’s ambassador to Washington, Ron Dermer, recently observed, “The Arab states are no longer dancing to the Palestinians’ tune.” BESA joins the debate by posing the question: What has happened to Arab support for the Palestinians?

Respondents: Sarah Feuer, Jonathan Schanzer, Asaf Romirowsky,
Michael Wilner, Hillel Frisch, Neri Zilber, James Dorsey

I would perhaps reframe the question. It’s not that Arab countries have decided to withdraw their support for the Palestinians, but rather the nature of that support has become fragmented. This shift reflects the more general fragmentation afflicting the Arab world since the uprisings of 2011. With some states still reeling from the aftershocks of the “Arab Spring,” a resultant prioritization of domestic security and economic concerns on the part of key countries such as Egypt, as well as intra-Arab disputes that continue to simmer or intensify, the geopolitical bandwidth of many Arab countries has narrowed at the expense of the Palestinian cause. It has been downgraded from the top spot it traditionally enjoyed in these states’ foreign policy priorities (in rhetoric, if not always in action). The ongoing schism within the Palestinian national movement has likewise undermined Palestinian efforts to solicit and receive assistance.

via DEBATE: What Happened to Arab Support for the Palestinians?

Business as Usual as UN Committee Passes Nine Resolutions Slamming Israel in Single Day


A special committee of the United Nations General Assembly on Friday voted in favor of nine resolutions attacking the State of Israel — with the rest of the world left unmentioned.

The resolutions were passed in quick succession by the General Assembly’s “Fourth Committee,” which is also known as the “Special Political and Decolonization Committee.”

While the committee’s mandate covers a host of disconnected issues from peacekeeping to the uses of outer space, much of the focus of its work concerns the Palestinian question. In political terms, the committee is a significant source of support for UNRWA, the UN body dedicated solely to Palestinian refugees of the 1948 war and their descendants. It also operates the “The Special Committee to Investigate Israeli Practices Affecting the Human Rights of the Palestinian People and Other Arabs of the Occupied Territories” — which created in 1968 at the instigation of the Soviet Union and its Arab allies.

Friday’s resolutions saw Israel condemned for alleged human rights abuses, its “occupation” of eastern Jerusalem, and its “occupation” of the Golan Heights captured from Syria during the 1967 Six-Day War. The ongoing civil war in Syria itself, and the continuing abuse of human rights in the devastated Arab country, made no appearance in Friday’s deliberations.

via Business as Usual as UN Committee Passes Nine Resolutions Slamming Israel in Single Day

Terrorists and rockets disappear in BBC news reports

BBC Watch

h/t AB

When the BBC News website reported the November 11th incident east of Khan Younis in the Gaza Strip in which an Israeli Special Forces officer was killed and another wounded in an exchange of fire that also left six Hamas members and one PRC operative dead, it correctly noted that following the incident, seventeen rockets had been launched from the Gaza Strip at Israeli civilian communities.

However, several other BBC reports have erased those rocket attacks and/or the fact that all the Palestinians killed in the incident were members of terror groups.

Listeners to the BBC World Service radio programme ‘World Update’ on November 12th were informed in a news bulletin (from 24:47 here) that: [emphasis in bold added]

“Israeli Special Forces have carried out a raid on the Gaza Strip. An Israeli officer, a Hamas military commander and another six Palestinians were killed during…

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Abbas Reveals the Palestinian Demands

Beyond the Cusp

Mahmoud Abbas revealed to Russian President Vladimir Putin, “We state that from now on we refuse to cooperate in any form with the U.S. in its status of a mediator, as we stand against its actions.” This was a bit of an introduction to their real stance, which is actually no different than it has been since Yasser Arafat or Grand Mufti of Jerusalem Mohammed Amin al-Husseini (Arabic: محمد أمين الحسين); they want it all with no Jewish State, only an Arab Muslim state where the Jews accept Islamic superiority. In a recent speech commemorating fourteen years of the death of Yasser Arafat, his mentor, stated, “The ‘Deal of the Century’ will not pass and the fate of the land of Palestine will be decided by the Palestinian people.” These remarks were quoted by Channel 10 News which went further claiming, “We are remaining on our land and we will…

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Islam Classes In Germany


DORTMUND, Germany — It was the second week of Islam class, and the teacher, Mansur Seddiqzai, stood in front of a roomful of Muslim teens and pointed to the sentence on the chalkboard behind him: “Islam does not belong to Germany.”

He scanned the room and asked, “Who said this?”

Hands shot up. “The AfD?” one student with a navy blue headscarf said, referring to Germany’s far-right anti-refugee party. “No,” Seddiqzai shook his head. “Seehofer,” tried another. “Yes, and who is that?” “A minister,” said a third.

Finally, someone put it all together, identifying Horst Seehofer, the head of Bavaria’s conservative Christian Social Union and Chancellor Angela Merkel’s interior minister and coalition partner, who has on multiple occasions threatened to torpedo her government over the issue of immigration.

“Yes, that’s right,” Seddiqzai said, turning to the others. “And what do you think? Is he correct?”

via Islam Classes In Germany