Open letter to new Director-General.
As an ordinary licence-payer I would like to add my congratulations and good wishes in your new position.
I would, however, ask you to seriously and urgently review the BBC's pro-Israel stance, which is perhaps exemplified in extremis by the BBC having broadcast a straightforward untruth, in the matter of the Rachel Corrie civil court action, and I have a complaint ongoing. The BBC said Israeli soldiers were killed on that day, and even Israel says that none were.
Last year, on the day Israel killed 9 Palestinians by bombing, and the Palestinians fired one "rocket" (home-made mortar) into Israel, hitting an empty bus, the BBC reported only the damage to the bus. This is the level of bias your viewers and listeners have become used to. Other obvious examples are "Death in the Med" which was found to have committed three breaches of the Broadcasting Code, bleeping the word "Palestine" from Radio 1X and of course refusing to broadcast the Disasters and Emergency Committee's appeal in January 2009.
When 1,027 Palestinian prisoners were released from Israeli dungeons in exchange for ONE Israeli soldier - Gilad Shalit - BBC television broadcast an "all-day" special, taking in the GMT news slot at 12.30, with a programme called The Gilad Shalit Release.
Perhaps the worst offender is Radio 4's Today programme, which recently devoted 7 minutes to Israel Memorial Day, with no similar recognition of any Arabic festival day, and not even of St. George's Day. That is how strongly ingrained the pro-Israel mentality is within the BBC.
Mr. Naughtie, on the Today programme, interviewing a Middle East expert about the newly-elected government of Egypt, asked the expert what implications it had for Israel. You would expect that in Tel Aviv, but in London I would expect a question about the implications for Britain. It did not come.
And again last Friday morning, the Today programme featured a "puff" for Sodastream which sells illegally sourced products from the illegal settlement of Ma'aleh Adumim, in the illegally occupied West Bank. These settlements are condemned by most world governments, including the UK. The ground was taken by military force on ordinary families, whose houses were demolished, and any survivors transported to refugee camps. To add insult to injury, the BBC interviewer told listeners the factory is in Israel, which it most definitely is not, being on the Mishor Adumimindustrial estate. And to make matters even worse, the BBC - BBC - broadcast almost an entire television advertisement soundtrack for Sodastream, which must be in breach of the Code.
So please add this important issue of pro-Israel bias to your no-doubt bursting "to do" list. You will find a huge volume of complaints, with great details of factual and self-evident instances, and hardly ever any balance from the Palestinian or Arab/Iranian side.
It was gratifying to hear an Islamic interviewee on Saturday morning, though bullied as usual by Mr. Humprhys. But that is only the third instance I can remember, of any Islamic spokesman on BBC radio over the past 2 years, whereas Israel's Mr. Regev is broadcast so frequently on the BBC, he should be on the payroll.
Many thanks, and please restore our BBC to its former glory. Especially in the Middle East, where the name is reviled (except of course in Israel).
Yours sincerely,[/i](name and address supplied)[size=85][/size]