All that you have is your soul (Tracy Chapman).

Friday, 23 January 2009

Channel 4 - Hamas's Propoganda Tool

Over the entire period when the war in Gaza was taking place, I deliberately avoided obtaining my news from the British Media.

On the one occasion that I happened to see the BBC news headlines, when the presenter casually mentioned that "x" number of Palestinians had been killed whilst "x" number of Israelis has also died (as a result of being hit by a Kassam - because people blown by rockets obviously don't get killed, they only die), I knew why I had taken this course of action. That said, CNN wasn't much better, but at least they pretended to care what the Israelis were thinking.

I very stupidly let my defenses slip last night whilst watching Channel 4's particularly mendacious programme named "Unseen Gaza". This vicious documentary was basically an excuse for journalists who had been kept out of Gaza during the war, to get their own back on Israel, by showing the precise reasons for Israel's decision to keep them out in the first place.

What was presented was a one-sided view of the conflict, with not even a nod to providing balance. Whilst watching it (I turned off three quarters of the way through as I'd just about had enough), I wondered if Jon Snow and his trusted interviewee the BBC's Jeremy Bowen (which pretty much gives you an idea of the kind of balance you could expect) had been recruited by Hamas to produce this piece of propaganda, in order to inflate their not too thin wallets.

I knew what was going on, because I'm savvy enough to see the British broadcasting media at its cynical excellence, using every cheap emotional trick to bash Israel. What however bothered me was that most British people watching this would only use it as an excuse to continue harbouring negative thoughts towards both Israel and the Jews.

With anti-Semitism at its peak in the UK, this programme did nothing to address the serious concern that people are using the media as a tool to get their information - and as a result, let rip at the beleaguered Jewish community.

I know because I see the results of programmes such as this in my school. I see the kids walking with Kefiyahs wrapped defiantly around their shoulders, as if to say "look, today I am a poor Palestinian" - totally oblivious to why the whole conflict happened in the first place.

Channel 4 as a so called "responsible" purveyor of information has a duty to remind itself that people hang on to its every word as form their ideas a result of what they see. The next time a fellow Jew is attacked in the street for "what is going on Gaza", I hope that Jon Snow and his ilk are rushed over to the emergency room to see how their "professionalism" is impacting on people like me.

1 comment:

Bradley said...

And to make things worse, Channel 4 is on the brink of becoming a Public Service Broadcaster - so we could easily end up with 2 anti-Israel channels!

The situation is crying out for people within C4 and BBC to produce reflections such as 'Unseen Israel'.

I've heard the question so many times over the last couple of months that "why are there so many Jews in PR, yet Israeli PR is so poor?"