Saturday, October 28, 2006

BBC bias

Many people in Britin do not think that the BBC is biased. I came across this piece from the Guardian of all places.

BBC man criticises 'war bias'

Jason Deans
Wednesday March 26, 2003

The BBC's coverage of the war has come under fire from one of its own correspondents in the Gulf who has fired off a furious memo claiming the corporation is misleading viewers about the conflict in Iraq.
Paul Adams, the BBC's defence correspondent who is based at the coalition command centre in Qatar, complained that the corporation was conveying a untruthful picture of how the war was progressing.

Adams accused the BBC's coverage of exaggerating the military impact of casualties suffered by UK forces and downplaying their achievements on the battlefield during the first few days of the conflict.

"I was gobsmacked to hear, in a set of headlines today, that the coalition was suffering 'significant casualties'. This is simply not true," Adams said in the memo.

"Nor is it true to say - as the same intro stated - that coalition forces are fighting 'guerrillas'. It may be guerrilla warfare, but they are not guerrillas," he stormed.

"Who dreamed up the line that the coalition are achieving 'small victories at a very high price?' The truth is exactly the opposite. The gains are huge and costs still relatively low. This is real warfare, however one-sided, and losses are to be expected," Adams continued.

The memo, which has been leaked to the Sun newspaper, was sent to BBC executives including the head of TV news programmes, Roger Mosey, and his radio counterpart, Stephen Mitchell.

The BBC has come under attack for describing the loss of two soldiers as the "worst possible news for the armed forces".

Labour MP Alice Mahon has also complained that the BBC is too pro-war and is not showing enough of the casualties inflicted on the Iraqis or the problems with humanitarian aid.

Earlier this week the BBC was forced to promise that it would no longer show footage of seriously injured British troops, after the mother of a Royal Marine watched her son set on fire during a gun battle on a BBC early evening bulletin.

A BBC spokeswoman said the corporation could not confirm the contents of what was an internal memo.

But she added that the BBC was not the only news organisation highlighting British casualties.

"This is an immensely complicated and difficult story and the big challenge for the BBC, as for other broadcasters, is getting the balance right. We are constantly monitoring the language and tone of reports to achieve this balance," the spokeswoman said.

"We think we get it right most of the time, but we know we don't always. This seems to have been an internal memo and we can't confirm its content, but this is the kind of debate about editorial tone that's going on in newsrooms all over the world about this particular story."

I know it's old news, but this even before things started to go wrong in Iraq.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

The BBC is probably the equivalent of CBS and CNN in the US. The other media outlets, the New York times, etc. are probably up there as well.

You may have heard that CNN showed video shot by terrorist of sniper killing an American soldier.

This is tantamount to running film from Goebbels on the 'Movietime News' during World War II.

The media now considers itself 'above the fray', not to favor one side or another, taking equally as important and honest when looking at Western forces and radical Islam. They forget that if the enemy wins, they would be the first to be killed.

What must happen before this changes? I think America must suffer a tremendous loss (think nuclear bomb) before the left actually thinks that America isn't so bad after all.

BTW, I read that the Dutch are now a bit more concerned about the 1 million Moslems in their country who consider themselves Moslems, and have no allegiance to the Netherlands at all.

If that doesn't happen, and the Republicans lose big in the midterm elections next week, no president will risk a fight for decades. We will make peace with whomever and whatever, because our enemy has figured out that if you drag out a war, Americans will clamor to go home with their tail between their legs.

(One must admit that letting the media define you is fatal. Bush, for some reason, has allowed that to happen. It is illustriative to remember that during the Civil War, Abraham Lincoln faced certain defeat by Democrat McClennan. Sherman saved his presidency by taking Atlanta.

American likes to win, and will take its marbles and go home if victory isn't quick.)