Daily Archives: January 25, 2009

Gideon Rachman

The BBC are under attack for refusing to broadcast a charity appeal for people made homeless in Gaza. The Observer newspaper claims that the BBC has been thrown into crisis by the decision. Jon Snow, a veteran broadcaster, calls the decision “ludicrous”. Douglas Alexander, a government minister, has called upon the BBC to re-consider. Tim Llwellyn, a former BBC correspondent, accuses his former employer of “cowardice”.

But I think the BBC are right. Broadcasting a charity appeal for Gaza at this particular moment would compromise the corporation’s impartiality. This is not a disaster caused by a tsuanami or an earthquake. It is not an Act of God. It is the product of a highly controversial war – and for the BBC to broadcast appeals for humanitarian relief for Palestinian victims would inevitably be seen as a political act. Read more