Journalists say terms like ‘massacre’ and ‘atrocity’ are used ‘only for Hamas’ across BBC platforms
A group of eight UK-based journalists employed by the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) have accused the organization of failing to provide an authentic account of the ongoing Israel-Hamas war in Gaza.
The group of journalists, in a 2,300-word letter addressed to Al Jazeeraaccused the BBC of putting more effort into humanizing the Israeli victims than the Palestinians and of leaving out important historical background from their reporting.
According Al Jazeerathe BBC is also said to be guilty of a “double standard in how civilians are seen” as it is “unwavering” in its reporting of alleged Russian war crimes in Ukraine.
The anonymous journalists do not plan to send the letter to BBC executives, believing such a move is “unlikely to lead to meaningful discussions”.
As of this writing, more than 14,500 Palestinians have lost their lives to Israeli bombardment, including at least 6,000 children.
“The BBC has failed to accurately tell this story – by omission and lack of critical engagement with Israel’s claims – and has therefore failed to help the public engage with and understand the human rights abuses unfolding in Gaza,” it says. The letter.
“Thousands of Palestinians have been killed since October 7. When will the number be high enough to change our editorial stance?”
Since October 7, human rights groups and hundreds of thousands of protesters around the world have been outraged by the growing number of Palestinian casualties in Gaza and have called for a ceasefire.
In addition, the war has also divided newsrooms worldwide, with disagreements over how each side is portrayed, the level of empathy shown to Israeli and Palestinian victims, and the use of language.
In the letter, the journalists also revealed that across the BBC’s platforms, terms such as ‘massacre’ and ‘atrocity’ have been reserved ‘only for Hamas, branding the group as the only instigator and perpetrator of violence in the region. This is inaccurate, but it is in line with the BBC’s overall coverage.’
The letter went on to read that while the Hamas attack is “abhorrent and devastating… it does not justify the indiscriminate killing of thousands of Palestinian civilians and that the BBC cannot be seen to support – or question – the logic it does”.
“We ask the BBC to think twice and defer to the documented findings of official and impartial humanitarian organisations.”
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