Monday, January 10, 2005

THE BBC -- STILL THE BIASED BROADCASTING CORPORATION

Since you have to register to read it, I've included in its entirety a piece in today's Telegraph about the BBC's non-reporting of US aid to tsunami victims:

'Don't mention the navy' is the BBC's line

Last week we were subjected to one of the most extraordinary examples of one-sided news management of modern times, as most of our media, led by the BBC, studiously ignored what was by far the most effective and dramatic response to Asia's tsunami disaster. A mighty task force of more than 20 US Navy ships, led by a vast nuclear-powered aircraft carrier, the Abraham Lincoln, and equipped with nearly 90 helicopters, landing craft and hovercraft, were carrying out a round-the-clock relief operation, providing food, water and medical supplies to hundreds of thousands of survivors.

The BBC went out of its way not to report this. Only when one BBC reporter, Ben Brown, hitched a lift from one of the Abraham Lincoln's Sea Hawk helicopters to report from the Sumatran coast was there the faintest hint of the part that the Americans, aided by the Australian navy, were playing.

Instead the BBC's coverage was dominated by the self-important vapourings of a stream of politicians, led by the UN's Kofi Annan; the EU's "three-minute silence"; the public's amazing response to fund-raising appeals; and a Unicef-inspired scare story about orphaned children being targeted by sex traffickers. The overall effect was to turn the whole drama into a heart-tugging soap opera.

The real story of the week should thus have been the startling contrast between the impotence of the international organisations, the UN and the EU, and the remarkable efficiency of the US and Australian military on the ground. Here and there, news organisations have tried to report this, such as the Frankfurter Allgemeine in Germany, and even the China News Agency, not to mention various weblogs, such as the wonderfully outspoken
Diplomad, run undercover by members of the US State Department, and our own www.eureferendum.blogspot.com. But when even Communist China's news agency tells us more about what is really going on than the BBC, we see just how strange the world has become.

One real lesson of this disaster, as of others before, is that all the international aid in the world is worthless unless one has the hardware and organisational know-how to deliver it. That is what the US and Australia have been showing, as the UN and the EU are powerless to do. But because, to the BBC, it is a case of "UN and EU good, US and military bad", the story is suppressed. The BBC's performance has become a national scandal.

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