Even before the BBC’s new documentary on last summer’s war in Gaza airs, the broadcasting organization has admitted that it distorts the truth in order to make the Palestinians appear more sympathetic.
The documentary, entitled “Children of Gaza,” aims at depicting how Operation Protective Edge affected children living in and around the Gaza Strip.
The program has not yet aired, but according to the Jewish Chronicle the Palestinians’ testimonies were mistranslated in order to cover up frequent anti-Semitic comments.
The Palestinian children regularly used the word “yahud,” meaning “Jew,” when talking about their enemies. The BBC’s translators insisted on changing “Jews” to “Israelis” in order to make the Palestinians appear more tolerant.
In one instance, a child claims that “the Jews are massacring us,” which appears in the subtitles as “Israel is massacring us.”
The station’s chief international correspondent, Lyse Doucet, justified the edits by saying, “We talked to people in Gaza, we talked to translators. When [the children] say ‘Jews’, they mean ‘Israelis.’”
Despite the translators’ claims, examples of Palestinian children being taught to hate Jews collectively are well documented.
Arutz Sheva, for instance, has reported on summer camps in Gaza where children learn to glorify terrorism and repeat anti-Semitic chants that date back to centuries before the State of Israel’s founding.
Doucet’s tweets promoting “Children of Gaza” also shed light on the channel’s coverage of last year’s war. One screenshot depicts an Israeli child hiding in a bomb shelter after having only 14 seconds warning that a rocket would strike. During the war, watchdog organizations argued that the news station focused on portraying Gazans as victims and Israelis as aggressors.
Noting the recent tweets, media monitoring group BBC Watch pointed out that the station clearly had footage of Israelis having to run for shelter as their homes were being attacked, yet chose not to air it.
The BBC has long been criticized for bias in favor of Palestinians. After several high-profile instances, such as when one journalist described her tears at seeing Yassir Arafat in poor health, senior editorial advisor Malcolm Balin conducted an investigation into the station’s objectivity.
Finished in 2004, the the BBC still refuses to publicly release the Balin Report; the station even spent almost £300,000 ($460,000 US) fighting against Freedom of Information Act appeals in order to ensure that the public could not read it.