Thursday, January 12, 2006

The Small Sacrifice of Truth

The sanitisation and idealisation of the religion of Islam proceeds apace at the Beeb. It must- as this culture is being more and more forcefully advocated by its adherents, so it requires greater and greater efforts to retain management of the news in a way that the Beeb feels is responsible.

After writing this post originally, I heard of the terrible stampede at this year's Hajj. I am naturally sorry for the people involved, but it only really highlights the terrible realities that the BBC is ignoring in the general course of things.

Lets look at what that means. No mention on the BBC of the appalling carnage of this incident of slaughter and sadistic chaos. Reuters filed this under 'oddly enough' when I think 'sadly predictable' would have been more accurate. Also no mention of this incident (on European soil too), where some modern day reality came into contact with medievalism. This is not any cull we're talking about, such as fox-hunting facilitates, but sacrifice- blood for some mystical quality of blood's sake.

Instead, from the BBC we had a picture sequence of a mass-slaughter fair which doesn't even include any notion of during or after the slaughter. I am not sure 'livestock fair' was the appropriate term to use to describe it, myself. No wonder the animal rights people in the UK are naive, when their Auntie shields them from the big wide world.

As the Wall Street Journal recently observed: 'Political correctness, for all its awfulness, is an effort to save souls through language.' But not animals, obviously, lest the Islamic audience be offended.

Second example: the Hajj. The BBC's coverage is, save the unavoidable reporting of the annual Islamic Hillsborough-style event which is a tradition for this time of the year, utterly nicey-nicey (this sentence written pre-stampede btw). The boy scout article I linked earlier is a good example, but the BBC are pleased to report organisational glitches, safety measures etc..

Yet what about these Iranians in Mecca? Not so nicey-nicey, eh? Somehow the BBC manage to make a sacrifice and omit the death to America, infidel-hand chopping rhetoric from their coverage.

I am not saying that what I'm outlining is not a dilemma for broadcasters, but what I am saying is that the BBC's chosen output is not news, but cultural sensitivity, aka pandering. The fact that they have decided a priori on ideological grounds that Muslims are to be protected from criticism is their problem.

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