Jane Corbin was in super-superficial mode in last night’s programme Kill the Christians.
Corbin’s thrust appeared to be that the Christians are being persecuted and murdered by Islamic State, alongside the wrong kind of Muslims whom I.S. lunatics are presently slaughtering in droves. It made copious use of ‘old’ footage of Islamic State parading its victims, pre-beheading, in their orange jumpsuits.
The programme espoused the increasingly prevalent theory that Islamic countries were, after all, better off under the stabilising influence of tyrannical despotic leaders like Saddam and Assad. This is a distinctly credible theory, but as far as the current crisis concerning Christians in the Middle East is concerned it’s a distraction.
Jane Corbin was filmed striding hither and thither on mountain paths. She and her replenished hair were standing a mere stone’s throw from an Islamic State stronghold, she announced, pointing to smoke plumes billowing in the distance.
Corbin visited beleaguered Christians sheltering in monasteries and spoke to Christian priests. All the while one of Corbin’s gravity-defying scarves was draped over her shoulders; never out of place, in sharp symbolic contrast to the displaced Christian families stripped of their churches, homes and livelihoods whose tales she was recounting.
I don’t claim to be an expert on the topic of the persecution of Christians in the Middle East, but it was my understanding that this process began long before the comparatively recent rise of the IS.
Canon Andrew White, aka The Vicar of Baghdad, was conspicuous by his absence in this programme. He is the real expert on the exodus of Christians from Iraq, and he has long been trying to tell the world of their plight. Corbin didn’t even mention his name.
Another glaring flaw in this hour-long un-investigative piece of journalism was the Bethlehem section. I didn’t hear Corbin explain that Bethlehem is run by the PA, or that the persecution of Christians is not really the fault of the IP conflict - it’s my understanding that it’s more a case of the Muslim Palestinians‘ long standing antipathy to Christians or any religious group that differs from their own. Corbin’s narrative gave the opposite impression. So what’s the truth?
I’d better leave that matter to the specialists, and I hope BBC Watch will elucidate in due course, but if Corbin intended to imply that Israel was guilty of something here, she was treading on dangerous ground. Remember Sarah Montague and Baroness Warsi?
Jane Corbin was off form this time. Her hair seems to have purloined all her mojo; but is she worth it?
Update: BBC Watch
Update: BBC Watch