Friday 20 October 2017

Even handed

I don’t know if I omitted the link to Karen Harradine’s piece about UNESCO in The Conservative Woman, but here it is.

Once again, if you haven’t already done so I urge you to read it. And here’s another good’un by Rod Liddle (£) more or less on the same topic, with a little more info on UNESCO’s outgoing director Irina Bokova. He speaks for many of us. (i.e., me)

A few days ago I wondered about something I heard Nick Robinson saying, which seemed dubious to me. Was I imagining it?  Craig gave him the benefit of the doubt, so I left it. Don’t wanna be too OTT with the paranoia, do we, nit pickers?

However, it concerns Ms. Bokova so I’ll stick it in here just for the hell of it:

“Did anyone hear Nick Robinson talking to the outgoing director general of Unesco, Irina Bokova?
He said to her:
"You use language for protecting a site in east Jerusalem which everybody knows - even (in) the BBC knows - that’s used by Palestinians and not used by Israelis, and therefore is designed to offend"
In other words, obviously the BBC is sympathetic to UNESCO’s relentless campaigning against Israel, but nevertheless “even the BBC knows" that referring to the Western Wall and Temple Mount only by their Muslim names will not go down too well. 
It might be Nick’s way of saying the ‘value-judgement-free’ BBC is conscious of its obligation to  appear even-handed over matters concerning Israel and the Palestinians, so when UNESCO decides to declare another “Palestinian” world heritage site it should choose its words more carefully.
Or, it might have been Nick inadvertently letting the BBC’s default anti-Israel agenda (a value judgement) slip out. It’s just that little word: “even” that gives the game away. In my humble opinion. 

Feel free to disagree.


  1. Well observed. I'd have missed it instead picking up on "everybody knows".

  2. In related news, the good old UN has made Robert Mugabe a "good will ambassador" for the WHO. Giving the UNESCO shenanigans and the appointment of Saudi Arabia to the UN's women's rights commission, something is clearly very rotten in the state of the United Nations.

  3. In other news here's what Anthony Zurcher (the BBC's Senior North American Reporter - love all those titles they give their manifold US-based journos) wrote, with ill disguised glee about Trump's alleged "insensitivity" regarding a call to a military widow...
    And here's what the widow says:

    So...yet more Fake News from the BBC? Where's the prominent correction?

    [See on Biased BBC]

    1. Thanks for pointing that out. It's well worth a post.

    2. Digging further MB, it looks as if the fake news is coming from the other direction this time. (Trumpbots?) It's a fake Facebook page, not a real post by Mrs Johnson. Someone somewhere (Trumpbots?) went to the trouble to create it and others (obviously wanting it to be true) have helped spread it like wildfire. I suspect BBC Trending will be doing a piece on it soon.

  4. We can't read Rod Liddle unless we subscribe to The Spectator. So what did he have to say about the UN woman?

    1. As Sue's away (and just between us)....

      And yet for all that, Trump has suddenly done at least one thing right. He has withdrawn his country from the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (Unesco), citing — rightly — anti–Israel bias. He is not the first American president to do so: Reagan pulled out in 1984. Oddly enough it was George W. Bush who in 2002 took the USA back in, and Barack Obama who later withdrew funding, again on account of its patently pro-Hamas agenda.

      The sooner we pull out, the better, even if our contributions to the organisation are, comparatively, chicken feed: £14 million at the latest count out of an overall budget of about £300 million. The public may know of Unesco for its championing of heritage sites across the world, but in truth it is the provisional wing of the United Nations, pursuing an anti-western, anti-capitalist, anti-Israeli agenda which lays the blame for third-world poverty entirely at the feet of the old colonial powers (yes even for the poverty in those third-world countries which were never colonised and are today even worse off than the ones which were). Its primary aim is to foist the countries of our planet with a ‘World Core Curriculum’, designed to inculcate a left-liberal mindset upon -people who do not remotely want it.

      It will come as no surprise to you to learn that this bien-pensant beanfeast is led by a politician who was trained by the KGB and was once a proud member of Todor -Zhivkov’s magnificently unpleasant Bulgarian communist party, later renamed the Bulgarian socialist party, with its exciting history of violent purges, dictatorship, censorship, imprisonment, show trials and slavish devotion to Moscow. Irina Bokova is also notable for being a champion of Azerbaijan, that bastion of democracy, and once hosted a photo exhibition entitled: ‘Azerbaijan — Land of Tolerance!’ just as 90 Azerbaijani journalists were being banged up for writing stuff the government didn’t like.

      The vice president of Azerbaijan (she’s also the first lady of that benighted country) was also handed Unesco’s highest award — the Mozart Medal — by Bokova. When you learn that a chap called Kalin Mitrev has apparently received almost half a million euros from an Azerbaijani equity company, you may begin wondering if there might be something a bit whiffy about these baubles and that exhibition. You don’t know Kalin? Oh come on, keep up. Kalin is Irina’s hubby, who now works for the European Bank of Reconstruction and Development. She denies knowing anything about the payments and he says they’re completely above board, being payment for services rendered by him in a private capacity before he joined the EBRD.

      Even if we should give Irina and Kalin the benefit of any doubt, Unesco is not worth a single penny of UK money. With every year that passes, it seeks to advance its agenda by sticking the boot into Israel and recognising Palestinian sovereignty. I can’t think of a better way to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Balfour Declaration — coming up next month — than by leaving Unesco entirely and stating our unequivocal support for the Middle East’s only democratic government, which, for all its undoubted faults, is a far more deserving recipient of the UK’s support and largesse than some super-annuated third sector satrapy led by a former commie with a rich husband.

  5. Wow. Very informative. Thank you very much Craig. I was just hoping for a sentence or two.

    Off topic
    Bumper night for music on Radio 3. Dizzy Gillespie featuring in two 100th anniversary programmes and Otello from a Covent Garden production this summer, coming up at 6 30pm.


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