What is “dangerous and alarming” to the BBC – and what is not

Here is a BBC News website article from December 17th entitled “Israel approves East Jerusalem settlement plans” which opens with the statement: 

“The Israeli authorities have approved plans to build 1,500 more homes at a Jewish settlement in East Jerusalem.”

The article actually relates to preliminary planning permission having been granted by the District Planning Commission for the potential construction of 1,500 new housing units in the existing Ramat Shlomo neighbourhood – some 21 minutes’ drive from Jerusalem city centre – which, under any possible scenario, would remain under Israeli control.

Ramat Shlomo

The BBC saw fit to quote Saeb Erekat of the Palestinian Authority: [emphasis added]

” “We condemn in the strongest possible terms these Israeli actions and the determination of Israel to continue expanding settlements and in the process undermining the two-state solution,” chief negotiator Saeb Erekat told the Reuters news agency.

These are very dangerous and alarming steps. The Israeli government is showing its determination to contravene the will of the international community,” he added.”

Interestingly, the BBC did not see fit to inform its audiences at all about another development in the region which took place a couple of days beforehand. 

“Youngsters who identify themselves with the Hamas, Islamic Jihad and Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine terrorist organizations have joined forced with supporters of Fatah, according to a video uploaded to the Internet Friday, in order to fight against Israel.

“This is the beginning of the third Palestinian intifada, which erupts from the heart of Hebron and spreads to all of Palestine,” they said.”

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=OU8CRBtyVcM]

Average British viewers might consider that and other related news currently coming out of PA-controlled areas to be more likely to “undermine the two-state solution” than the granting of preliminary planning permission. But of course if they get their news solely from the BBC, they will only know about the “very dangerous and alarming” things done by District Planning Committees. 

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