Last year the BBC gave wide – albeit meticulously airbrushed – coverage to the ‘Fatah Day’ rally held in the Gaza Strip. This year, however, the annual events marking the anniversary of Fatah’s first terror attack against Israel have so far been ignored.
In addition to controlling the Palestinian Authority, Fatah is also of course the largest faction in the PLO which is currently conducting talks with Israel, supposedly with the aim of bringing the Arab-Israeli conflict to a peaceful resolution.
The BBC News website offers its visitors several profiles of Fatah. In both this one from 2009 and this one from 2011, readers are informed that:
“With international pressure mounting, Fatah – though notably not the al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades – signed a declaration rejecting attacks on civilians in Israel and committing themselves to peace and co-existence.”
So let’s take a quick look at how an organisation committed – according to the BBC – to “peace and co-existence” with its Israeli neighbours celebrated ‘Fatah Day’ this year, as the US Secretary of State arrived in the region once more and talks continue.
These two photographs were taken at a Fatah rally held on January 1st in Deheishe near Bethlehem by Channel 10’s Roy Sharon.
The image below appeared on Fatah’s Facebook page, together with the logo also pictured.
Notably, that “peace and co-existence” touted by the BBC is reflected neither in the stylised map which erases Israel completely or the gun barrel (for more information on Fatah logos, see here). Rifles also featured in an image chosen by PLO chief negotiator Saeb Erekat for his Facebook page on December 29th 2013.
And during his speech given at the official ‘Fatah Day’ event in Ramallah, PA president and head of Fatah Mahmoud Abbas took a leaf out of Ahmadinejad’s handbook, calling Israeli communities in Judea & Samaria and Jerusalem neighbourhoods “cancer”.
BBC audiences aspiring to “build a global understanding of international issues” such as the ongoing talks and the Middle East peace process in general would no doubt find the information above very useful. The BBC, however, is staying silent.