A Palestinian voice you won’t hear on the BBC

As has often been noted on these pages, the BBC’s reporting on Palestinian issues is by and large a very one-dimensional affair, with stories generally making the news only when there is some sort of connection to Israel. Audiences are very rarely informed about domestic Palestinian issues – either political or social – and topics such as freedom of the press or persecution of religious minorities are no-go areas for BBC reporters. Whilst audiences have plenty of opportunity to hear messaging from officials such as Saeb Erekat, Husam Zomlot and Mustafa Barghouti, the ordinary person in the street is rarely given a platform, except in cases when selected quotes are employed to provide backing for a particular narrative.

Palestinian human rights activist Bassam Eid recently published an opinion piece at the Times of Israel and it is well worth the read, not least because it highlights a viewpoint which BBC audiences never get to hear.

“Let’s be realistic. We Palestinians are not doing well.

In Gaza, our schools are controlled by Muslim fanatics who indoctrinate our children, and Hamas uses our civilians as human shields in a losing battle against Israel. Hamas maintains power through violence, and it ensures that money is spent on its arsenal rather than on making the Palestinians’ lives better. While President Abbas is quick to denounce Israel whenever it attacks Hamas, he has absolutely no ability to stop Hamas from provoking Israel.

In the West Bank, while Abbas has been incapable of stopping the construction of Israeli settlements, the only good jobs are with Israeli companies, and the BDS (Boycott, Sanctions, and Divestment) movement is doing its best to take those jobs away from us. Abbas runs a corrupt dictatorship that uses international funds to consolidate its own administration rather than to develop the Palestinian economy.

In East Jerusalem, the PA is so mistrusted that most Palestinians would prefer to live under Israeli rule than under PA rule, and yet some of us seem unable to live in peace with the Jews.

In Palestinian camps in Arab countries, our human rights are constantly being violated, and we are simply used by our Arab hosts to further their own goals.”

Read the whole article here.



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