The unprecedented multi-front attacks on Israelis carried out by the terrorist group Hamas on October 7th (both the Sabbath and a Jewish holiday) included thousands of missile attacks, the indiscriminate murders of tens of civilians and the wounding of hundreds of others, the bombing of an ambulance and kidnappings.
Even those ISIS-style actions did not however prompt the BBC to stray from its usual practice of portraying Palestinian terrorists as ‘militants’.
One example came in the BBC World Service radio programme ‘Weekend’ – aired some three and a half hours after the attacks began – in which the lead item was introduced by presenter Julian Worricker (from 00:26 here) as follows: [emphasis in italics in the original, emphasis in bold added]
Worricker: “So Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip have launched thousands of rockets towards Israel, setting off air-raid sirens across the country. There’ve been reports of explosions near Tel Aviv and the areas surrounding southern Gaza [sic]. One person is reported to have died. The Israeli military said that a number of Palestinian militants have infiltrated into Israel from the Gaza Strip. The BBC’s Rushdi Abualouf is in Gaza city.”
Listeners were not told that the woman killed by a direct hit from a missile was Israeli.
During that report by Rushdi Abualouf, BBC audiences around the world heard unqualified amplification of propaganda from the Hamas terrorist organisation (from 01:31).
Worricker: “What have Hamas said officially about this so far?”
Abualouf: “Well after about an hour and a half of firing, the al Qassam chief commander Mohammed Deif – he’s the overall leader of the biggest military wing in Gaza – he appeared in a television – Hamas television – and he said it’s because of Israel’s continuous aggression, he said, against the Palestinian innocent people in the West Bank and in Gaza. He mentioned the al Aqsa Mosque. It’s the third holiest place for Muslims. It’s known as Temple Mount for Jews. He said the Israelis are daily infiltrating; as he said, invading al Aqsa Mosque, beating women and children. It’s because of this, he said, we have sent messages many times to mediators that if Israel do not stop its attacks on the Palestinians, we will have to respond and he said today we have decided to put an end – as he said in his statement – put an end for Israeli continuous aggression. We decided to launch, as he said, this military operation and he said in the first twenty minutes of the operation we have launched five thousand rockets into Israel. He didn’t mention anything about ground or sea infiltration as some of the sources said but he mainly said that, like, talks and negotiations failed. He said we have been conducting many indirect negotiations and all of them are failed to stop the Israeli aggression, as he said, that why Hamas had to respond and they already started.”
Neither Worricker nor Abualouf bothered to clarify to BBC audiences around the world that the vast majority of the Palestinians killed this year were members of terrorist organisations and/or males involved in terror attacks or violence at the time. Neither were listeners told that there are limited visiting hours for non-Muslims to Temple Mount and that the number of visitors would have been larger than usual this past week because of the Succot holiday.
Worricker made no effort to challenge the unevidenced claim that Israelis are “beating women and children” or the use of inflammatory language such as “infiltrating” and “invading” which of course contributes nothing to audience understanding of events on Temple Mount. Neither did he remind his listeners that this is far from the first time that Hamas has used the topic of Temple Mount as a pretext for its attacks on Israeli civilians before Abualouf continued:
Abualouf: “As we talked, sounds of explosions and rockets being fired from Gaza. There’s been non-stop firing for almost three hours now.”
BBC World Service listeners were not informed that what Abualouf described is in fact a double war crime: the launching of missiles from populated areas in the Gaza Strip and the indiscriminate targeting of Israeli civilians.
Obviously though, the BBC World Service branch of the UK’s national broadcaster has no qualms about its worldwide promotion of the redundant propaganda of a terrorist organisation proscribed in its entirety by the British government as well as its further amplification of that propaganda on social media under the noteworthy headline “Palestine’s surprise military operation on Israel is ‘significant'”.