BBC News fails to tell all on antisemitism in Leeds

On February 9th the BBC News website published an uncredited report on its ‘Leeds & West Yorkshire’ page under the headline ‘Leeds University hate crime inquiry over graffiti on Jewish building’.

The caption to the photograph illustrating that report tells BBC audiences that “vandals” had “targeted Hillel House at the University of Leeds” and the report opens as follows:

“Police have launched a hate crime inquiry after “Free Palestine” graffiti appeared on a building for Jewish students at the University of Leeds.

The graffiti at Hillel House was reported just after 07:00 GMT on Friday, West Yorkshire Police said.

The Union of Jewish Students said it was “heartbroken and angry” at the vandalism, while the university said it was supporting the investigation.”

However, as reported by the Daily Mail on the same day, that graffiti incident (which the BBC did not report also included another slogan: “IDF off campus”) was not the only thing to have happened at Leeds University:

“A Chaplain at Leeds University was forced into hiding with his young family yesterday after receiving death threats over his role as an IDF reservist.

Rabbi Zecharia Deutsch, wife Nava and their two children were moved to a safe location on police advice amid a shocking hate campaign.

Pro-Palestinian campaigners have accused Rabbi Deutsch of ‘genocide’ after he returned to Israel after Hamas’s October 7 terror attacks to serve in the Israeli Defence Force.

He resumed his chaplaincy duties last month, leading to an escalation in anti-Semitic threats on campus.

On Thursday evening, the hate campaign intensified with ‘hundreds’ of malicious calls to the family, including threats to kill Rabbi Deutsch, to rape and kill Mrs Deutsch and to murder their children.”

The BBC News website only got round to covering that part of the story on February 13th in a report titled “University security stepped up after threats to rabbi”.

“Security has been stepped up at the University of Leeds after its Jewish chaplain was threatened and “Free Palestine” graffiti was daubed on a building for Jewish students.

Rabbi Zecharia Deutsch, from the University Jewish Chaplaincy, had “received threats to his safety and that of his family”, the university said.

The threats to Rabbi Deutsch and the graffiti on Hillel House were both reported to the police on the morning of 9 February.”

The BBC’s report does not however clarify that the Deutch family had to move to a safe location on police advice. Neither does either of the BBC’s reports inform its funding public which organisations were behind the protests at Leeds University, including one on February 9th.

As reported by the Jewish Chronicle:

“On Friday, a “No War Criminals On Campus” protest was set to be held outside the Marjorie and Arnold Ziff building against the rabbi and his wife.

The Leeds Palestine Solidarity Campaign called for the protest, which was also encouraged by The Muslim Association of Britain and the Muslim news blog 5 Pillars.”

The Times of Israel noted that:

“On Friday, students at Leeds University staged a protest in the city calling for Deutsch’s dismissal, which the Daily Mail reported was organized by the Palestine Solidarity Campaign and Socialist Worker Student Society. A similar protest was held on campus in November.

The Friday protest came after the campaign against Deutsch was picked up by the Muslim Association of Britain, a self-described “grassroots” organization shown by the London-based Jewish Chronicle to have ties to Hamas, which called the rabbi a “war criminal complicit in genocide.””

With protests continuing on the Leeds University campus and additional incidents having taken place, it is clearly high time for BBC Yorkshire to start reporting this story in full, which of course includes informing its audiences of the names of the groups behind the actions so that they can understand the ‘who’ and ‘why’ parts of the story.

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1 Comment

  1. says: Grimey

    For how much longer is the UK government going to allow Muslim gangs to attack Jewish targets in this country ? It is high time that so-called “protesters”, who commit violence and abuse of racism laws, were all arrested and jailed – before their illegal actions become the norm in our society.

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