January 09, 2011

Six of one half a dozen of the other

Channel 4 has been showing some people from Jewish and Muslim backgrounds talking about their take on the State of Israel's relations with the Palestinians.

The overall context is somewhat mystified by the ridiculous title, Can Jews and Muslims ever find peace?. But it's not too bad. There appears to be equal weight given to zionist and anti-zionist opinions.

So what is the Jewish Chronicle's beef about a "biased Mideast film"?
Last week, seven 90-second films entitled Can Jews and Muslims ever find peace? aired as part of the 4Thought series. It is broadcast every day on Channel 4 in the evening and is also covered on the Channel 4's website.

The episodes included clips from Christian student and "friend of Israel" Sam Hailes, Muslim musician Kareem Dennis, and Roberta Moore, head of the English Defence League's Jewish division.

Other participants were Muslim interfaith worker Suna Umair, Israeli Jew Yael Kahn, Jewish performance artist Danny Raphael, and Muslim convert Paul Salahuddin Armstrong.
Ok, from what I have seen this is a fairly accurate description. I know, that's surprising for the Jewish Chronicle. But what's this?
Channel 4 has received six complaints in total, three claiming the programmes were pro-Palestinian and the rest accusing them of being pro-Israel.
Ok, so views have been presented for and against the State of Israel and complaints are also running at fifty-fifty, albeit on a low turnout. So what's this got to do with the Community Security Trust and the Board of Deputies?
Mark Gardner, of the Community Security Trust, said: "It is appalling that Channel 4 would broadcast these highly provocative views over more representative and less extreme views."

Jon Benjamin, chief executive of the Board of Deputies, said: "This programme has a fantastic opportunity to inform and educate the public on a wide variety of issues, and one would expect Channel 4 to ensure that they offer balanced debate instead of skewed narrative."
In the film views are presented this way and that way in equal measure. Complaints too are running at fifty-fifty. That's "skewed"? Sometimes I think zionists don't like equality.

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