October 27, 2013

BBC Trust promotes then demotes (almost) the Working Definition of Antisemitism

I noticed this a long time ago on the Engage website.  Someone made a complaint to the BBC Trust about something about the Lib Dem MP, David Ward.  It doesn't really matter what it was but it became a part of the drip-drip way in which zionists are trying to have their bogus so-called Working Definition of Antisemitism gaining general acceptance.

Here's a part of the BBC Trust's ruling as per the Engage post:
The Committee noted also the European Union’s working definition of anti-Semitism, which states that “holding Jews collectively responsible for actions of the state of Israel” was a manifestation of anti-Semitism. [emphasis added]
Well I wasn't having that so I wrote to the BBC Trust as follows:
Dear Sir/Madam

I have just read the above complaint and the complaint and the decision contain an error of fact relating to what they both refer to as "the EU's working definition of anti-Semitism".

The European Union does not have a working or any other definition of antisemitism.  The Editorial Standards Committee appears to have assumed that the "working definition of ant-Semitism" is the EU's simply because the complainant said it is.

The problem here is that the so-called "working definition" has other elements that are at best controversial and appear to be designed to insulate The State of Israel from criticism.

I have no objection to the rest of the content of the decision but it accords to the "working definition" a formal status which it does not have.

In light of the above I think you should correct the decision and rely on standard definitions of racism in general rather than this special definition of antisemitism in particular.

I should also be grateful if you could direct me to the source the Committee used to peruse the "working definition of anti-Semitism" if indeed it was not simply the complainant's own assertion.

Many thanks,

Yours faithfully


Mark Elf
 Eventually I got a reply and here's an extract:
In light of your comments and our subsequent enquiries into this matter we propose to amend the published decision to make it clearer that the Committee noted an assertion put forward by the complainant.

By way of background, the so-called “working definition of anti-semitism” referred to in the finding and cited by the complainant was published on the website of the EU Monitoring Committee for Racism and Xenophobia in 2005. This body was replaced by the EU Agency for Fundamental Rights (the FRA) in 2007. A press officer at the FRA has explained that this was a discussion paper and was never adopted by the EU as a working definition, although it has been on the FRA website until recently when it was removed during a clear out of “non-official” documents. The link to the FRA site provided by the complainant in his appeal no longer works.
....
We propose to make the following amendment to the finding (changes shown in red):

The Committee noted also the complainant’s argument that the European Union’s working definition of anti-Semitism, which states that “holding Jews collectively responsible for actions of the state of Israel” was a manifestation of anti-Semitism.

We will add the following footnote to this amendment:

The Committee further notes, however, that the definition relied upon by the complainant, which was previously available on the website of the EU Monitoring Committee for Racism and Xenophobia, has recently been removed by its successor, the EU Agency for Fundamental Rights.

So the BBC Trust appears to have relied on the mere assertion of the complainant that the EU had a working definition of antisemitism which it didn't.  Not only that, it's amendment to the original ruling doesn't really clarify the position.  It does not make clear to the general public that the EU doesn't have a working definition of antisemitism, simply that it doesn't host it on its website anymore.

I did press them to further clarify the position on the website but they refused.  Ah well, little acorns....

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