|BBC's Kim Ghattas
And familiar old feelings are being aroused.
In choosing to present both sides of the frightening events of the past 36 hours, BBC's voice from Beirut happens to be that of Kim Ghattas (pictured), a born-in-Lebanon Lebanese who speaks English smoothly and is never identified as partisan or even (in our experience) Lebanese. The BBC's choice of academic expert is a Lebanese man based in Washington DC with a very Lebanese viewpoint. And the message from both (paraphrased by us) is: it's those belligerent Israelis all over again, and until civilized and cultured forces from outside step in, the bloodshed will continue.
We're now into the second half-hour of this hour-long bulletin, and while there's not a single word - not one word, not one image - so far about what's being done to Israeli towns all over the Galilee, there is a diplomatic analysis, courtesy of Syria's ambassador to the UN. (Yes, Syria.)
The bulletin's now over. They're into the economic news. Not one word on how tiny Israel, smaller than the state of New Jersey, surrounded by the sea on one side, by a Hamas state on two sides and a Hezbollah state on the fourth, is under unprovoked intense fire today from three out of four directions, with the fire landing right in the heart of major centers of population.
Not one word about how Israeli forces, more powerful by orders of magnitude, could turn its enemies and their towns and cities to rubble in a 24-hour concerted effort - but don't. Or to put it another way: if all the weaponry in this region were in the hands of the Islamists and Jihadists, the result would be genocide; while if all the weaponry were in the hands of Israel, the result would be serenity.
Not one word or picture from Tsfat where a house - adjacent to Ziv Hospital - took a direct hit this morning, causing serious injuries and damage.
Not one word from Nahariya where another barrage of Katyushas crashed into the center of the city around noon, causing significant damage close to where a woman was killed a day earlier in previous barrages.
Not one word about Katyushas landing in the past two hours in a number of western Galilee locations. Not one word about missiles striking Kibbutz Kabri, Kibbutz Gesher Haziv, Kibbutz Saar and the community of Bat-Ami.
The reason we created this blog was our conviction, based on personal knowledge and the experience we have of living here close to events, that the people who work in the news media are causing real harm to the lives of innocent Israelis. Their reporting, their editorial decisions, the choice of which images and video footage are put to air and which not - all of these are fundamental to the process of how opinions are formed. We don't need the news media to think like we do, or believe what we do. It would be enough if they were able to present both sides of an argument without advocating one of them at the expense of the other in a subtle and unprofessional manner.
Experience shows that the editors of the BBC in London are not currently, and not going to be, held to any objective test of how fair, honest and accurate their work-product. (And yes, we are very familiar with the efforts made in the last year to bring them to account, with little meaningful or respectable result.) Given how pervasive their influence is, in the United States no less than in the UK, Asia, Europe and elsewhere, Israel's friends everywhere need to take an even more active role - and especially now - in challenging the way the BBC spins the narrative.
There are people hard at work inside the BBC fashioning a message that is hostile to Israel and Israeli interests. It's important for us to recognize this, and to do the things that individuals can do.