Stand up against BBC's support for US war propaganda on Iran
By Abbas Edalat, Campaign Iran
As the US is deploying a massive armada in the Persian Gulf to threaten
Iran, the BBC ‘s top in-depth news
programme has supported the totally unfounded US propaganda against the five
employees of the Iranian consulate in Arbil arrested after the US forces raid
On Wednesday 17th January, in BBC 2’s Newsnight, Mark
Urban, the BBC’s senior political
commentator, while speaking to Jeremy Paxman, UK’s top news presenter, referred
to the Iranians arrested in the US raid on the Iranian consulate in Arbil last
week as "hard line elements in the revolutionary guards" who "allegedly steer up
the trouble" in Iraq.
It is only the US government which has accused the staff at the
Iranian consulate in Arbil of being extreme elements involved in organising
attacks on US soldiers in Iraq.. No evidence for these
accusations has been provided by the US government.
immediately after the raid, the Kurdish autonomous government angrily protested
against the US action and announced that they had
invited the Iranian government to set up the place for facilitating consular
services. The Iraqi Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari has pledged to Iran that Iraq will ensure the release of five Iranians the US is holding. In an interview with the BBC, Abdel Aziz
al-Hakim, the leader of the Supreme Council for Islamic Revolution in
Iraq, one of the most
powerful Shiite figures in the country, has also condemned the US
action as violation of Iraqi sovereignty.
Nor has the US government
provided any evidence whatsoever that Iran has any thing to do with the
so-called Improvised Explosive Devices (IED), or road side bombs, which have
killed US and UK soldiers in Iraq in the past 18 months. Initially, in June
2005, General John Vines, the senior US commander in Iraq,
stated that the IED’s were probably produced by the specialists of the ex-Iraqi
regime, an assertion which was also made by a
Pentagon official. Some six weeks later though, without providing any evidence,
the US conveniently accused
Iran of involvement in the production
and of the road side bombs.
The British government in early October 2005 made a similar
accusation which implicated Iran but three months later early in January
2006, the propaganda was dropped and the Independent reported that the
UK government has privately admitted
they have no evidence for their accusation.
Mark Urban did not report on
these facts. Instead, by referring to the arrested Iranians as hard line
elements of the revolutionary guards, he blatantly supported the completely
unfounded US accusation
against the arrested Iranians and has thus aided the US propaganda against Iran. Later,
Paxman also conceded to the US accusation and referred to the
arrested Iranians as “so-called diplomats".
At the time that the
US is whipping up hysteria
against Iran and is
mobilizing a huge fire power in place in the Persian Gulf, such clearly biased
views by Urban and Paxman in support of US accusations against Iran is
a serious breach of BBC's code of practice for fair reporting.
Given the reputation of the BBC in many parts of the world for balanced
reporting, it is imperative for all peace loving people to stand up against the
BBC’s pro US bias in
reporting the events in Iraq by complaining to
the BBC. We demand that BBC’s Newsnight
provide a chance for the truth to be told by allowing the British public and the
international community to hear campaigners who are working to expose the
malicious war propaganda of the US. Otherwise, with its present
coverage of the events, the BBC will remain complicit in paving the public
opinion for a US war of
aggression on Iran.
... Payvand News - 1/19/07 ... --