The BBC's Charter and its Producers Guidelines state:
...'Due impartiality lies at the heart of the BBC. All programs and services should be open minded, fair and show a respect for truth? [BBC reports should] contain comprehensive, authoritative and impartial coverage of news and current affairs in the United Kingdom and throughout the world??
It was interesting to contrast the BBC and ITN attitude to the ISIS activities in Iraq during the news programmes last evening (13th June).
As there was some sporting event on BBC the two 10 o'clock news broadcasts were ten minutes apart starting.
The ITN description was of a Sunni uprising against a hated Shia government. It showed, among other things, ISIS fighters repairing damaged electricity cables, and said that ISIS was basically welcomed by the local population as the region was almost entirely Sunni.
The BBC description emphasised the concept that Jihadists had invaded northern Iraq, bent on the overthrow of the legitimate government. The message became somewhat hard to follow as the BBC emphasised that the Iraqi army had simply run away when the Jihadists arrived, but then showed large groups of young men who, it claimed, were joining the Iraqi army in unprecedented numbers, and then a group of camouflaged men who were described as "Shia militants.
All I can deduce from these two different depictions is that there is a full-blown sectarian struggle going on (virtually a civil war) and that the BBC has decided that it is on the Shia side.
Thinking about it, it appears that the BBC is going to find themselves between a rock and a hard place. With Sunnis comprising the majority of world's Muslims, with only 10-15% Shia, we shall see over the course of time what the BBC decides is in its best interests. Whatever they report, it will never be from the perspective of our values and qualities. But sure as eggs are eggs, they are going to be ruffling feathers among their 'peace loving' Islamic friends.
At present, the BBC is only answerable to itself in deciding its standards and coverage. How does it measure up to what you consider good quality, and impartial and unbiased reporting as required by its charter? All TV viewers in the UK are forced by law to pay for this 'service'. Do you believe that what is received truly 'serves' the society, - or merely increases the problems within it?
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