Friday, August 22, 2008


From yesterday's Jerusalem Post:

The IDF shut down BBC radio transmitters in Hebron on Wednesday, acting on orders of the Communications Ministry and citing interference with communications at Ben-Gurion International Airport.

The IDF Spokesman said the transmitters were illegal, adding that the Communications Ministry had found them to be jeopardizing contact between Ben-Gurion's control tower and passenger aircraft.

BBC employees had raised the issue during a press conference held by Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni on Wednesday. A government official said in response that in addition to the BBC's transmitters, a number of additional transmitters had been shut down, including some inside Israel, as they were "endangering civilian aviation, a problem we have been suffering from for a long time."

The official added that the BBC was broadcasting on a wavelength allocated to it by the Palestinian Authority without prior coordination with the Communications Ministry. "We are now trying to solve the problem," the official said.

And then there's this:

The BBC has denied charges that money raised by a BBC charity was used to recruit and train the terrorists involved in the 7/7 terror attacks on London that killed 52 people in 2005.

The BBC's own Newsnight current affairs programme reported on Tuesday night's broadcast that the BBC's Children in Need charity had donated around £20,000 to the Leeds Community School, Yorkshire, between 1999 and 2002 which went towards funding the activities of the terrorists behind the July 2005 attacks.

On Thursday the BBC said that there is no evidence that the money was used for terrorist activity.

The school funded and shared premises with the Iqra Islamic book shop where the suicide bombers Muhammad Siddique Khan and Shezhad Tanweer regularly met. Khan and Tanweer attempted to radicalize youths by showing propaganda films at the bookshop, which became a regular meeting place for young Muslims at the time - including Jermaine Lindsay, who went on to become the King's Cross bomber.

Busy little BBC.

And in the three grains of salt category, I'd like to close the week with this bit of presidential campaign pandering (or is it?) from last week. Obviously, this is a matter of grave importance to me, but the way politicians shamelessly manipulate it time and again for the consumption of gullible voters is truly mindboggling.

US Republican presidential nominee Sen. John McCain said on Friday he will promptly move the US embassy to Jerusalem from Tel Aviv if elected president. The firm pledge comes in contrast to his Democratic rival Sen. Barack Obama’s vague stance on the issue of an “undivided Jerusalem.” During an interview in which he was asked about moving the embassy, McCain said, “Right way…. I’ve been committed to that proposition for years.”

I'm sure he is. Yes. Terrific. In case you don't remember, here's the fly in that ointment, later on in the same item.

Both President George W. Bush and former president Bill Clinton also vowed to move the embassy during their initial campaigns for the White House, but both used a presidential waiver authority granted by Congress in the 1995 Embassy Relocation Act to postpone the move on national security grounds.

So I'll believe it when I see it. Who knows? McCain could be the one we've been waiting for ...

Shabbat Shalom.