BBC report of Palestine hospital explosion slammed as ‘Hamas propaganda’
IDF shares images claiming to show source of hospital explosion
The BBC’s reputation is on the brink this morning after a disastrous 12 hours covering the explosion at a hospital in Palestine.
The supposedly neutral broadcaster has been accused of parroting Hamas propaganda that an Israeli rocket killed 500 Palestinians after hitting a hospital in Gaza.
Immediately after the incident, the BBC pushed out alerts informing the world: “Hundreds of people have been killed in an Israeli strike on a hospital in Gaza, according to Palestinian officials.”
One BBC reporter in Jerusalem, Jon Donnison, speculated to viewers: “It is hard to see what else this could be, really, given the size of the explosion other than an Israeli airstrike or several airstrikes.”
Over the coming hours, it became increasingly clear that Hamas’s claim was far from cut and dry, and may in fact have been caused by a malfunctioning missile fired from Gaza.
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Photographs this morning have also cast doubt on the size of the explosion, and the true number of casualties.
This morning President Biden appeared to back intelligence suggesting Israel did not fire the weapon that hit the hospital.
The BBC’s coverage is now once again under attack, with Westminster voices and fellow journalists rounding on the corporation for its irresponsible reporting.
Former Culture Secretary and Mail columnist Nadine Dorries slammed Jon Donnison’s on-camera speculation, demanding to know who the “propagandist on the BBC” is.
She added: “Is he a journalist?”
Journalist Dan Hodges blasted the reporter, saying it was “entirely reckless and unsubstantiated speculation. It’s not defensible”.
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John Woodcock, former Labour MP and member of the House of Lords, noted that a BBC correspondent had said that the “perception” that Israel bombed the hospital, rather than a misfired Hamas rocket, “matters as much as reality”.
He added noted that it has been the BBC in the first place that has “helped set that perception by faithfully reporting the word of terrorists without verification”.
Spectator columnist Douglas Murray said: “The BBC, Sky etc push a false story about Israel bombing a Gaza hospital (It was a Palestinian-fired rocket) and this in turn pushes genocidists-in-waiting to process to their next stage. Nice team-work, guys.”
Journalist Dan Hodges reacted to the BBC’s coverage with fury, saying they “can no longer be viewed as a credible, impartial source on the Gaza conflict. It reported Hamas claims uncritically”.
He said to forget the row over the BBC’s refusal to use the word “terrorist” in regards to Hamas, as this latest editorial outrage makes it pale in comparison.
Mr Hodges said the BBC is now in a “terrible place” and demanded a “serious investigation”.
The fury comes as Foreign Secretary James Cleverly begs for calm and demands journalists “wait for the facts” and “report them clearly and accurately”.
He said: “Last night, too many jumped to conclusions around the tragic loss of life at Al Ahli Hospital.
“Getting this wrong would put even more lives at risk.
“Cool heads must prevail.”
The BBC has been contacted for comment.
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