Wednesday, 5 September 2007

BBC framing of Blair's Middle East 'peace task'

Jeremy Bowen isn't the worst of the BBC's Middle East 'correspondents', but, as with much of the BBC's regional coverage, the whole tenor of the following piece still assumes Blair's political and moral bona fides for the 'peace envoy' job. In this example, Bowen focuses on Blair's 'thoughtful' selection of residence and 'good intentions' in desiring to 'fix' the problems of Gaza and the West Bank.

Never does it seemingly occur to Bowen that Blair's appointment by the Quartet is itself specifically meant to prop-up Abbas/Fatah and further undermine Hamas. Blair might see, 'deep down', the need, at some stage, to 'talk' with Hamas, but this - rather obvious truth - comes nowhere near acknowledging their fundamental mandate nor the legitimate case which they articulate on behalf of the Palestinians who elected and support them.

Bowen may state some of the 'intractable problems' here in seeking a negotiated settlement, but he fails to recognise or specify the kind of window-dressing exercise that's going on with Blair and the Quartet, a posture which remains umbilically tied to Israel's long-term occupation agenda.


Bowen's diary article

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