To the editor of BBC- Newsnight
Wow! Your story "Pro-Israel lobby on Capitol Hill" (Newsnight, May 8) does not half exaggerate. Do you really expect intelligent readers to believe that the Washington administration is unable to think for itself and requires the permission of a Jewish lobby before it makes a move? Or that Malcolm Honlein is, in your words, the most influential private citizen in American foreign policy", more influential even than Donald Rumsfeld, Colin Powell, Condolezza Rice, Dick Cheney, James Baker or George Bush snr. You must be kidding.
The only credible part of Tom Carver's story is his statement that that "it is "received wisdom" (is that the same as conventional wisdom?) in much of the Arab world, that a so-called Zionist lobby has a stranglehold on American foreign policy. This is the same Arab World wisdom, which persistently spreads blatant lies, claiming, for example, that the Jews committed the 9/11 tragedy, that the Israelis distribute aphrodisiac chewing gum to the Egyptians, that they deliberately spread AIDS, that the holocaust did not happen and that the "Protocols of Zion" is factual?
Does the BBC's evident esteem for Arab World wisdom, perhaps explain the obvious anti-Israel bias which has crept into so many BBC programmes?
I would appreciate your response.
On this letter we received the following answer:
Dear Y Malachi
Thank you for your e-mail regarding 'Newsnight'.
I understand you were concerned that the BBC has exhibited an anti-Israeli bias in the aforementioned programme. You should know that the BBC is committed to due impartiality and across our programming we have tried to explain how the current situation in the Middle East started and has since developed. We have also given air-time to representatives from across the political spectrum and our correspondents are equally vigorous in their questioning of interviewees regardless of whether they are Israeli or Palestinian.
Nevertheless, I recognise you may continue to hold a different opinion about the BBC's impartiality. Please be assured that I have registered your comments and added them to the daily Duty Log. This in turn will be made available to senior management within the BBC and the production team involved. Feedback of this nature helps us when making decisions about future BBC programmes and services and your comment will play a part in this process.
Thank you for taking the time to contact us with your views.