The BBC’s Spotty Coverage of Terrorism in Israel: November 2018

United Hatzalah volunteers at the scene of the Har Nof synagogue terror attack. Photo: United Hatzalah

The Israel Security Agency’s report on terror attacks during November 2018 shows that throughout the month, a total of 645 incidents took place: 106 in Judea and Samaria, eight in Jerusalem, two within the “green line,” and 529 in the Gaza Strip sector.

In Judea and Samaria and Jerusalem, the agency recorded 89 attacks with petrol bombs, 12 attacks using improvised explosive devices (IEDs), five arson attacks, three shooting attacks, one vehicular attack, and four stabbing attacks.

Incidents recorded in the Gaza sector included seven attacks with petrol bombs, five attacks using IEDs, one shooting attack, eight grenade attacks, one attack using an anti-tank missile, and 506 incidents of rocket or mortar fire.

One Israeli soldier was killed and 14 people injured — eight members of the security forces and five civilians.

The BBC News website reported on incidents that took place in the Gaza Strip and southern Israel on November 11, 12, and 13, including rocket and mortar fire, and the launch of an anti-tank missile at a bus:

BBC News website sources report on Gaza incident from Hamas

Sloppy BBC News report omits rocket hits on Israeli homes

False equivalence in BBC News report on Gaza rocket attacks

A BBC report dated November 14 included a brief mention of an unspecified number of grenades thrown by a man trying to infiltrate the Gaza Strip-Israel border.

Among the attacks that did not receive any BBC coverage were a shooting attack on a bus near Beit El on November 7, in which two civilians were injured; a stabbing attack in Jerusalem on November 14, in which four border policemen were injured; a stabbing attack near Beit Jala on November 20, in which one man was injured; a vehicular attack on November 26, in which three soldiers were injured; and an attack in Eilat on November 30, in which two civilians were injured.

If we take the BBC’s reporting of the rocket and mortar attacks launched between November 11 and 13 as having covered all the 506 incidents (although the number used in BBC reports at the time was 460) it is possible to say that the BBC News website reported 79.8 percent of the terror attacks that took place during November.

Since the beginning of 2018 the BBC has reported 31.67 percent of the terror attacks that have actually taken place and 91.7 percent of the resulting fatalities.

Hadar Sela is the Managing Editor of BBC Watch, an affiliate of the Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America (CAMERA).

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Author: Hadar Sela


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