Thou shall not criticize the BBC at ‘Comment is Free’?

John Ware published an essay on Nov. 10 at ‘Comment is Free’ titled ‘A personal tragedy, and a hammer blow for an honest institution‘, about the resignation of George Entwistle as the BBC’s director general after a Newsnight report wrongly implicated Tory peer Lord McAlpinein in the Jimmy Savile child abuse scandal.

Ware, a BBC Panorama reporter since 1986, criticized BBC senior management, which he accused of having “collapsed into a dysfunctional heap” under the strain the Savile and McAlpinein crises, before rallying to Auntie’s defense thus:

“The irony is, as Michael Grade used to say, when he ran Channel 4: “It’s the BBC that keeps us honest.” That was true then, and it remains true today, despite the trouble that Entwistle’s resignation has prompted.

At almost every level, BBC journalism illuminates areas of our national life, and around the world, with a care and precision unmatched by other media outlets. On any objective view, the BBC is overwhelmingly a force for good and understanding. And this really is the point. The Newsnight debacle is an aberration.”

A CiF commenter took exception to Ware’s argument, writing this:

 

Here’s a capture of the BBC report the commenter linked to:

A bit later, however, the comment was deleted, deemed inappropriate by CiF moderators:

 

Finally, just as a FYI, there’s a great site I’ve recently ‘come across’ whose managing editor expertly fisked the report cited above and, more broadly, superbly illuminates the BBC’s consistent anti-Israel bias with “care and precision” unmatched by any other blog.