Monday, August 14, 2006

The BBC Should Fire Orla Guerin

I have never liked Orla Guerin's style of reporting. Far too much comment and emotion. She doesn't report. She emotes. Her "report" tonight on the Ten O'Clock News was a classic example. No attempt at balance. No attempt to give both sides of the argument. Just inane comments like "Today has been a bad day for George W Bush". Oh really? Says who?

She and Fergal Keane represent and demonstrate all that I most dislike about BBC news reporting. Don't get me wrong. Many of their correspondents and reporters are superb. But these two are not. And I would dearly love to see the back of them.

UPDATE: The Drinking from Home blog adds further fuel to the fire by comparing Guerin's report last night to that of Channel 4 News's Alex Thomson. Click HERE.

125 comments:

Lord Simpson (Liberator) of Kabul said...

She's not known as Orla bin Goering for nothing you know - check out Biased BBC for more on Orla and her ilk.

It was a blessed relief when they finally got her out of the Middle East last time - but now she's back. Apparently she's married to a Palestinian - though surprisingly that never seems to get mentioned on the BBC, even though it seems pertinent in light of her reporting style.

macles said...

You'd have loved this evenings report on NDR (Nord Deutsche Rundfunk) then Iain. Straight talking about the futility of Israel's attck on Lebnanon and how ultimately counterproductive it has been. Didn't mince words. No doubt David's Medienkritik will be on it like a flash. I'm firmly with NDR though. As to Guerin, she was held at gunpoint once by Israeli soldiers who made jokes about putting a bullet in her head, not realising she spoke Hebrew. She may have chip on her shoulder, but it's understandable. I'd rather her emoting than the faux-gravitas of those pompous ass American tv reporters anywhow. My opinion. Everyone has a personal bias. Isn't it a bit dangerous to start calling for the head of an individual reporter not to your taste then?

Simon Chapman said...

Quite agree Iain - this evening's BBC news at 10 was classic anti-Israeli all the way through. It's really outrageous that the BBC gets away with peddling this & yet still has the vestige of a reputation for impartiality.

Iain Dale said...

Macles, it's got nothing to do with her not being to my personal taste. There are several reporters who I don;t like but I recognise that they do their job - report factually. She doesn't. It's as simple as that.

Verity said...

I'll take an American reporter over the self-righteous, judgemental, self-glorifying Orla any day.

She's a reporter, for God's sake! No one assigned her to reorder the world. I'll bet she goads that poor husband for not being angry enough.

dt said...

You wouldn't think from the picture you provided that she was capable of much emotion... :-D

macles said...

As I cannot watch the BBC living in North Germany as I do, I'm at a disadvantage as I haven't seen this piece of Guerin journalism. Other snippets, for instance the account of being held by the IDF whilst reporting in Gaza, were descriptive, but somehwat emotional (understandable given what had happened), and in that case, filed under "from our own correspondent" which is to a degree, comment and opinion. She may have gone off the edge since.

Do you ever catch the various "Tageschaus"? I find the German reporters generally restrained, and conservative (small c) in their reporting style. However, they have their detractors too (linked from your site). I just hope you don't want to go to the farcical extreme of "fair and balanced" a la Fox. We don't need that, surely?

towcestarian said...

"...many of their correspondents and reporters are superb".

Can't think of any myself who fall into this category. Could you perhaps come up with half a dozen or so names?

bebopper said...

Don't worry Iain. If the new BBC "Diversity Tzar" gets her way Orla will have to hand over her mic and mini-bar allowance to a local ethnic.
Maybe she could get her husband in. The BBC are big on nepotism.

rosemount man said...

just be glad you don't have to watch Gordon Brewer in Newsnight Scotland...
anyway I must write another complaint...

Machiavelli's Understudy said...

I'm not too fond of her for some of the reasons you mention, Iain- she takes on too much of a US style of reporting, with too much emotional attachment to a story. It isn't necessarily her choice of vocabulary, but the style and intonation of her speech.

I think the reason you give for firing her this time round is slightly tenuous, though. Why can't it be a bad day for someone? I didn't get to see the report, but I'd be content with that comment if she said why rather than who.

Anonymous said...

Yet again another crappy 'Let's whinge at the BBC because it just doesn't alwahys re-inforce our own stereotypes and has the audacity to hire Irish reporters' - puhleease give it a rest..

Iain Dale said...

anonymous, give me a break. i couldnt care less if bbc reporters were irish, venezuelan or lebanese. what i do care about it impartiality and objective reporting.

oop norf said...

It is a bad day for the Israeli Government and their supporters, including George Bush, Tony Blair, and others.

The aim of this past months fighting was to stop Hezbollah firing rockets into Israel, and to recover two captured soldiers. Neither of those things have been accomplished, and a lot of innocent people have died for nothing.

If that's not a bad result and a bad day I'd like to know what is.

garypowell said...

Professional honest reporting and the BBC are no longer on the best of terms. In fact it seems to me, the divorce is now absolute and final.

Big problem is, apparently 65% of the public still trust the BBC news, this is high but has fallen from 75% in the last 2 years.

The Bias BBC blog have been rampantly recording the BBCs outrageous behavior for the last 4 years.

However just when you thought the BBCs authoritarian socialist, millitant tendencies, could not get worse, they do.

Francis Walsingham said...

She's an appalling reporter. My skin has crawled listening to her for many years. She and Keane must get on like a house on fire. How many times have we heard, particularly on the 1 o'clock news where standards are even more lax than they are at 10 o'clock:

George: So Orla, this looks like it's been a bad day for Olmert/Bush/Blair. Is he losing this war/argument?

Orla: Well many of the people I have been speaking to think he is...

And on and on and on ad nauseum.

I don't object to her revealing her views on air, fair enough, but I do object to being forced to pay her salary. Whatever your point of view on the issues on which she injects substantial "comment" into her reportage, surely you are able to recognise the logic in this position. If the Guardian does it for you every morning, it's like having a mandatory subscription to National Review upon threat of fines and imprisonment. That has to be bananas.

Kevin Davis said...

Fergal Keane has driven me mad for years. I agree, all that emotive drivel, rather than reporting the facts, is a disgrace that the BBC should be eradicating.

"From our own correspondent" demonstrates this more than anything. The trouble is it is not a case of them being new Labour, more Lib Dem. They always moralise and assume that they are always right.

Splashitallover said...

Orla Guerin does seem biased towards the Palestinians. It's a tone thing as much as anything else.

As for it being a bad day for George Bush, how on earth does she know?

Lady fFnchley said...

Ah, so she's married to a Palestinian - that would explain her pro-Palestinian bias. Pisses me off big time that my TV license money to the Biased Broadcasting Corporation goes to finance her bleating.

Michael Oakeshott said...

Guerin SAYS the soldiers said that. She is a liar. Why do we have to put up with this cow on what is effectively a taxpayer funded service. Another leach from the Republic of f***ing Ireland.

Another one for Mossad. I will happy pay the plane fare to Tel Aviv for Orla Eichmann.

Verity said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Tone made me do it - he's a bad influence said...

I was so angry about the 10 o'clock views that i failed to record it and went straight to the pub.

I believe that tonight, a new epoch has arrived.

Where is our Powell?, our Churchill in the Wildeness?, our Richard Coeur de Lion?

Iain, I believe the time has come for you to invest in a pair of poodles.

Machiavelli's Understudy said...

I think, in order for us to keep the high ground on this one, we should stop peddling these falsehoods about her being married to a Palestinian. If people can't be bothered to check simple elements like that, it doesn't bode well when we're supposed to know a story better than she does.

One thing that does trouble me is the massive conflict of interest posed by her (Irish) Labour Party candidacy for a European Parliament seat, before she joined the BBC. Why haven't any of you bothered to mention that?

Benedict White said...

Iain, Having both lived in a war zone (Er.. the Lebanon), and watched chanel 4 news earlier, I was amused by her report.

I note that the Channel 4 report claimed it was only the center of Bint Jbeil that had been badley damaged. Not having been there since the cease fire I cant comment on who is right.

What I can say is that having seen some f8cking bestial fighting and its aftermath I am not surprised that Ola seemed unable to find a building unscared by war, as thatis the nature of war.

What I would say in the defence of the "emoting" is that I have seldom met anyone who actualy knows what it is like and so perhaps the reporters are trying to get that accross.

As for balance, that is difficult in war. In my experiance crosing front lines is lethal, so easch reporter has a rstricted view, and cam only report what they see. It is then up to the editor to get an equivelent reporter on the other side to do the same thing.

I must have missed the bad day for George Bush bit, I would not have said it, tjough in many ways it is true.

Who wins a war is mostly a matter of fact, however sometimes, as in this case it is a matter of opinion. Each side plays to their own audience. Nasrallah is better at it than Olmert, ergo, Israel thinks it has lost.

That said, don't lose hope. I thimk in the next Lebanease election they will chear Hezboulah but vote elsewhere.

WmByrd said...

My problem with Olga Guerin is not that she's prejudiced - that's so transparently obvious; it's that she's a soft, plastic-paddy weepy-wimp in a field of conflict that needs reporters with a tough, nuanced sense of history and moral agency, and some personal modesty.

Ditto Fergal K.

Barbara Plett too. (How on earth did she survive that much-criticised R4 FOOC broadcast after Yasser Arafat's death?)

OK, I can see that if you live somewhere Far Away and engage emotionally with the inhabitants, you start to identify with them, listen to the locals and work up your own terribly well-informed historical view, going all patronisingly goo-ey and one-sided. But usually you don't then insist on rushing to the mic to tell the world What I Feel.

---------
macles -
"I cannot watch the BBC living in North Germany as I do"

You should be so lucky.

----
The Hezbollah guerillas are well-armed by Iran and Syria, base themselves in villages among Lebanese women and children and refugees to whom they offer food and money and er, 'safe' lodging. For the IDF to reach the Litani River and at least moderately beat the bejabers out of Hezbollah on the way without the mass-murder of Lebanese civilians Nasrallah had set up - that sounds pretty impressive to me, though Olmert's poor leadership and PR didn't help.
The Lebanese Government needs to do some actual governing, implement UN Res 1559, disband the Hzbl, de-politicise the Leb army and use it to prevent problems on the border, not help to cause them. (Ah, but they don't want to -And they also don't want to fight once they';ve stirred things up. An old problem)

Maybe (to paraphrase the Munich comic Karl Valentin's joke about Hitler in 1944) it would have been better if Hezbollah hadn't caused a war that was forced upon them by provoking Israel into making an unprovoked attack.

If 'Lebanon is witnessing a historic victory' (Sheik Nasrallah) then I give the next outbreak of war two months max. Unless the world suddenly decides to get a more backboned and principled UN Sec Gen.

Anonymous said...

Guerin, Keane, Bowen, Simpson, Myrie - there's nothing to choose between them. They're all alumni of the worthy, liberal, touchy-feely, victim cult school of journalism.

But if we could get one scalp out of this (just like we got the 'Scud Stud' after Gul II)...

Anonymous said...

It's also worth knowing that Orla Guerin was an (unsuccessful) candidate for the Irish Labour Party in the 1994 European elections. Just in case you had any lingering doubts about where her political sympathies lie...

Anonymous said...

Solution, don't buy a TV license. Problem solved. I haven't had one for six years.

Nicholas Bennett said...

Congratulations Ian.

I'm glad you saw last night's news. It was a disgracefully biased set of reports from the Middle East. Orla Guerin report was an editorial masquerading as a news report.

I expect there to be a clear division between reporting the news and opinions particularly on the public service broadcasting channel paid for by the licence fee.

If the BBC wishes there to be opinions on the news it should be done through interviews with non BBC people so that it is clear as to the standpoint of the person being interviewed.

2br02b said...

macles, Guerin may have a chip on her shoulder, and that may be understandable. But that does not means she should be allowed to subject the rest of us to the biased bulls**t she spouts, whethere due to a chip on her sholder, fish under her armpit or anything else.

I do not ask her to control or change her own emotions or opinion. What I do demand is that the BBC cease and desist forthwith from giving her a platform, and adding insult to injury, paying her (with our money) to do this.

Graeme Archer said...

I thank the person who revealed Guerin's marital arrangements. She stinks as a reporter and I'm sick of listening to her anti-Israeli, nostril-flaring contempt for those of us who don't subscribe to her world view; now at least it makes a bit more sense. Yet more double-standards of course. I wonder how a reporter who happened to be married to a senior Tory would fare in the corporation?

Pulsar said...

Which wise owl at the BBC put these two individuals into position?

Paul Linford said...

I don't think calling for other journalists' heads is a good idea, on the whole. Who knows where it will end?

Pulsar said...

Over on Conservativehome "Daring Dave" to meet the press--no policy announcements and not a reaction to
Party unrest!A quick look at his spokes comment that this is not a reaction looks a bit like being "thrilled" with Mayoral applications!!!

casual observer said...

Orla is about as balanced as Pete Doherty, and that's probably being a bit unkind to Pete...

Barney said...

Hands up how many of you have spent a similar amount of time in the Middle East to Orla G?

And how many of you have undergone journalism training?

Is there anyone out there with one or more hands up?

This debate is a bit like criticising the way a surgeon makes an incision. Best stick to what you know in future, eh fellas?

Peter Risdon said...

She is a keaner

(from the Urban Dictionary:

keane

To write or broadcast in a maudlin, excessively emotional way. Word coined in honour of the BBC's Feargal Keane. Similar to keening, only more sanctimonious.

A hideous keaning sound filled the airwaves.

In this issue of the Independent, Robert Fisk keanes about damage to Hizbollah. Luckily, this is hidden behind a subscribers-only firewall in the online version.

Barney said...

How would someone married to a senior Tory fare? How about having a political editor who's a known Tory? Does that even the score up a bit? If you keep Robinson can we keep Orla?

Beachhutman said...

yes, she's absolutely the pits.Insn't she the one who went all weepy over that old terorist Arafat? Talk about sypathies showing.

Campbell Stephen said...

I have tried to avoid the whole thing on TV.

If its not OG emoting in full kate Adey mode, then its some deeply unpleasant Israeli government official turning up the "righteous indignation count" to full volume.

A lot have people have died and the israelis have been given a thorough bloody nose by an outfit with a fraction of their military power but I am little wiser on the basis of all the news reporting, until I saw map in a newspaper over the weekend

Theo Spark said...

She is even worse than Miss Caroline 'Haw-Haw' Horley

vervet said...

I see verity is here with its usual level of constructiveness and bile.

I'm the very last one to promote censorship, but in this case I, Iain, please feel free to ditch this waste of space.

Pulsar said...

Barney-based on the Guerin accuracy formula, I am, as you would anticipate ,holding up four hands!

Ruth Bennett said...

"rosemount man" mentions Gordon Brewer on Newsnight Scotland.

Not having seen him recently I can't comment on his reporting style these days, however I would not be surprised if he showed a leftish bias as rosemount man implies..

I was a student contempory with him at university in the late 70s -and active in student politics. Gordon was a hardline "Trot" -which particular branch (IMG, WRP, SWISO etc) I can't remember as the extreme left kept splitting and reforming under different banners.
(The machinations of Sheridan and the SSP are nothing new to us left observers)

Some of the Trots were quite amusing and one could have a drink with them whilst discussing the evils/merits of capitalism. Not Gordon though - he took the overthrow of the system very seriously.

I was amazed when he popped up on television some years later as a BBC Reporter ((MI5 were obviously not recruiting the year he left University).

Of course he may have recanted his extreme left wing views and for all I know be a paid up member of the Tory Party these days....Nothing like a healthy salary and generous expense account to make one less keen on a Marxist revolution and subsequent socialist redistribution!

griswold said...

Barney with the greatest respect you are a dimwit. Think about the blog carefully and try again. Give up on analogies, too.

barny thanks said...

Barney - blimy - I didn't realise she'd undergone Jihadist training in the middle east! (presume you had a typo).

She's even more of a danger than I thought.

HF said...

I do believe that the Israeli bombing was totally disproportionate.

I also agree that the BBC reporting yesterday and not just Guerin's was as biased as it gets in announcing a victory for Hezbolla. One of them even said that all the people in the area welcomed the Hezbolla victory! Did the BBC do a poll?

Was Guerin the same lady who cried whilst filming Yasser Arafat's funeral?

Michael Oakeshott said...

Yes Barney...

So from now let's not criticise Hitler. After all what do we know about killing Jews?

And Pol Pot. - after all only those who have committed genoicde really understand it?

Your arguments could equally be applied to Harold Shipman.

Congratulations you are an idiot.

Steve B said...

Barny - you must be a journalist to have such a condescending tone!

As for journalism training what do they teach you there? How to hold a pen? Or how to take a suitably left wing position on every issue of note?

2br02b said...

I spent five years in Arab countries in the Middle East, Barney. How long have you?

Any resemblance to the truth in what OG is paid by the BBC to tell us is pure coincidence.

And no, I did not have any journalist training, thank God. As a result I am still able to do more than just transcribe selected news releases from the side you support (the key skill for most news journalists these days, it seems) or parade my prejudices in the form of inane and juvenile 'opinions'.

In my time I have been present at a number of events that were reported in the media. On not one occassion was the report accurate; therefore one is driven to conclude that all the other events one does not attend are not reported accurately either.

Anonymous said...

But we ordinary British people love Orla Guerin for exactly the same reasons that you Tory Zionists dislike her. She tells the truth rather than being Fox News-style "Fair and Balanced" when the Israelis have so blatantly been breaking international law in Lebanon.

Umbongo said...

The "barneys" of this world always miss the point - deliberately or otherwise. Who cares whether she has a PhD in Jounalism Science or has spent 200 years in the Middle East - she produces crap, opinionated journalism. I want disinterested delivery of facts as "news" not a litany of "cry me a river" sobbing

taff said...

No Orla Guerin isn't married to a Palestinian. It's worse than that, she is infact married to Michael Georgy of Reuters - check out some of his "reporting"

Anonymous said...

Barney - I think that's what most of us think about Orla, that she should stick to what she knows (ie reporting) and not do political commentary.

towcestarian said...

barney

Presumably in your odd little world, only Foreign Office manarins and Prime Ministers should be allowed to comment on British foreign policy? Thought not.

Anonymous said...

You've lost the battle in the tory party, the blind pro-Israeli stance has thankfully changed to something more balanced.

All this is just rage against the dying of the light.

I'd rather have the BBC than any of the craven US stations any day.

All news is emotionalised of course, all you're unhappy about is that there is nothing that lands which is pro-Israeli because there is nothing to emotionalise. If there had been the flattening of Haifa and ten times as many Israeli deaths you would have been hapy wioth the reporting.

Brynley said...

Of course Orla Guerin should be dismissed. And Fergal Keane. And Fox News should be beamed into every public square on giant screens. And there should be martial music on the BBC. But they should keep the weather forecasts. And did you know they faked the moon landings.........zzzzzz.

Anonymous said...

By the way, this thread is as good an argument against care in the community that have found. At least they're not self harming through externalising their feelings onto an organisation which is out of their reach.

Thank God they're not representative of the conservative party, probably something more sinister I would imagine.

Anonymous said...

One would presume that you would want the whole of US TV news to be sacked because of their one sidedness.

You can't condmen one without the other.

raincoaster said...

She has received numerous emailed death threats, and some websites falsely attribute her alleged "slant" to her marriage to a Palestinian - a claim she dismisses as "completely outrageous" and deeply racist. Actually, in September Guerin did get married - but to Michael Georgy, a Reuters correspondent currently working in Baghdad, whom she met in Bethlehem. "And he's not Palestinian."


From the David Rowan interview with her.

Partial Bio:
David Rowan has been editor of The Jewish Chronicle since May 2006.

David said...

I've spent a lot of time in the Middle East and have been to Gaza many times. Orla G is a bad reporter in that she ALWAYS adds in her opinions rather than juts report the facts. She has already been banned by the Israelis which is why she was sent off to Africa but suddenly she appears back in the Middle East but only reporting from Lebanon as the BBC knew she wouldn't get any help on the israelis side.

Barney - stop playing the "chickenhawk" argument to try and protect Orla namely that no-one can criticise her unless they are Kate Adie or John Simpson etc!

PS I note that Channel 4 reported from exactly the same village that Orla did... how interesting therefore to see that in fact the village was NOT flattened but some buildings (housing Hezbollah civilian clothed fighters...?) were. The outskirts of the village and indeed most of the buildings were left untouched and Channel 4 reported on the same day as Orla. How DOES she explain that?

Verity said...

Yes, Orla Guerrin should be fired - out of a powerful cannon, in the general direction of the Mediterranean.

AnyonebutBlair said...

Sorry Barney, it's fair comment to criticise Orla's biased and emotional commentary masquerading as news reporting. My lack of journalistic training and time spent in the middle east is not relevant to Orla's bias. I'm frankly tired of the BBC and it's cheap and lazy liberal left journalism and mad as hell that I pay a licence fee to have it poured into my TV. If I wanted the Guardian I'd buy it. I don't and don't see why I have to pay to suffer our state funded and sponsored media monster adopting the same editorial policy and world-view.

strapworld said...

The problem with the BBC reporting, in general, is that they have all lost balance (except Bill Turnbull who can dance a bit).

Seriously, the latest missive from within is that they (BBC) do not have enough black or asian reporters out in the field.

I think the BBC have forgotten the actual numbers of people living in this country and I believe that those from immigrant communities are over represented rather than the reverse.

Interesting points from Macles at 10.34pm but if that is the case she should not be reporting from that part of the world, should she?

It is time for the BBC to be privatised.

garypowell said...

Barney
You make possibly the most silly comment I have ever read. I am not an actor but I know bad acting when I see it. This could apply to just about everything else. I hope if a member of your family died on an opperateing table, you would question the competence of the doctor?

One doctor that comes to mind killed over 300 of his patience, because people like you thought that profesionals knew what they were doing.

Anonymous said...

Barney said...
Best stick to what you know in future, eh fellas?

9:04 AM

Perhaps that is the bit of wisdom most journalists should abide by!

Anonymous said...

I watched the "news" report with increasing frustration. There was no attempt at balance and the obvious personal bias discredited it as serious reporting. Sure she has her own opinions but payng her wages to hear her opinion isn't what my licence fee is for.Do the BBC have editors for news programmes?
I don't know about emoting; she has the dreariest voice and presentation
on TV>

Rog said...

Iain, you must check this out on the "Drinking From Home" blog:

Orla Guerin - Busted!

Basically, she's been caught telling whoppers yesterday in her report from Bint Jbeil.

Sack time?

Nah, the Beeboids will promote her.

permanentexpat said...

The great laugh is that there was a time when Germans listened to the BBC for the truth.
I have no trouble getting all German TV stations...and you are 'more likely' to get good reporting there than the BBCrap.

Oh! poor Orla! Did some Israeli squaddie joke about putting a bullet in her biased head?

There are some who would have sawn it off & shown it on Arab TV....and not a single joke in sight.
(Macles: "Isn't it a bit dangerous to start calling for the head of an individual reporter not to you taste then?") Now THERE'S a joke.

Verity said...

Al-Jazeera has less biased reporting than the BBC, and seems to model itself on what the BBC World Service once was.

Elipsis said...

You can see this report if you type "Orla Guerin" into BBC's search, it's top video on the right.

I think the actual quote is "This is a bad chapter in Bush's war on terror." Other quotes include a camera surveying some abandoned munitions, "It is with these weapons that Hezbollah fought one of the most powerful armies in the world." Also, looking at a devasted street, "Israel tried and failed to take this town ... the international community may well ask how Israel can explain all this in the name of fighting Hezbollah." Perhaps because of the aforementioned fierce resistance?

Anonymous said...

If true, it's a shame she is married to a Palistinian. Imagine if she was married to Matt Frei, (BBC talking head, Washington). The mixture of arrogance, smugness and regurgative emoting could challenge even Peter Hain.

towcestarian said...

To the various anonymouses who diapprove of the Iain calling for OG's sacking. Unlike The Guardian or Fox News, we don't pay the wages of their biased reporters unless we choose to. With the BBC, we are forced to subsidise the news coverage, so are perfectly entitled as stakeholders to say we want the reporters sacked (it won't happen of course).

And to anonumouse 7:20; being smug about not buying a TV licence is not clever. You are no better than any other tax dodger or benefit cheat - ie just a common criminal. If you are not paying on principle - fine, but then you shuold publicise your name and make your case for non-payment in court.

AnyonebutBlair said...

For a laugh I've lodged a formal complaint with the BBC, but don't hold your breath....
"In two separate news pieces from Orla Guerin in Bint Jbeil in Lebanon yesterday she gave a biased anti-israeli and anti-american commentary disguised as news, in fact based on the attached weblink, her commentary was misleading if not downright untruthful
http://drinkingfromhome.blogspot.com/2006/08/orla-guerin-busted.html
It goes further e.g. "In a month of fighting, Israel couldn’t beat Hezbollah - probably not how its ally the United States expected things to turn out. For George Bush this is a bad chapter in the war on terror"
How can Olra say this? What does beating Hezbollah look like? On what basis can she make such observations? Has she asked George Bush or one of his spokesmen if this is a "bad chapter" or is it just Orla's opinion? A very shoddy piece of journalism
Will be BBC take any action to remove this obviously biased reporter from the news programmes?
Will the BBC apologise for what is clearly a misleading if not untruthful storyline?
I await your rejection of this and your self-justification with interest

Barney said...

You lot are absolutely hilarious! I love this blog. Bees in bonnets and knickers in twists left right and centre.

All those who put their hands up in the air get a gold star but all of you get my smug lefty consternation for failing to acknowledge the BBC's most senior political voice, who is on screen all the damn time giving his opinions, speculations and gesticulations, is openly Conservative but still a good journalist.

We all have beliefs and interpretations - even the little people inside your TV set. I'm just amazed its taken so many of you this long to notice. No one
heard of Edward Murrow or Bill O'Reilly?

Anonymous said...

Graeme Archer said...
" I wonder how a reporter who happened to be married to a senior Tory would fare in the corporation?"

Mrs John Maples (AKA Jane Corbin) does pretty well I think on Panorama.

Anonymous said...

Orla Guerin is a former RTE correspondent............


Macles - I watch Tagesschau - Ann Will doesn't look too bad but she is liiert mit ihrer Freundin - and I suppose it has retained the more formal format of News which the BBC surrendered to Infotainment

Rick said...

She qualified as a journalist in 1985 with a Certificate in Journalism from the College of Commerce in Dublin. She also holds a Masters Degree in Film Studies from University College Dublin.

In 2002 Orla was awarded an honorary doctorate from the University of Essex and won the Broadcaster of the Year Award from the London Press Club. In 2003, she was awarded the News and Factual Award by Women in Film and Television UK.

She was born in May 1966.

Rick said...

Wikipedia

Orla Guerin (born 15 May 1966, Dublin, Ireland) is the BBC Africa correspondent, based in Johannesburg. She first came to attention as a journalist and foreign correspondent with RTÉ News. Guerin joined RTÉ in 1987 and was their correspondent in Eastern Europe from 1990-4. Guerin left RTÉ to run as a Labour Party (Ireland) candidate in the 1994 elections to the European parliament. A political novice, Guerin had been hand picked by then Labour Party leader Dick Spring. Even though she was not selected at the party convention, Spring insisted that she be added to the ballot. Vilified as a "parachute" candidate, she did not win a seat (although she did poll relatively well). She joined the BBC in 1995. In 2003 she married Michael Georgy.

Michael Georgy is a Reuters journalist based in Baghdad

bt said...

"In a month of fighting, Israel couldn’t beat Hezbollah - probably not how its ally the United States expected things to turn out. For George Bush this is a bad chapter in the war on terror"

Shome mishtake, shurely.
Would the sainted Orla actually admit that Hezbollah are really terrorists?

Definitely a sacking offence at the beeb - the party line is that they're militants, freedom fighters, or possibly little fluffy bunnies, come to spread sweetness and light over all.

Man in a shed said...

Drinking from home is spot on, as you have pointed out Iain. Guerin should be fired. But what’s more interesting is I'm noticing Channel 4 news being much more even handed - trying to explain the circumstances that their report is gathered in and the influence of the prevailing authority on its composition (where appropriate). In short they are becoming very professional - just saw an excellent report of this type on the 7pm Channel news tonight. When you do your next blog report with these guys Iain give them a pat on the back.

Anonymous said...

I know Orla. First of all, she's not married to a Palestnian, she's married to an Egyptian. They did, however, meet at an Israeli roadblock in the West Bank.
As for the guy who claims she a) was held at gunpoint by Israeli soldiers and b) speaks Hebrew, he doesn't know what he's talking about. Neither of those things are true.
What IS true is that Orla is a perfectly nice person, chatty, personable and lovely...except for the tiny problem of her distate for Jews. Not individual Jews, just Jews as a nation. I used to work with her. She simply has it in her head that Jews writ large don't deserve the same guarantees as the rest of the nations. By definition, Palestinians, Lebanese, et al are VICTIMS of Jewish agression, nevermind who threw the first stone. Nevermind who targets civilians. Nevermind all that stuff. Oh, and while we're at it...Americans. They're also boorish and unsophisticated. They don't see the noble savage as she does - a brave, honorable warrior whose way of life was destroyed by Western imperialism. I'll stop now...

Anonymous said...

It is a sad fact that 'reporters' disappeared from our screens years ago. Now everyone is an 'on-site commentator' which, funnnily enough, certain bloggers kick-up against when they are on a 'side' other than the one they back themselves but not when thee boot is on the other foot.

I am amazed at how so many 'good' conservatives seem to back the 'hoodie' of Israel rather than the 'Tony Martin' of the Palestinians who were kicked out of their homelands.

There is so much pro-Israel institutional bias in the BBC you cannot touch it - and this context makes any counter-view such as that from Orla or fergal stick out like a sore thumb. When, for example, do they mention the hundreds of thousands of displaced Palestinians in the camps? Or the terror of actions in the west bank by the Israeli 'army'?

macles said...

My apologies IF it was Barbara Plett who suffered being held at gunpoint and threatened with death by the IDF. There was an issue of "from our own correspdonent" detailing the incident. I may have got the wrong reporter.

Iain Dale said...

Verity, I have deleted a post from you in which you called another person commenting a "stupid little shit". You hereby get a yellow card.

macles said...

okay anonymous,

busted. You're a plant. Easy trick, but I found the story. You don't know Orla Guerin, do you? Who are you really then?

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/programmes/from_our_own_correspondent/3562938.stm

Anonymous said...

Not it was not 'Orla Bin Goering' (love it!) who publicly blubbed over Arafat.

It was Barbara Pleth who ill advisedly keened over El Corrupto thus earning herself a bums rush posting to the back of beyond.

Guerin's Arabist outlook are a product of Ireland's secret shame - a profound, religiously inspired anti semitism.

macles said...

Iain,

A final thought. A certain foreign office minister name of David Mellor once "went off on one" publically upbraiding IDF soldiers for what he saw as unwarranted mistreatment of (I think) Palestinians. In any case, without even having a gun to his head, or any threats to leave in a body bag that he knew of, a Conservative Minister of the Crown really lost his rag. Orla was quite calm by comparison.

macles said...

Anonymous, read the link, read your own earlier post, and then go away and think who is the one suffering from some kind of shameful illness. You are not well in my opinion.

Iain Dale said...

Mackles, not sure what your point is. David Mellor was a politician. Orla Guerin is not. Although she did stand for the Irish Parliament in 1994 I'm told.

macles said...

Iain, the point is about 'bias' 'objectivity' and 'reporting'. What would satisfy you? If someone has lived through such events how else can they describe them except from their point of view. Every human being has some degree of feeling and emotion. Yours too would have been roused living through such events exactly as a Cosnervative government minister in the 1980's.

Anonymous said...

Well, some posters have been proved to have lied by saying that Guerin was married to a Palestinian and that she never was kidnapped by Israelis in the manner described earlier. The lies appear to be coming from the pro-Israeli side on this blog.

Given that the BBC has considerably more strictures placed on it than the arrogant posters here, there is no comparison as to who people trust more, and it isn't this comments section.

And if anyone starts with that bull about paying for the BBC, if you had enough balls you wouldn't pay your licence fee instead of pathetically bleating about how your tax money is used.

Iain, your comments are well measured but, and it is unfortunate, you attract comments from many undesirables in the Conservative party. They hate Cameron and disagree with every stance (as on Israel) that he has taken, and I, for one, would be glad to see them expelled from the party forthwith.

Helen said...

Is there some reason why all the people who screech about pro-Israeli and pro-Zionist bias on this thread sign in as Anonymous? Just asking.

beethoven writes said...

Could I, for the record, not forget to mention in this posting that John Prescott is also fired?!

macles said...

Helen, in equal measure, people telling blatant lies about Orla Guerin, and lying about the veracity of my posts also sign in as anonymous (on some occasions). When they name themselves and hurl ad hominems of the lowest order in my direction, they get the post deleted and a yellow card ;-)

Verity said...

Helen - a good observation.

Anonymous 9:33 - What makes you think we are members of the Conservative Party, Mong, old thing? You can't expel me "forthwith" because I resigned some time ago, and I have already stated my intention of not voting for them this time if Dave is still the leader. So you're going to be denied the pleasure of seeing me "expelled forthwith". You seem to be an angry little tight-ass. What is your problem?

No one "lied" about Orla Guerrin. Someone mistakenly said she was married to a Palestinian. I was actually under that impression myself. People don't lie about things like that on the internet, you authoritarian nitwit. They are too easily checked.

Anonymous said...

Not the Irish parliament Iain, the European parliament. Not sure whether she'd have been able to do more or less damage there...

Iain Dale said...

I stand corrected.

Johnny Norfolk said...

Why are the Consevatives not complaining about the BBC.

If they come to power they realy need to sort it out. Some sort of independant body with teeth. They have got away with this far to long.

Andy said...

Isn't her assertion that the Israelis couldn't take the town false also? I think they took it twice and received lots of criticism internally for prematurely abandoning it the first time. You have to admire her ability to keep facts from interrupting her loving ode to the Resistance.

Anonymous said...

Tell me yon Judophobes if you can think of one, just one, BBC hack, that you could confidently frame as a Tory Boy or Girl.

Because I can't think of any...

2br02b said...

What IS true is that Orla is a perfectly nice person, chatty, personable and lovely...except for the tiny problem of her distate for Jews. Not individual Jews, just Jews as a nation

Just like treue Heinrich said...

In his speech in Poznan of 6 October 1943, Heinrich Himmler told the SS:

'Ich meine die "Judenevakuierung": die Ausrottung des jüdischen Volkes.
...
'Und dann kommen sie alle, alle die braven 80 Millionen Deutschen, und jeder hat seinen anständigen Juden. Sagt: alle anderen sind Schweine, und hier ist ein prima Jude.'

Translation:

'I am talking about the "Jewish evacuation": the extermination of the Jewish people.
...
'And then along they all come, all the 80 million upright Germans, and each one has his decent Jew. They say: all the others are swine, but here is a first-class Jew.'

So that's all right then, it's nothing personal; Orla's a nice person.... just like Himmler was???

The speech was recorded and is available to download from here:

http://www.holocaust-history.org/himmler-poznan/

Anonymous said...

First of all, she's not married to a Palestnian, she's married to an Egyptian

Michael Georgy, Reuters correspondent. 2003

Barney said...

Dear god Anon 5.04 am, do I really have to shout?

NICK bloody ROBINSON.

Machiavelli's Understudy said...

"In a month of fighting, Israel couldn’t beat Hezbollah - probably not how its ally the United States expected things to turn out. For George Bush this is a bad chapter in the war on terror"

If this is the line of reporting she took, I can't say I really have a problem with it. I mean, there isn't actually anything wrong with it.

If we look at what has happened, it's a true reflection of it. Can anybody here honestly say that Israel did beat Hizbullah in their month-long campaign? That Bush would string out his support for such a campaign with no return to show for it? That, in the face of defeating terrorism for all us Freedom-Lovin' Folks, it isn't a bad chapter in his War On Terror?

I don't think that it's a matter of airing a personal opinion, but a comment based on observations.

It's certainly one that I would share, anyway, regardless of my political position. Israel couldn't get the job done and it's given strength to the Axis of Evil because of it. That's the awful truth and we now have to deal with it.

Michael Oakeshott said...

If you can find Robinson spouting a Tory line them you have a vivid imagination Barney. If this is the straw your are clutching on to, then no wonder most people here think you are a joke.

Barney said...

There is much more evidence for Robinson's Toryism than Guerin's alleged anti-semitism.

He is a former chairman of the Young Conservatives. And all you can come up with for Guerin is that she said it was a bad day for Bush and married an Egyptian.

More to the point, my argument was that Robinson has personal views but is a good journalist, ergo evidence of Guerin's personal views (and what evidence it's been - the false allegation she's married to a *gasp* Palestinian) is not evidence that she is an inaccurate journalist.

Love it - just last week you lot were agreeing its not racist to talk about immigration. But it seems Orla's anti-semitic to make observations about the Middle East while reporting from the Middle East.

It's the irony and hypocrisy that makes this the blog such good entertainment.

Michael Oakeshott said...

Barney, have you had your eyes closed and your ears plugged when Guerin reports? Her record is one of consistent bias, and you only have to do any kind of basic internet search to find dozens of examples of bias now logged against her. Note the lack of detail about Robinson - so what, he was a young tory. You name me a former tory at the beeb, and I will name you two from labour. Wake up. Also many of Guerin's ex-collegaues have gone on record about her anti-Israel and anti-American attitude. Fine, it is a free world, I just shouldn't have to pay for the bitch to tell her lies to the world. Guerin of course also has a political past.

I fear speaking to you is futile, for you seem utterly stupid and to have have missed most of the points people have made against Guerin. Your stupidity has brightened an otherwise dull day.

PS. Are you Gary Elsby in (bad) disguise?

Simon McIlwaine said...

Hmmm.So it turns out, it being pointed out that Guerin doesn't speak Hebrew that-whoops-she wasn't threatened by Israeli soldiers after all, but it was, instead ,Barbara Plett. Funny, isn't it,that, despite extensive searches via Google, I can find NO reference to Ms Plett being threatened by soldiers either!

Perhaps it was the Tooth Fairy who was threatened by those "horrible Israeli squaddies"!

macles said...

Simon McIlwane.

My memory was fine.
Guerlin was threatened

The problem was somebody lying through their teeth about "knowing Orla Guerin". I had quoted a story a remembered from a radio broadcast. I hadn't checked it. I suggested I may have made an error too early. I wasn't actually expecting people to come out of the woodwork writing deliberate lies to try, in their deluded minds, to bolster their "case" against this journalist. I stuck to facts. It's better.

Anonymous said...

The trouble with the "Guerin was threatened" story, is that she has been proven to be a liar:

http://drinkingfromhome.blogspot.com/2006/08/orla-guerin-busted.html

Therefore, why should we trust any stories (note I don't say "reports") by this rancid harridan?

Anonymous said...

I'm the anonymous who posted that he knows Orla and that she was never held at gunpoint. I clicked on that link and it appears that I may have been wrong.
However, she never told me about that and I'm pretty sure it would've come up in all of our heated, albeit friendly discussions.
As for Barbara Plett, do me a favor, mate. She told me flat out to my face that Hamas' bombings of pizzerias could theoretically be construed as military targets because all the young people will serve in the army one day and all the old people have served.
mind you, she could never play devils advocate with a settlers' point of view. they're evil incarnate, full stop, as far as she's concerned. What a great journalist.
I'm so glad I've returned stateside, cuz the sickening strain of British anti-semitism that shows up on these boards is something I'm happy to be away from. Yes, I said it. Anti-Semitism. "Oooh, you horrible person. I'm just legitimately criticizing Israeli GOVERNMENT policy, not condeming Jews." Do me a favor, mate, and look in the mirror and ask yourself why you're not sick to your stomach about Hizbullah's war crimes - operating in civilian areas, launching indiscriminate missiles over population centers, etc. When you select one group for bad behavior and hold them to a different standard, you've got the disease...

Anonymous said...

Reporters are there to REPORT- not give their own little views, interpretation and editorial.

There is so much wrong with our country.

We need a new government.

Simon McIlwaine said...

Macles-I have read the BBC link.So Guerlin says she was held.But you did not mention the all-important context, that she had walked into a perfectly proper IDF undercover operation against what even she admits were armed terrorists (or "militants").

Your earlier post gave the misleading impression that she and her crew were picked up on the street for no reason.The soldiers had no alternative but to hold her and the crew until the operation was over. Standard MO in all armies in battle. OK one or two may have been rude,(BUT I do have doubts about Guerin's credibilty on that and would like to know where and when she learnt Hebrew) but that is what stress does to young squaddies. The IDF are fighting an exceptionally dangerous enemy.The fact that the use of a weapon had to be confirmed by several soldiers before the sniper opened fire is hardly indicative of the IDF being a cruel army!

macles said...

anonymous,

I'm glad that you've returned Stateside too. This thread is about Orla Guerin and reporting. You now resort to casting absurd allegations of anti-Semitism at not just me (I presume) but the British in general. Moreveover, your Rovian "dissembling" won't work here. Say the words "I was wrong" - you might add "sorry". Fortunately, the British won't be fooled by disgusting, transparent misniformation and pure hypocrisy and there I refer purely to your earlier post claiming I "didn't know what I was talking about". You were wrong, so say so.

macles said...

simon mcilwaine. Accusing me now of misleading people when in fact somebody came on this board to claim I had invented a story, is the transparently disingenuous. Once more, Rovian dissembling won't work here. There is a built in filter thank goodness this side of the Atlantic.

Simon McIlwaine said...

So why,Macles,did your earlier posting drop the all-important context which might have clarified why Ms Guerlin was held up,namely the fact that she had walked into a battlefield with armed terrorists and the soldiers could not afford to have had their position compromised? Note that she does not seem to contest the fact that the IDF were dealing with gun-toting terrorists. She seems coyly not to challenge the fact that this was all they were doing on this occasion. I think she knew the soldiers were acting lawfully in opening fire.Certain people are trying to create the impression that the IDF are always capricious and that the Israeli Army is the only army with young squaddies who get stroppy when in dangerous situations. Can you blame them? Remember what happened to the reservists who took a wrong turn and sought refuge in a PA "police station".They were torn, limb from limb. As WAlid Shoebat, repentant former PLO terrorist, has said: "I know what happens to Jews who go the wrong way in these places and get lost-don't you?"Moreover, what certain TV reporters call "just stones" are usually whopping great concrete blocks! And unlike you, Macles, I use my full name when I post comments! Why don't you do the same?

MJS said...

The odd thing is, I don't like Orla Guerin - because to me she seems totally emotionally uninvolved. I also fancy she models herself on Kate Adie without that odd quirk of Kate's personality to make it acceptable.

Soreofhing said...

Simon McIlwaine---Anglicans for Israel website---Christian Zionists---blind Israel supporter---Orla Guerin hater because she speaks up against Israeli misdeeds---BBC hater for ditto---

Thank God for people like Macles who see things as they are.

Soreofhing said...

lord simpson (liberator) of Kabul needs to get his facts straught instaead of swallowing anti BBC, anti Orla Guerin propaganda.
Orla's husband Michael Georgy is a recognised and respected Reuters correspondent and is not Palestinian.


Verity also dislikes Orla's harsh criticism of Israel's misdeeds. Have you ever listened to Bill O'Reilly on FOX News, Verity?
As long as this outrageously biased so called news company exists, nobody should ever think about damning the Beeb.

Soreofhing said...

OK Simon McIlwaine, we will use your term and deem the Palestinian kids' weapons as "great concrete blocks" instead of "just stones" when they stand in front of 60 ton Israeli tanks and hurl these things at the poor Israelis inside who then answer with tank rounds.
Make you feel any better?

Can't you dredge up´any better arguements than that?

ross said...

She said, if I remember correctly, "The Hizbollah rockets go out, and we all wait for the inevitable Israeli reply". I think she not only gave away the true order of this conflict, but her sympathies.

Anonymous said...

Soreofhing

I am always honoured to be called a Zionist! Thank you for brightening my Monday.
Blessings,

SIMON

Simon McIlwaine said...

Thanks, Soreofhing,for publicising
"Anglicans for Israel." Our website is at:
www.anglicansforisrael.com

We are always delighted to welcome new members!

Blessings,

Simon McIlwaine

Anonymous said...

You folks should google Orla Guerin crack of her ass or Katty Kay nude...soembody knows soemthing about Iran/Contra and Orla Guerin.