As readers know, I have been an uncompromising supporter of the Israeli action in Gaza. That does not mean I do not appreciate the unfolding humanitarian horror there. It does not mean I am blind to the deaths and injuries which have been caused, or to the destruction of homes and buildings. Just as I am not blind to the terror and suffering caused to the Israeli people by Hamas rocket attacks. Israel has the capacity to rebuild damaged buildings. That is not the case in Gaza.
Which is why I am rather at a loss to understand the decision by the BBC to refuse to show a humanitarian appeal by the Disasters & Emergencies Committee to appeal for aid to Gaza. This is not a political appeal, it is an appeal for the kind of goods, money and services which we all readily gave to help the victims of other disasters like the Indonesian Tsunami. Perhaps the BBC thinks it will come under fire from its detractors and those who support Israel. If so, they have misjudged the situation.
I have no idea what the Israeli attitude to this would be, or that of the Jewish community here. I would hope that like me, they would be in favour of screening this appeal. If Channel 4 and ITV are showing it, then so should the BBC.
UPDATE: Mark Thompson explains the BBC decision HERE. He makes some valid points, but I still think it's a wrong decision.