Guardian

Lauren Booth Censured by UK’s media standards authority


You might remember Lauren Booth’s essay for Comment is Free, on the Mavi Marmara incident, published on 2 June.  Booth was a passenger on the 2008 Free Gaza boat and can be seen in this photo receiving a Gaza passport from Hamas leader, Ismail Haniyeh.  (See CiF Watch’s post “How to be a Useful Idiot“)

Booth’s CiF piece included such objective passages as this, which not only defended the IHH terrorists on board the flotilla (portraying them as innocent victims of Israeli aggression), but used rhetoric simply dripping with sarcasm and unbridled contempt for the Jewish state:

“Let me ask you one final question that’s been troubling me, as sympathy for those apparently fragile Israeli commandos continues to pour in. If you were on a boat in the Mediterranean and hundreds of the world’s most notoriously violent soldiers started falling from the sky, wouldn’t you defend yourself? The brave human beings on the Mavi Marmara were acting in self-defence.”

As an excellent post at the blog of Honest Reporting (HR) noted, Lauren Booth was recently censured by Ofcom, the UK’s media standards authority, regarding her coverage of the Mavi Marmara incident.  Regarding a broadcast on the June 5 edition of “Remember Palestine,” Ofcom found that her report on Press TV (an English language network owned by the Iranian regime), failed to show even a modicum of impartiality.  (See Ofcom’s full report.) The report cited, among other breaches of ethical standards, these comments from the broadcast:

  • Lauren Booth: “Israeli commandoes . . . committed a massacre of innocent civilians sailing aid ships to the besieged Gaza strip.”
  • Lauren Booth: “This was obviously a barbarous attack on civilians.”

Ofcom’s report also chided Booth for failing to:

  • “…balance the right to freedom of expression on one hand, with the need…to preserve due impartiality”

On these pages, many of us have noted the phenomenon of so many seemingly sophisticated, highly educated, CiF columnists who possess what can, at best, be described as a remarkably facile view of the Middle East – blindly accepting a narrative of the Israeli Goliath doing battle with the Palestinian David. Such “progressive” journalists’ seeming erudition is reduced to an almost puerile naiveté when dealing with totalitarian terrorist movements – whose leaders are shamefully misogynistic and anti-gay, openly call for Israel’s annihilation, and engage in explicitly anti-Semitic invectives.

Booth, winner of HR’s 2008 Dishonest Reporting award, ended her CiF piece with the following (reportedly, while maintaining a straight face):

“…And because of [Israel’s actions] many died. Something of the hopeful child in me died with them.”

Yes, that pesky Jewish nation – not only randomly massacring innocent civilians, but corrupting the innocence of youth.

(See CiF Watch’s video, “The Lies of Lauren Booth”, for more background)

12 replies »

  1. The woman is absolutely mad. She appears on the Press TV program wearing a headscarf – which many Arabs do not wear on TV.

    And then she starts the usual disgusting tropes – the Mavi Marmara, carrying a boatload of IHH terrorists and well-fed Western layabouts is just like the Exodus trying to reach mandatory Palestine. The deaths of 9 IHH terrorist is a “massacre” … etc. etc.

  2. Just BTW – perhaps the prize for chutzpah for 2010 could be awarded to her for her comment that “we must not forget the people from the mavi Marmara being held hostage in Israel”.

    Apart from the fact that these “hostages” were sent packing within about 24 hours I think she forgot the one real hostage. Gilad Shalit.

  3. Lauren Booth – the mother who takes her kids out of school to go on trips to Gaza and teaches them to sing songs praising Hamas.

    Good work Adam

  4. Nice work Adam.

    Booth’s breathlessly brainless style exposes the case against the bigots wonderfully, ”hundreds of commandos” against ”a boat on the Mediterranean” is something that didn’t happen because we’ve all seen the movie.

    The repeated use of the word ”boat” which means “A relatively small, usually open craft of a size that might be carried aboard a ship” has been a subliminal signature of this flotilla foolishness. The Marmara is very much a ship – and the ruffians aboard were very much jihadists, mercenaries and out for Israeli blood.

  5. Well done Adam.

    Lauren’s wacky antics continue to amuse Duvidl. But why do we hear no entertaining support act from sister Cherie, the suicide-bomber sympathiser or father Tony, the hard-drinking Scouse git of “Till Death Us Do Part”, a 60s TV comedy series?

    That’s what Duvidl calls a meshuge mishpocha/meshuga mishpacha.

  6. I was lucky enough to have missed that CiF article. What a disgrace.

    If I were running CiF, the only reason I would ever put that crap online would be to have it publically ridiculed.

    Sadly, though, Ofcom is a bit of a toothless watchdog – except when it comes to the main channels.

  7. Dear pretzelberg,

    Do you care to take issue with the facts in the post? Other than describing it as “crap” (such a trenchant analysis!), do you have any substantive criticism? Just wondering?

    Adam

  8. It could be a severe case of postus colonialisimus guiltus,sadly displayed by some white leftist ladies and gents,where symptoms include an overwhelming admiration for any culture other than their own,no matter how reprehensible it may be.
    Yvonne Ridley is a classic example,but at least she has Stockholm Syndrome to blame.
    Booth,alas,can only blame inherent twattery.

    Time for a song –

    The Booth Ditty

    Come on kiddies sing a long
    Lets all do the Hamas song
    Racist,misogynist,genocidal nutters
    But they’re radical and exotic
    And that’s all that matters

    They fire rockets at their neighbours
    But hey,who cares?
    They’re only Israelis
    And they shouldn’t be there

    So come on kiddies and the guardian
    Come see how Jew bashing can be fun
    And it’s definitely not racist
    Cos we call it anti-zionism,
    And we never ever miss a chance to put fascists down
    Unless,of course,they’re brown,or Islamist
    And wear a cleric’s gown

    So
    Come on kiddies sing a long
    Lets all do the Hamas song
    Racist,misogynist,genocidal nutters
    But they’re radical and exotic
    And that’s all that matters

  9. Now that Lauren Booth has been censured, what are the consequences to her? Are there any tangible consequences? Is she fined, prohibited from broadcasting for a brief period of time, her work reviewed before presentation, anything? Or will this some how be twisted into a badge of honor?

  10. Adam Levick, in your zeal (zealotry) you perhaps misunderstood pretzel’s intention, baby. He referred to Booth’s original piece on CIF as “crap” – quite correctly – NOT this analysis, Adam!