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John Pilger and the Anglo-Jewish Community
Last uploaded : Monday 23rd Sep 2002 at 00:40
Contributed by : Richard Ford



I had the misfortune to watch the ITV production of "Palestine Is Still An Issue", John Pilger's production on ITV last night.

Following the end of Yom Kippur it made very disturbing viewing for me and I suspect most others in the Jewish Community.

It will not change Israel Government policy nor will it effect anything the Palestinian Authority will undertake in the future.

This programme was directed at the people of the United Kingdom. It's purpose was surely to put pressure on the UK Jewish Community and encourage anti-Semitic sentiment in this Country.

So, what are we going to do about it?

No doubt the Jewish Press will highlight and criticise the blatant anti-Israel bias of the programme.

The Board of Deputies will protest, no doubt. BICOM and others will sent out reams of protest e-mails to me and others sympathetic to Israel.

But the viewers who saw that programme will never see our protests. They will have formed their opinions from that show and there will be nothing to change their minds. Indeed, this morning, they are probably more interested in the fortunes of Michael Barrymore than the rights and wrongs in the Middle East

This is just another instance of the necessity of having a dedicated Jewish Radio station in London. When I presented the Jewish Programme on Spectrum, we were informed of TV programmes of interest to the Jewish Community many weeks before they went to air. Indeed, we were sent preview videos of the productions. We had plenty of time to contact the producers and presenters of such shows and bring them to air to talk about their productions.

I was able to bring the two sides in the Agonot problem, namely Gloria Proops and the Office of the Chief Rabbi together to turn what was originally a street protest to a meaningful meeting between the two parties.

That is an example of the power of radio.

I therefore urge you all now to back us all the way in our effort to bring a permanent Jewish radio station to the airwaves. Not just tacit approval but positive action and support.

Through our own efforts Shalom FM is returning on January 5th 2003 for a mere 28 days with all the restrictions that the Radio Authority impose. We will do our best in that period to make our mark to try and redress the balance.

Please now stand up and be counted and make positive steps to assist us to give the Anglo-Jewish Community a voice before it is all too late.

Richard Ford

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