We have known for a while, that in this politically correct world, the use of language has become as much a political as a linguistic exercise. While not quite as bad as Orwell’s 1984, there are certain aspects that come damn close, and often the attitude and intent are entirely in keeping with it. This post is about the words terror and terrorist.
Reading about much of the mad violence that has taken place, you may well hunt in vain – except in Israel’s own media coverage – for those words. People are decapitated, run down, blown up, tortured, butchered, and killed. But that is rarely described as terror, and the actors are not terrorists.
Occasionally, you might see these words encased in quotation marks. This stylistic exercise is carried out to convey a clear message: someone else said this, and we certainly don’t agree, because we would never use such a word.
The BBC are on the most influential media outlets on the planet, and (very regrettably) they seem to be leading the charge (to mix a metaphor or two) in sanitizing terror from their reports on such incidents.
However, over at the excellent BBC Watch, they have a post that highlights how the BBC does actually use these words, and their hypocrisy when it comes to using terror and terrorist.
That post explains the BBC’s public stance on the use of these words. In short, they claim they are unable to make a value judgement, and so avoid doing so. However, as BBC Watch points out:
In other words, when it comes to terrorism in Europe the BBC apparently has no problem with “value judgements”.
So, apparently the BBC can make a value judgement if it wants to.
After reading the BBC Watch post, you might not unreasonably form the conclusion that so far as the BBC is concerned, terror is something that happens in Europe, but never in Israel, unless it comes to Jewish terror.. Strange that. On the other hand, after reading it, you might conclude that the BBC is a vengeful, hateful beast, ridden with antisemitism and a distaste for the Jewish State.