Anorak News | Live From Bethlehem With The BBC’s Biased Nativity

Live From Bethlehem With The BBC’s Biased Nativity

by | 24th, December 2008

WE GO LIVE to Bethlehem with the BBC correspondent Aleem Maqbool as he walks from Nazareth to Bethlehem, retracing a journey made by Joseph and Mary in the Christmas story.

Maqbool is undecided if he wants to be Joseph (walking) or Mary (seated).

But his is a modern version, and Maqbool, being from the BBC, sees the Israeli checkpoints, not one Church, a mosque and meets one Simon Lowe from Safe Haven for Donkeys in the Holy Land. Says Maqbool:

Dour, they may be, but their natural humility, mixed with the occasional spirited bout of stubbornness (usually, I thought, brought on with good reason), I found to be pretty admirable.

No, not the locals: the donkeys. Maqbool has not one donkey but a fleet of them, playing a game of Bible polo.

Al-Bireh, just north of Ramallah, where I sipped my Turkish coffee, is where it is believed there was a caravan stop at the time of Mary and Joseph’s nativity journey.

It is also thought to be where, on a trip 12 years later, according to the Bible, the couple realised they had accidentally left Jesus behind in Jerusalem.

Yeah, this really is the Beeb’s modern take on the nativity. Mary is now Karen Matthews, leaving her kiddies alone in the city. Today the social services would have popped round to Mary’s stable for a chat and the scribes at the Daily Mail told of her living on handouts and being a slack mother.

Woman With One Child by TWO different Fathers Arrested! For shame!

An evening out in any number of fancy restaurants or bars hypnotises the wealthiest of Ramallah’s residents into thinking that all is well in the world.

Woman With One Child by TWO Different Fathers Drinking Shame!

Mary and Joseph then stops at his “favourite hummus restaurant in the suburb of Beit Hanina”.

And on he goes in a politicised report on the nativity that would make Santa’s suit blush. There are Israeli checkpoints and “orangic” Palestinian settlements; an Arab handing out Christmas trees and a Jew called Batya banging on about it being her land. Says Maqbool of the message:

Every country around the world, except for Israel, considers settlements like Batya’s illegal

There’s an armed Jewish “settler” approaching; and a small Palestinian boy scampering around.

And there’s Maqbool, neither Mary nor Joseph, in Bethlehem, pregnant with expectation but delivering nothing much at all…


Posted: 24th, December 2008 | In: Reviews Comments (2) | TrackBack | Permalink