Mark Thompson said: "After consultation with senior news editors, we concluded that to broadcast a free-standing appeal, no matter how carefully couched, ran the risk of calling into question the public's confidence in the BBC's impartiality in its coverage of the story as a whole ...I've added the italics to show how weak the justification is. As the Guardian's Marina Hyde says, the BBC is "a bit jumpy" after the Ross/Brand affair:
"We will continue to broadcast news about the humanitarian crisis in Gaza and, if appropriate, to cover the work of the UK NGOs on the ground. We cannot, however, broadcast anything which we believe might compromise the impartiality of the BBC's journalism."
You will scarcely find an employee who will not speak of a risk-averse culture, with some judging it a worse paralysis than in the wake of the Hutton report.Which is saying something.