The BBC is insisting that it is not simply offering up a puff piece on Shamima Begum, and will look at her critically, but the very fact that this series exists demonstrates the BBC’s intention: to make British people think positively of Shamima Begum, and get her back into the country. Consider, for comparison’s sake, the fact that the BBC wouldn’t be caught dead featuring a foe of jihad terror in a 10-part podcast or in any sort of treatment at all except an attack piece full of critical quotes from Leftist jihad enablers and Islamic supremacists.
Skeptical? When I was banned from the country for opposing jihad violence and Sharia oppression of women, I happened to be working very early one morning and I saw the BBC announce on Twitter that it was going to have a show in an hour, about 3AM Pacific time, discussing whether or not I should be banned from the country. They had not, of course, invited me to participate in the discussion or made any attempt to contact me at all. When I tweaked them for this on Twitter, however, they were embarrassed, and ended up inviting me on. So in the middle of the night, sleepless and without a preparation, I got my one and only chance to defend myself in the British media, and only got that because I caught the BBC out and called them on it publicly. A portion of the show is in the audio file below; listen to see how the imam the BBC had on to discuss what a terrible fellow I am was completely unable to answer the points I made about the Qur’an.
Anyway, the contrast should be clear. The BBC loves Shamima Begum and is doing everything it can for her. But those who oppose jihad terror the BBC doesn’t love so much.
“‘I’m just so much more than ISIS’: BBC sparks outrage for ‘giving terrorists a platform’ as Shamima Begum lands 10-part podcast to ‘retrace her journey’ as she tells how she left the UK and ‘packed chocolate because she couldn’t find it in Syria,’” by Matt Powell, MailOnline, January 11, 2023:
The BBC was criticised today for ‘giving terrorists a platform’ after Shamima Begum landed a 10-part podcast to ‘retrace her journey’.
The 23-year-old, who packed mint chocolate for the trip to Syria to join the brutal death cult, says ‘I’m just so much more than ISIS’.
Critics accused the BBC of ‘wasting licence fee payers’ money’ and said the families of ISIS victims would be ‘mortified’. Wasiq Wasiq, a fellow at the Henry Jackson Society, tweeted: ‘While the victims of grooming gangs are still trying to be heard and get justice, Shamima Begum manages to land 10-part podcast on the BBC.’
The BBC said the podcast would provide Ms Begum’s ‘full account’ of ‘what really happened’ when she disappeared from London in 2015 to become a jihadi bride. But it insisted her story would not be ‘unchallenged’, describing the podcast as a ‘robust, public interest investigation’.
In 2015, a 15-year-old Begum and her school friends Kadiza Sultana, also 15, and Amira Abase, 16, fled their east London homes to join IS.
Begum, now 23, was found in a refugee camp in 2019 and soon after the UK withdrew her citizenship and banned her from entering Britain.
She now lives at the al-Roj camp in northern Syria, run by the Syrian Democratic Forces, which she described as ‘worse than a prison’.
The BBC Sounds podcast follows an investigative journalist who has been talking to Begum for a year and it gives ‘her full account of what really happened after she disappeared’.
In the first episode, journalist Josh Baker meets Begum in the Syrian detention camp to discover how she joined ISIS and eventually ended up stranded.
She told him being stuck in a camp ‘is, I feel, worse than a prison I think because at least with prison sentences you know that there will be an end but here you don’t know if there’s going to be an end.’
Begum told the BBC she accepts she joined a terror group, but on the topic of public anger aimed at her says: ‘I don’t think it’s actually towards me. I think it’s towards ISIS.
‘When they think of ISIS they think of me because I’ve been put on the media so much but what was there to obsess over?
‘We went to ISIS, that was it. It was over, it was over and done with.’
Begum also details her journey to Syria, and how she was given detailed instructions by IS members.
But she also researched information herself including looking for IS members online to help her and her friends plan their journey….