Paintball for Terrorists? BBC Paid for Islamic Radicals' Amusement
If you thought media bias was bad in this country, flip around the international channels on your cable/satellite box and you'll see it could be much worse:
The BBC funded a paintballing trip for men later accused of Islamic terrorism and didn't pass on information about the 21/7 bombers to police, a court heard yesterday.
The organisation gave Mohammed Hamid, an Islamic preacher accused of radicalising British Muslims, a £300 fee and paid for fellow defendants to go and be filmed for a documentary.
After the botched July attacks Hamid told a BBC reporter he had worked with on the programme 'Don't Panic, I'm Islamic' that he knew the identities of the culprits - but she felt 'no obligation' to tell police, the court heard.
The journalist informed her boss and the information was passed on up to senior executives but a decision was taken not to pass it on.
The claims emerged during the trial of Mr Hamid who, along with four others, is accused of running a two-year radicalisation programme to groom London Muslims for jihad.
The court was told Mr Hamid was first approached by BBC researcher Nasreen Suleaman in late 2004 when she was making a documentary before the July 2005 attacks.
It was shown on June 12, 2005 on BBC2.
The BBC paid for Hamid, fellow defendants Mohammed Al Figari and Mousa Brown and others to go on a paintballing trip at the Delta Force centre in Tonbridge, Kent, in February 2005.
The court was told that July 21 bombers Ramzi Mohammed and Hussein Osman also went on a trip to the same centre before the 7/7 attacks. Ms Suleaman said she was unaware that they were on the trip.
Sick stuff. Makes you wonder how many New York Times editors would act if they were in a similar situation.