We have been following he saga of Robert Kilroy-Silk, former MP and morning talk show host on the BBC, who has been criticized and suspended from his show for writing a newspaper editorial called “We Owe the Arabs Nothing.”
After expressing “regret” over the matter, he is now defending himself:
- BBC presenter Robert Kilroy-Silk has argued that he has a right to say “there are Arab states that are evil, despotic and treat women abominably”.
In interviews with Sunday papers he also said he was “disappointed” the BBC suspended his TV show, after an article he wrote led to accusations of racism.
….The former Labour MP told the Sunday Telegraph he had the right to criticise despotic Middle Eastern regimes.
….Mr Kilroy-Silk also claimed his secretary mistakenly sent the column to the Sunday Express instead of one on foreigners using the NHS, as he had planned.
He said the article, which was originally published during the Iraq War in April of last year, had not caused offence at the time and was intended as a criticism of certain Arab regimes, and not Arab people.
Mr Kilroy-Silk said: “I clearly do not believe that all Arabs are suicide bombers etc. That would be stupid.
“As we all know most Arabs are educated, civilised and urbane.”
….Mr Kilroy-Silk, whose BBC One show is suspended while an inquiry is carried out, has told friends the corporation is “wobbling and wimpish”, according to the Sunday Times.
….The presenter told this week’s Sunday Express: “I’m disappointed that the BBC didn’t feel able to support me.
“I said to it that I understand its need to say that the column is nothing to do with it and the views are nothing to do with it, but my impartiality on the programme has never been a problem.” [BBC]
I’m not sure who the BBC thinks it’s protecting by suspending Kilroy-Silk’s show, and this crap about an “investigation” is just buying time until they figure out what they really want to do. None of the facts of the matter are in dispute – what is there to “investigate”? Surely in a free society anyone can write an editorial criticizing the regime of any other country, which Kilroy-Silk now claims he was doing. It’s too bad he wasn’t more clear about that in the original piece.