We received complaints from some listeners who felt Martha Kearney incorrectly implied Israeli soldiers were killed on the same day as Palestinian activist Rachel Corrie.
Response from The World at One
We are sorry that in an item on The World at One on August 28th about the claim for damages brought by the family of Rachel Corrie we inadvertently gave a misleading impression.
The item included interviews with the father of Rachel Corrie and with Mark Regev, the spokesman for the Israeli Prime Minister.
Martha Kearney’s questioning was fair – she put to Mr Regev the view of a fellow activist that Rachel Corrie was 'in clear view' of the bulldozer driver and the opinion of Rachel Corrie's mother that the trial had not been fair.
Martha Kearney also said:
"Clearly Rachel Corrie was one of the casualties of what happened that day - and I know Israeli soldiers died too - but has this meant there’s a rethink of the policy of what was happening at that time - bulldozing Palestinian houses?”
By referring in her question to the deaths of Israeli soldiers, Martha Kearney was trying to keep the interview focussed on the central point of her question - the destruction of Palestinian homes rather than allow the interview to move on to the issue of wider violence.
She did not intend to imply that Israeli soldiers were killed on the same day as Rachel Corrie. Two Israeli soldiers were killed in the previous week. But we are sorry that the question was poorly phrased and therefore gave a false impression.