Experts: The Promise deliberately demonises Israel

By Marcus Dysch, March 3, 2011
Unbelievable: Erin (right) wanders around Hebron on her own

Unbelievable: Erin (right) wanders around Hebron on her own

The Zionist Federation has led a barrage of complaints to Channel 4 over its drama series, The Promise, which ended on Sunday. Letters of complaint were also sent by the Board of Deputies and the Israeli Embassy in London.

Channel 4 confirmed it had received more than 200 "comments" from viewers but a spokeswoman said: "Well over half were appreciative."

The Israeli Embassy said it had received more complaints than over any other programme shown in years.

Jonathan Hoffman, ZF co-vice chair, said: "Even though this was a drama and not a documentary, many viewers would have taken it as historic fact. Channel 4 has an obligation to at least attempt to be balanced and accurate.

"The overall combination, selection and ordering of the events was deliberately anti-Israel and the series clearly set out to demonise Israel."

The Board expressed "grave concerns at historic inaccuracies" with one member angry that "the damage has been done".

Director Peter Kosminsky told the Channel 4 website: "Feelings run very high and no matter how carefully one attempts to tread, it is obviously impossible to please everyone all the time.

"I've tried as hard as I can not to suggest there are any easy answers to such a complex problem. There are no good guys and bad guys in this sad situation and we have tried very hard to show pluses and minuses on both sides."

A Channel 4 spokeswoman said: "The Promise is a fascinating and moving drama that we always hoped would get people talking and debating. We welcome the vigorous online discussion. The overwhelming response online has been positive."

Last updated: 10:06am, April 27 2011