I have found that the BBC is revered

BBC Bush House in London
Originally uploaded by Redvers Kyle.

Letter to the New Statesman this week.

According to Jonathan Freedland (Inside track, 28 May), Gordon Brown’s attitude to foreign policy is influenced by economics.

I wonder, therefore, if Brown will return to the BBC World Service the millions of pounds that have been taken from its budget by successive governments from Margaret Thatcher onwards. The World Service is a national asset, trusted by its overseas audiences.

I was in Syria when Israel bombed what it thought was a Palestinian terrorist training camp near Damascus. The Syrians I was with had been listening to a radio programme of Arab music on a channel broadcast by the US when the music was interrupted by a news flash. They changed immediately to the BBC, “to find out what was going on”. In Kuwait, Saudi Arabia and other parts, I have found that the BBC is revered.

If Brown wants to promote UK economic interests internationally, let him fund the World Service properly. It will be worthwhile.

Robert Hamilton
Troon, Ayrshire


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