Shadow Foreign Secretary Emily Thornberry has retreated from pursuing concerns that BBC licence fee revenue may have been paid to al-Qaeda and ISIS linked jihadi group Ahrar al-Sham.
On 19 August I emailed Ms Thornberry observing that BBC reporter Ian Pannell and cameraman Darren Conway had apparently employed Ahrar al-Sham militants as security during the filming of the 2013 Panorama special Saving Syrias Children.
As noted in my recent presentation for Frome Stop War (from 15:18 below), Ahrar al-Sham was co-founded by one of Osama bin Ladens most trusted couriers, Mohamed Bahaiah. Bahaiah is suspected by Spanish investigators of delivering surveillance tapes of the World Trade Centre to al-Qaedas senior leadership in Afghanistan in 1998.
Less than three weeks before filming on Saving Syrias Children began Ahrar al-Sham were, along with ISIS and al-Qaeda affiliate Jabhat al-Nusra, among the key fundraisers, organizers, planners, and executors of attacks in which at least 190 civilians were killed and over 200 mostly women and children were kidnapped. The BBCs own news reports describe Ahrar al-Sham as a hardline Islamist group.
On 3 October Thornberry responded statin...