5 May 2010

Why I call them journo-pukes

'Hooray! Paddy socks it to the self-serving spooks' crows the endomorphic Andrew Gilligan in the Telegraph, apropos the ad hominem riposte of ex Liberal Democrat leader Paddy Ashdown, who once served in SIS, to criticism of his party's 'deviation from the cross-party consensus' on national security by, inter alia, ex-head of SIS Richard Dearlove.

'One of the minor mysteries of British political life', writes Gilligan, 'is the awe with which the pronouncements of the security services are often greeted – even though empirical experience clearly shows that those pronouncements are no more reliable, and quite often less, than in any other branch of the bureaucracy.'

One of the major mysteries about British journalism is how a little shit who put words in the mouth of a confidential source, and gave up that source's identity as soon as he was leant on, emerged from the disgraceful episode with his reputation enhanced and a job as the Telegraph's London editor.

I'm not sure whether the soaring career trajectory of Gilligan or that of the oleaginous Piers Stefan Pughe-Morgan, following his dismissal from the Daily Mirror on suspicion of insider trading and for publishing manifestly fake photographs of British troops mistreating Iraqi prisoners, more perfectly sums up why the British public rates the honesty and integrity of journalists well below the politicians they report on.

I know it is why I regard them as scum unless I have positive proof to the contrary.

But to return to Ashdown's alleged expertise: Dearlove was a key member of the extremely successful SIS attack on the Russian Intelligence Services, whereas I doubt if Ashdown even recruited an agent during his brief spell in the Firm. However, he could not have failed to learn enough about the trade to know very well that the humint on Saddam was as good as it gets.

The error lay in believing that Saddam was telling the truth to his innermost, Tikriti circle. Now, ask yourself: you have hard information that a psychopathic dictator, who has previously used chemical weapons in war and on his own people, and who has defied seventeen UN resolutions demanding that he permit verification, is boasting to his intimates that he has a secret biological warfare programme. Do you:
  1.  Assume that he is lying and risk a biological attack on a major western city?
  2. Take the bastard out on the ground that he is overdue in hell anyway?
Gilligan's great 'scoop' was to get CBW expert Dr David Kelly to agree that the dossier put together by Blair's spin doctor Alastair Campbell, himself a journo of the pukiest, had 'sexed up' the evidence. In fact Campbell was give the impossible task of justifying the invasion to parliament and public without even hinting at the nature and source of the intelligence on which the decision to invade was taken.

So, Gilligan was not only cowardly and unethical, but his biggest story was subsequently shown to have been based on a totally false premise. What better recommendation could there be for a British journalist? They hold everybody else to levels of consistency and accuracy that empirical evidence shows they do not even pretend to live up to themselves. 

1 comment:

  1. Another false premise of Gilligan's seems to be the unexamined assumption that England is only under siege from Islamists because of its military involvements in Iraq and Afghanistan.
    This totally ignores the 'Londonistan' factor whereby radically Islamist mullahs and agents and operatives found England the easiest place to hide, live, work and plot while they planned their various aggressions.

    As one of Gilligan's comments (Frank Fisher) puts it, the flawed 'cross-party consensus' had much more to do with immigration and multi-culturalism than it did with the judgments of those in the security services.