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Donald Macintyre's response

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David Edwards
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Post Post subject: Donald Macintyre's response Reply with quote

Text of Macintyre’s response (Email, 21 July, 2010):

The Blair story, like another recent interview carried with similar prominence in the Independent, though at somewhat greater length, which I did in Gaza with the Hamas leader Mahmoud Zahar (the only one as far as I am aware carried by a UK newspaper since the May 31 flotilla raid) was for the news pages. In both cases I extracted what news I could on a story which was dynamic on several fronts, including the diplomatic. My office judged that a relatively strong statement by the Quartet’s senior diplomat on the need to lift the blockade in the wake of the killing of nine Turks aboard the Mavi Marmara, was of interest to readers. I have incidentally since raised pertinent questions about problems, potential and actual, arising from Israel’s subsequent announcement that it was easing the siege, in at least two prominent pieces.

You complain that I did not hold Mr Blair “to account” for his statement on Gilad Shalit, taking issue on the 11,000 Palestinian prisoners, or the prior arrest of the Muamar brothers. Apart from the fact that whatever other charges can be made against him, Blair did not actually detain the Palestinian prisoners; if I had turned the article—which I again stress was a diplomatic news story and not an opinion piece —into the protracted debate which you suggest on the justification or otherwise of the detention of Sgt Shalit, then I would simply have had no room for the developing story about Western attitudes to the siege. A parallel is actually afforded by the news interview with Dr Zahar. I also did not seek to engage him in print in a forensic debate on various remarks he made, including his assertion which I reported in some detail, that Israel and not Hamas had obstructed a prisoner exchange for Sgt Shalit. The reason was that I considered my job, as in the case of Blair, was to report his views, in the context of a fast moving story, without them being swallowed up, in a relatively short interview, by polemical argument with the reporter.

As it happens, I do not think that any Western correspondent has done more than I have, reporting on the ground since the beginning of the Israeli imposed siege in 2007, to draw attention to the deeply adverse effects of the blockade on the civilian population of Gaza. (If you doubt this I will furnish you a list of the relevant links.) But since you charge me specifically with having “ignored the consistent and massive military, financial and diplomatic support given to Israel during its increasing strangulation of Gaza……..” I would draw your attention to a 2000 word article written by me the day after the flotilla raid which focuses on international complicity with the siege.

Finally I note that a number of Media Lens supporters who have now written to me to complain about the article say they have hitherto been Independent readers. I am a little surprised, if they are so interested in Middle East affairs, that they have found themslves offended by the article only after publication of the Media Lens report. I am unclear why they did not react at the time. Indeed I am unaware of a single complaint about the piece before your denunciation.
Mon Aug 09, 2010 8:51 am
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Post Post subject: War Crime Reply with quote

"Et tu Brute?!"
"Liberal" journalists are as capable of obfuscation as their extremist peers but this is far more excusable because after all "mon frere" they are liberals!
B*llsh*t (FUBAR)!
Who are the criminals (in the U.K)?
"The Barbarians" Blair and Brown.
The only "Weapons of Mass Destruction" (and/or evidence of same) found in Iraq after "Iraqi Freedom" are the ones the coalition took there and used there.
The nuclear powers of the coalition have perpetrated "Nuclear War" on a virtually defenceless nation. Why? Because depleted uranium is cheap, oil is expensive and human lives are worthless!*
Please E.U set an example and prosecute them!

*To those who proselytise for Thanatos (see thread "For Welfare to Work" and others).

Note: The white man it seems is willing to put the black man on trial (re: Charles Taylor former president of Liberia), but not the white man..and that for (many would argue) worse crimes than those of the "Blood Diamond" racketeers.
Tue Aug 10, 2010 2:10 pm
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