Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Don't touch it...

Blairwatch has the latest news on attempts to get the al Jazeera memo into the public domain. The memo has reared its head in a rare outing in the 'proper' media.

This saga doesn't reflect that badly on Blair; it portrays him as a restraining hand rather than a docile sidekick. The possibility that Blair is actually milking this for all it's worth has been raised by more than one cynical blogger. It's certainly something to consider.

Having thought about it, I'm not convinced. The media, for the most part, have been treating this story like an oversized chicken with a runny nose and a bit of a fever. They can see it, they might mention it on occassion, but they're not prepared to get too close to the potentially dangerous bird.

Behind this is, I think, an overwhelming desire not to contribute to the possible embarrassment of President Bush. To do so would be to risk inclusion in the mythical 'blacklist' of denied access journalism. By my reckoning, Newsnight are on that non-existent list.
Paxman: "Tonight, in an exclusive Newsnight interview, I'll be speaking to President George W. Bush. I'll be asking him whether the war in Iraq has failed and what it all means for the war on terror."
Won't be holding my breath for that one. But I digress.

The memo. It does appear to exist. Al Jazeera are trying to have it made public. Pressure is mounting on the government. The media needs to stop walking on eggshells.

Given that this memo is alleged to contain evidence of incitement to perpetrate an illegal act of violence against non-combatants, it is in the public interest that its contents be released. As I said, Blairwatch has the details.

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