The Telegraph today published a series of documents including letters said to have been sent between former prime ministers Tony Blair and Gordon Brown, revealing what the newspaper called “the extraordinary rift at the heart of Labour”.
The cache of documents show for the first time Mr Brown’s feelings towards Mr Blair in his own words and handwriting, material which has previously only been the subject of speculation and second-hand reports from anonymous sources.
Look I’m not going to deny to you there weren’t tensions, there weren’t arguments. It was hard during that period … But the allegation there was a plot, that there was nastiness, brutality, is just not true. It’s not justified either by the documents themselves or by what was actually happening at the time.
The Cabinet Office has since confirmed it is looking at whether the particular set of papers was in the possession of any government department, and only then would it look at whether a breach had occurred. Following this announcement the Guardian reports that education secretary Michael Gove said he was “confident his office will be cleared”.
This time there’s a competition element too: readers are asked to trawl through relevant documents and make comments and annotations. Featured contributions will be credited and readers will have the chance to win an origial cartoon by Steve Bell (deadline is 6 December).
The First Post has published an article from ‘Newspeak in the 21st Century’ by David Edwards and David Cromwell (editors of the UK-based website Media Lens). The BBC is not impartial, independent, nor even particularly truthful, they argue. An extract from the extract:
“[B]y what right does the BBC airbrush from reality the swath of informed public opinion that sees the invasion as a crime, rather than as a mistake? By what right does it declare this framing of the topic ‘impartial’, ‘balanced’, ‘objective’ reporting?
“While working as the BBC’s political editor, Andrew Marr, declared: “When I joined the BBC, my Organs of Opinion were formally removed.”
“And yet, as Baghdad fell to American tanks, Marr, reporting on the News at Ten on April 9, 2003, said of Tony Blair: “He said that they would be able to take Baghdad without a bloodbath, and that in the end the Iraqis would be celebrating. And on both of those points he has been proved conclusively right. And it would be entirely ungracious, even for his critics, not to acknowledge that tonight he stands as a larger man and a stronger prime minister as a result.””