The one that got away

campbell.jpgI will conclude as I began, with a piece on another hack and political sycophant, but one with a very distinct difference. This one is complicit in the 2003 mass murder of Iraqis, aka the Gulf War. Are you getting warm? His wife is also a journalist. Warmer? There yet? No? Okay, it’s Alastair Campbell.

Why him, why now? It’s just that this is the third anniversary of the massacre in Iraq - not that one needs an excuse to say hello to Mr Campbell, or a peg on which to hang a story about him.

As the former Downing Street communications director and chief PR whip, he presided over the thieving, cutting and pasting of the renown “dodgy dossier” on which the war that saved civilisation was predicated; the self-same dossier that served as the grounding on which then-US secretary of state Colin Powell based his pro-mass murder pitch to the UN General Assembly.

He is truly the one that got away. He may have been employed in the British back office of the killing machine, but I truly believe that his relatively nominal lowly position in the murderous chain has seemingly served to obscure his massive input into the massacre that came to be described as the Gulf “War”. This was the point man that oversaw the manufacture of the bogus evidence, the 45-minutes-to-kingdon-come stuff.

If there was any justice in this world of ours, he would be right up there with Bush, Blair, Cheney, Romsfeld and the rest of the mass-murderous mob. But, as luck would have it, he was not even a minister - but he was allowed to wield so much power.

Consequently, one would have thought that many media people, who you would expect to be more discerning, would have got the measure of the man and would be giving this avid WMD-spotter a wide berth. But far from it.

This cad and bounder, this apologist for mass murder who is so economical with the truth that he manufactures his own in a parallel, make-believe universe, is now a media star. Unbelievable, to say the least. The nationals are falling over each other to commission articles from him, and there is even talk of him hosting a current affairs programme on TV. Channel 5 even invited him to edit one of their news bulletins!

Streuth! as the antipodeans would say! This is a character I detest even more than I do Bush-Blair - for the very simple reason that, as a left-of-centre journalist, as is yours truly, he should have known better.

And, to cap it all, several publishers are falling over each other to buy the memoirs he is reportedly writing. Shame on him and shame on them! One only hopes that during their get-togethers they would offer a toast to the Iraqis that have been killed as a consequence of Campbell’s dodgy dossier.

It would seem that the media establishment in Britain are awed by this character. Is it because of his reputation as a bit of a bruiser, having duffed-up a few colleagues in his time as a reporter? Or are they mesmerised because of his proximity to the seat of British power? All we know is that he is, at best, an apologist for mass murder. He should be tried, along with his principals. Fat chance, I hear you saying. Damn right!