“Illegal” Stroll Down Memory Lane 31


Many of the supporting documents giving evidence of the truth of Murder in Samarkand were removed from the book by my publisher after the government threatened to prosecute them. They were then posted to my original website, but many were taken down after the government threatened to prosecute me.

With retrospect that was an act of strange cowardice on my part, so I have decided to bring them back, one at a time. This first one is a fascinating treasure trove in which to dig. It is the document listing the changes the FCO demanded in Murder in Samarkand, (in addition to the removal of all government documents). The FCO consulted every individual named in the book who was, or ever had been, in government service, and checked all the files. The exercise took over a year. In almost every instance, my own opinion is that my original version was in fact correct. However almost all these changes were made in tbe book by the publisher.

You can see what I originally wrote in this document.

But the really interesting point is that the changes requested are actually very small, and very few indeed. This document is a testimony to the accuracy of my account, and to just what the government wanted kept secret, and why. In those very rare instances where my accuracy is disputed, I am afraid the explanation is that government officials are not telling the truth, for motives which are obvious.

The page numbers in this document refer to the manuscript and do not relate to the published book.

UPDATE

Some people are having difficulty finding the document. You have to click on the link below, then on the next page that will come up, click again on the link below the heading there. The document will then load, but takes (on my computer anyway) about 30 seconds to do so.

FCO_Comment-2


31 thoughts on ““Illegal” Stroll Down Memory Lane

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  • numberstation

    Very interesting view into the mindsight of the censors in Whitehall/Vauxhall etcetera Craig.

    On a side note I guess you like me have been browing the Cablegate archiven specifically those relating to Uzbekistan. I was pleased to see quite a few telgrams from the US Embassy in Tashkent signed by Jon PURNELL who seems to be writing telegrams much more in line with your original missives.

    SUNSHINE COALITION TRIALS – KHIDOYATOVA SENTENCED
    ‘Without an independent evaluation of the evidence, it is
    impossible to say whether there is any merit to the
    prosecution’s case. But it is fairly clear that, whether the
    defendants are guilty or innocent, they are being tried on
    the basis of their political opposition to the Karimov regime.
    PURNELL’
    -http://wikileaks.org/cable/2006/03/06TASHKENT427.html

    Other cables coming out of Tashkent here:

    http://wikileaks.org/origin/45_0.html

    Any thoughts on your sucessors on the UK & US front? David Moran & Jon Purnell?

    -numb3rstati0n-

  • craig Post author

    Purnell was a good man – later succeeded by a really nasty piece of work. My opinions on my UK successors are unpublishable.

  • mary

    Very good Craig. On days like this I start to think we can change the system if we make a stand together.
    .
    Someone else standing up against the state, this time against the state broadcaster.
    .
    He threatens to take legal action here against the BBC’s showing of the phony Indian Green Square footage.
    .

    http://bsnews.info/BBC_Correspondence.html

  • Paul Johnston

    @Woobus and of course Craig
    Anyway of finding a list of who DOES use Uzbek cotton, could be useful?

  • Clark

    I’ve submitted that file to Webcitation.org. They’re having technical difficulties at present, but it should become available on the following link eventually:
    .
    http://www.webcitation.org/61Xic38Dj
    .
    Part 3, pp152-155 – blatant, rampant islamophobia from John Herbst.
    .
    Herbst: “Yes, but most of those are Muslims.”
    Murray: “I’m sorry?”
    Herbst: “I mean, Muslim extremists…”
    .
    This is some 7000 people being discussed!
    .
    Herbst: “Look, Karimov’s got to keep a tight grip on the Muslims.”

  • Clark

    One thing that amazes me in the passage I quoted above is how people such as Herbst can think this way and not question themselves. Could they think the same thoughts but with every instance of “Muslims” changed to “Christians” or “Jews”? Islamophobia must be so widespread as to be regarded as the norm, or such bias would be seen for what it is and people like Herbst would not be employed in such positions.

  • John Goss

    Wow! The comments for removal or redraft are as revealing in their own way as the text they concern. The Research Analysts who were compromised by signing “up to the WMD dossier knowing it was ‘rubbish'” were “threatened with the end of their careers” and reduced to tears if they did not sign. Many of us at the time did not have access to the hyped-up MI6 document on WMDs but knew it to be a pack of lies based on the evidence of Hans Blix. There is nothing in your text suggesting that the Research Analysts were an arm of MI6, quite the contrary. They were forced to sign up to a document, concocted by MI6, which they knew to be false – or potentially lose their jobs. Everybody else knew it to be false, including Tony Blair and Jack Straw (who has no idea what MI6 is doing). It was a document which took us into an illegal war. The day before 1 million people marched on Hyde Park (with millions more showing their opposition Bush and Blair’s war) BBC news reported that there was a bomb-threat to London on the day of the rally. That disinformation did not come from FCO Research Analysts. And it did not stop anyone marching. If the general public knew that the WMDs’dossier was ‘rubbish’ it would be disrespectful to think Research Analysts could not come to the same conclusion.

  • Tom Welsh

    ‘One thing that amazes me in the passage I quoted above is how people such as Herbst can think this way and not question themselves. Could they think the same thoughts but with every instance of “Muslims” changed to “Christians” or “Jews”?’

    Ah but Clark – Islam is a *violent* religion! Quite unlike Judaism (if you have never read the Old Testament, or heard of Palestine) or Christianity (if you are entireely ignorant of history).

  • mary

    The Medialens editors post:
    WikiLeaks: Andrew Marr a “congenial and knowledgeable interviewer”
    Posted by The Editors on September 8, 2011, 1:12 pm
    .
    Wikileaks cable from the US Embassy in London to Hilary Clinton shows the extent of understanding between the BBC and politicians that ‘maximum impact’ will be offered for their time. The cable straightforwardly points out that an appearance on the Andrew Marr show may help to ‘set the political agenda for the nation’.
    .
    The understanding in the cable is that Andrew Marr is an obedient interviewer, who will not ask anything surprising or challenging, but rather help the message from the US become part of the ‘essential weekend viewing for Britain’. The excerpt from the cable is below.
    .
    On the public diplomacy side, I hope you can take some time out to tape an interview with leading British journalist Andrew Marr, to be broadcast on his Sunday morning BBC TV talk show. The program, which reaches 1.5 million live and millions more on the web, is essential weekend viewing for Britain, often setting the week’s news and political agenda for the nation. The program could be taped at your hotel, at my residence or at the BBC studios in West London. It would be a powerful way for you to set out our priorities for Afghanistan/Pakistan, and underline our premier partnership with the United Kingdom. Marr is a congenial and knowledgeable interviewer who will offer maximum impact for your investment of time.
    .
    The cable was sent from the London Embassy, entitled “SCENESETTER: YOUR VISIT TO LONDON JANUARY 27-29”, on the 25th January 2010.
    .
    http://www.newsunspun.org/blogpost/the-editors/wikileaks-us-embassy-discusses-use-of-andrew-marr-show-for-maximum-impact
    .
    The cable:
    .
    {http://wikileaks.org/cable/2010/01/10LONDON159.html}
    .
    How excruciating for Marr to read that he is considered ‘obedient’.

  • mary

    Thanks Clark. As that high resolution image slowly filled the screen, I cried. Poor man and thousands of others treated like him too.

  • John Goss

    The torture of Baha Mousa which led to his death should not stop at a few rogues. There is something fundamentally wrong at the highest level for an individual to be treated like this. Soldiering works in an order down manner not the other way round (it’s why soldiers obey orders that are morally wrong), with a perfunctory “Yes, Sir” they have learnt parrot-fashion. Those at the top should not be allowed to escape justice by blaming such torture on a “rogue element”. It does not wash.

  • mary

    Woobus Karimova is described as ‘The pampered daughter of the murderous dictator of Uzbekistan — a reviled tyrant who once boiled a political foe alive and has killed, tortured and enslaved thousands of his countrymen — will unveil her new line of spring creations during Fashion Week at Lincoln Center.’
    .
    The article continues ‘And human-rights advocates say Gulnara “GooGoosha” Karimova — a high ranking official in her father’s government once bluntly described by US diplomats as “the single most-hated person in the country” — should not be given the privilege of a prestigious Sept. 15 runway show given her complicity in her father Islam Karimov’s reign of terror. “There’s nothing fashionable about lending a high-profile platform to the senior official of one of the world’s most repressive governments,” fumed Steve Swerdlow, Uzbekistan researcher at Human Rights Watch.
    .
    She has no fashion sense as demonstrated here.
    .
    http://www.nypost.com/rw/nypost/2011/09/08/news/web_photos/fashion–300×450.jpg
    .
    Who will buy her trash? Do they know what she represents.

  • mary

    The saponaceous appearance of the author of the quote says is all.
    .
    ‘Big opportunities’ for private sector in health bill, says minister.
    http://www.pulsetoday.co.uk/newsarticle-content/-/article_display_list/12663018/big-opportunities-for-private-sector-in-health-bill-says-minister
    .
    07 Sep 2011
    The health bill will create ‘genuine opportunities’ for the private sector to take over large chunks of the NHS, the health minister in charge of steering the reform bill through the House of Lords claimed today.
    .
    Former banker Lord Howe told an audience of private sector providers that though the NHS ‘will not give up their patients easily’, there were opportunities for those wishing to ‘enter the fray’.
    .
    The parliamentary under-secretary of state for health was speaking as MPs prepared for a vote on the Health and Social Care Bill that would send it to the House of Lords where he will take charge of its progress.
    .
    /…..

  • Herbie

    “Bad apples”. Rogue elements”.
    .
    This is a common theme. It enables a plausible deniability for those at the top who set policy and targets.
    .
    You most commonly see it in military and policing matters, but it goes on everywhere.
    .
    The most recent big example was in the Murdoch hacking saga, where “rogue” reporters were made to take the rap.
    .
    I suppose the only interesting difference between the NI hacking and things like the Moussa murder etc is that the private sector has to buy off its “rogues” whereas the public sector just dumps them in it.

  • UNF

    “an act of strange cowardice on my part”

    one superfluous word in this snippet, a shrink would suspect ~ nevertheless, Mr Murray, reach around and clap yourself on the back one more time while repeating “I am an incredibly brave hero”

  • John Goss

    UNF, you are right, Craig is a brave man. Murder in Samarkand is a brave book. There is not a blog of his that I haven’t found well-argued and damn good reading – even when I haven’t fully agreed with the blog. Craig has no reason to reproach himself for allowing “government” censorship of a few minor exclusions. As he writes himself: “But the really interesting point is that the changes requested are actually very small, and very few indeed. This document is a testimony to the accuracy of my account, and to just what the government wanted kept secret, and why.” These are anything but the words of someone who should castigate himself for not having published a fully unexpurgated version.

  • Dave

    John Goss Seconded, I don’t always agree with Craig either, but essential reading!

    I see from the below link that it was nearly six years ago that I downloaded those docs.

    <a href= link

  • John Goss

    Dave. Fascinating link. You might be out of practice but I am out of touch. Can things actually be worse than what one thinks?

  • UNF

    John Goss, it would be naïve to think this example is the limit of Mr Murray’s toeing-the-line, tugging-the-forelock, hedging-his-bets and pulling-his-punches ~ you don’t get to be a Brit Ambassador in the first place without displaying the requisite innate talent for obeisance towards the corrupt pack of bastards in power, and the old habits die hard.

    By his own admission this marshmellow-Republican didn’t even have the guts to tell that dried-up old half-German shirker-bee he’d rather see her bloody head roll into a basket than accept her stinking, worthless gong ~ instead he cravenly blamed the Scots and accepted an equally worthless toast-rack from the British thief-in-chief, whom this loyal crawler obviously still considers to be his boss.

    But, by all means, do continue with this unhealthy hero-worship Mr Murray evidently craves, don’t let me put you off your ego-stroking.

    Just remember, go with the grain of the fur “;0))

  • John Goss

    UNF. Another thing has occurred to me from your last post – that your think I am some kind of toady, some kind of creep – even a sychopant. I can assure you I have never met Craig Murray in my life, though I have seen him on platforms at peace conventions, and admired his delivery – although I confess I prefer his written work, which gives more opportunity for deeper consideration.

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