Shame, Lies and Secrecy on Diego Garcia 93

Diego Garcia and the Chagos Islands remains a deep shame to the United Kingdom. In the 1960’s we forcibly deported an entire population a thousand miles, very much against their will, to make way for a United States air base. This is not an ancient evil; it continues to seep its poison into current actions, and the remnants of the deported population still linger in Mauritius, dreaming of home.

The Chagos outlines the stark hyprocrisy of UK policy on the Falklands. There we state the will of the islanders is paramount. In the Chagos, we state the will of the islanders is meaningless. Of course, the Falklanders are white-skinned, the Chagossians brown-skinned. That is the limit of the FCO’s attachment to self-determination as a principle. It is not for “Man Fridays”.

“Man Fridays”, according to the US Embassy Cable describing the briefing on Diego Garcia given them by FCO official Colin Roberts, is how Roberts referred to the inhabitants:

Roberts stated that, according to the HGM,s current thinking on a reserve, there would be “no human footprints” or “Man Fridays” on the BIOT’s uninhabited islands.

In the Diego Garcians’ latest attempt to get their home back, Roberts under cross-examination denied emphatically that he had used the term “Man Fridays”. It is difficult to see why the US diplomats who recorded his meeting with them used the term and put it in quotation marks, if Roberts did not use it. Roberts appears, on the face of it, to be potentially a perjurer in court. It was at this point the judges brilliantly resolved this issue by declaring the US Embassy cable ineligible in court on two grounds; firstly, its possession was a contravention of the UK’s official secrets act, as Roberts’ disclosure of the UK government’s duplicity was an official secret; secondly for it to be noticed by a court would contravene the Vienna Convention on the confidentiality of diplomatic communications.

This not only wiped out the problem of the apparent perjury by Colin Roberts; it collapsed the Chagos Islanders’ case that the US Embassy Cable clearly shows that the declaration of a Chagos Islands marine conservation area was merely a ruse to make it impossible for the inhabitants – who are artisan fishermen – to return:

He asserted that establishing a marine park would, in effect, put paid to resettlement claims of the archipelago’s former residents. Responding to Polcouns’ observation that the advocates of Chagossian resettlement continue to vigorously press their case, Roberts opined that the UK’s “environmental lobby is far more powerful than the Chagossians’ advocates.”

Of course, I knew at the time what the evil David Miliband was doing, and I blogged about it in May 2010:

Miliband has now produced what is one of the most cynical acts in the history of British foreign policy. Dressed up as an environmentalist move, and with support from a number of purblind environmentalists, the waters around the Chagos Archipelago have been declared the world’s largest marine reserve – in which all fishing is banned. The islanders, of course, are fishermen.

The sheer cynicism of this effort by Miliband to dress up genocide as environmentalism is simply breathtaking. If we were really cooncerned about the environment of Diego Garcia we would not have built a massive airbase and harbour on a fragile coral atoll and filled it with nuclear weapons.

The subsequent wikileaks release of the cable recording the US Embassy briefing by Colin Roberts – which shows just what an odious, immoral creep Colin Roberts is – confirms the truth at what I am saying. I am still very angry at the environmental organisations which allowed themselves to be used in this way; they were blinkered and stupid. There is nothing more dangerous than a good man with a monomania.

The Guardian rightly execrated the ludicrous court decision to pretend the wikileaked US cable did not exist. It rather undermines the famous legal maxim that “facts are stubborn things”. A truer maxim would be “Facts are things which vicious, authoritarian judges can make disappear when it benefits the government for them to do so”.

The implication that facts, no matter how true, can be ignored in court if the government did not wish those facts to emerge, is a major blow to the very possibility of whistleblowing. A judicial system where the court only considers government approved fact, is a cornerstone of fascism. What happened in that court was very serious indeed. Lord Justice Richards and Mr Justice Mitting are a disgrace to their profession, the compliant tools of a policy that should disgust all moral men.

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93 thoughts on “Shame, Lies and Secrecy on Diego Garcia

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  • kare karel (a conspiracy a day keeps idiocy away)


    my dear friend. I was concerned about principles or concepts of world domination as layed down in nineteenth century France. Whether someone later substituted in the text of the “Protocols” Jews for Napoleon or Eskimos is besides the point and pointing this out is just a deviation. To claim that the text of the Protocols was taken directly from Maurice Jolly is a fantasy as you will surely notice after having read it cf. As all those pamphlets were supposedly destroyed, we cannot be even sure about the authenticity of the above cited version and Jolly could have or most probably did copy something from the much longer text of the Protocols as henry Makoff suggests Who the hell knows which text is the older one and then what and where is the original that was supposedly forged??

    What Is so original about the protocols is that it offers a recipe for world domination. Whether it is a good recipe or not the time will tell. It is like cooking. Let us consider a hypothetical case where I may invent and develop a recipe for a dish. Let me call it the “The Rabbit of Zion”. The family enjoyed it, the friends who turned up for the dinner become extactic and tell me that the world should learn about that rabbit. Having persueded me to include it into a cookery book called “The hot owen”, I have it published. Some time later I get a threatening letter from a lawyers syndicate accusing me of forgery as my sentence “put the greased rabbit into a preheated owen” was word for word fetched from some other publication. Nice, Deek Jackson would say.

  • Dremel (the power tool)


    Reading through the PDF link you posted. Imperialism again? Common…

    Why don’t you find something that focuses on all powerful nations, throughout history?

    You ever read or study anything on international relations and conflict?

    You know in some ways you are a modern imperialist, or at least support it….

  • Dremel (the power tool)

    “And meanwhile Obama doesn’t have the guts to say that Guantanamo is downright wrong, morally, legally, every which way, except Guantánamo prison ‘not in the best interests of the American people’”

    Dreoilin, he inherited it. He tried to close it. There’s a super max in Colorado built, brand new, but unfortunately we have something called Congress, and there’s a big divide here, especially after the elections last year. The right wing has and is (since the Obama administration) made an issue out of everything it can. Really if you take a look at the blue vs. red states in the last election, people are becoming increasingly divided. I know, now your going to talk about the conditions there, how many there are innocent, etc. I agree, and the whole military tribunal thing is a mess. They should be tried in a US Federal Court, not with made up rules and procedures. This has been fought for, and the Supreme Court ruled they can file a writ, but it doesn’t go far enough. For the people too scared to let them into a US prison, and the fights that go on about this issue in Congress, those to the right can’t deny that any person brought to trial on terrorism charges in a US federal court has been convicted by the evidence, while providing them full representation and procedures that any US citizen has. While that might not be fair for you, it’s better than what they currently have at Getmo….

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