Rusbridger – Handmaiden to Power 125

Rusbridger’s Guardian has become an unrepentant unionist, zionist, and neo-con New Labour propaganda vehicle. Particularly deceitful is their attitude to the security services and the “war on terror”, where Rusbridger stands revealed as a handmaiden to power. He was, a very senior Guardian source told me, particularly upset when I described him as “Tony Blair’s catamite”. Let me say it again.

Let me give you a specific case to illustrate my point.

On 2 August the Guardian published a piece by Jamie Doward and Ian Cobain which, on the face of it, exposed the British Foreign Office for lobbying against the publication of the US Senate report on extraordinary rendition, lest details of British complicity become public.

On the face of it, a worthy piece of journalism exposing deeply shady government behaviour.

Except that I had published precisely the same story a full 15 weeks earlier, on April 14 2014, having been urgently contacted by a whistleblower.

What is more, immediately I heard from the whistleblower I made several urgent phone calls to Ian Cobain. He neither took nor returned my calls. I therefore left detailed messages, referring to the story which I had now published on my website.

In fact, the Guardian only published this story after William Hague had written to Reprieve to confirm that this lobbying had happened. In other words the Guardian published only after disclosure had been authorised by Government.

Furthermore, in publishing the government authorised story, the Guardian omitted the absolutely key point – that the purpose of the UK lobbying was to affect court cases under way and in prospect in the UK. Both in civil cases of compensation for victims, and in potential criminal cases for complicity in torture against Blair, Straw et al, British judges have (disgracefully) accepted the argument that evidence of the torture cannot be used because the American do not want it revealed, and may curtail future intelligence sharing. Obviously, if the Americans publish the material themselves, this defence falls.

As this defence is the major factor keeping Blair, Straw and numerous still senior civil servants out of the dock, this sparked the crucial British lobbying to suppress the Feinstein report – which has indeed succeeded in causing a huge amount of redaction by the White House.

My mole was absolutely adamant this was what was happening, and it is what I published. Yet Cobain in publishing the government authorised version does not refer to the impact on trials at all – despite the fact that this was 100% the subject of the letter from Reprieve to which Hague was replying, and that the letter from Reprieve mentioned me and my blog by name.

Instead of giving the true story, the government authorised version published by Cobain misdirects the entire subject towards Diego Garcia. The truth is that Diego Garcia is pretty incidental in the whole rendition story. On UK soil there was actually a great deal more done at Wick airport (yes, I do mean Wick, not Prestwick). That is something the government is still keeping tight closed, so don’t expect a mention from Cobain.

I was fooled by Cobain for a long time. What I now realise is that his role is to codify and render safe information which had already leaked. He packages it and sends it off in a useless direction – away from Blair and Straw in this instance. He rigorously excludes material which is too hot for the establishment to handle. The great trick is, that the Guardian persuades its loyal readers that it is keeping tabs on the security services when in fact it is sweeping up after them.

Which is a precise description of why the Guardian fell out with Assange and WikiLeaks.

I suppose I should expect no better of the newspaper which happily sent the extremely noble Sara Tisdall to prison, but we should have learnt a lot from Rusbridger’s agreement with the security services to smash the Snowden hard drives. The Guardian argues that other copies of the drives existed. That is scarcely the point. Would you participate in a book-burning because other copies of books exist? The Guardian never stands up to the security services or the establishment. It just wants you to believe that it does.

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125 thoughts on “Rusbridger – Handmaiden to Power

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  • Simon

    This is priceless information : who we are being persuaded by, and how they operate, in detail, with names and dates. Craig, you’re terrific. Just keep going.

  • Fedup

    Tons of food and some 15000 gallons of water air-dropped without chutes. So no, it didn’t have the desired effect.

    Keep an eye out for the videos of the drops it is keystonekops.

    For no parachute drops the aircraft must approach quiet low (feet off the deck) at a near stall speed and then drop from the aft ramp, as the videos show the height is quite high and the impact of the crates of water results in splash as the hungry and thirsty refugees run to find the impact site.

  • Mary

    There’s an amazing form of ‘democracy’ in existence in Iraq. A president appoints a new PM. Perhaps he could pop over here.

    Iraq PM Calls For Unity Against ‘Barbaric’ ISIS
    Displaced people from minority Yazidi sect, fleeing violence from forces loyal to Islamic State in Sinjar town, walk towards Syrian border, on outskirts of Sinjar mountain
    Iraq’s president names a new PM as the US confirms President Obama is arming Kurdish forces battling Islamist militants.

    Anything known on Haider al Abadi other than this?

  • Mary

    Ed Murray on Medialens is brilliant. This time to Frei, late of the BBC and now Ch4 News.

    Snowmail…Iraq “Alarming context”…short email to Matt Frei…
    Posted by Ed on August 11, 2014, 7:45 pm

    Mr Frei,
    In reference to your Snowmail tonight.(1)
    Regarding Iraq, you say:

    “Where next for Baghdad?
    Lindsey Hilsum, our international editor, will explain the alarming context in which all this has been unfolding…it is a terrible mess which everyone from Washington to London to Ankara is at a loss over how to solve.”

    Why do you expect Washington and London to “solve” the problems in Iraq after they are the prime movers in causing them? Will Hilsum, or you, be including any reference to the west’s culpability and responsibility in what is happening in Iraq today?
    Speaking of responsibility, someone ought to do a report on your own culpability. You acted as an echo chamber for both Washington and London at the time of the illegal invasion, bigging up the lying culprits while denigrating those who were a bit more sceptical.

    Matt Frei, BBC News, Wednesday, 29 January, 2003
    Girding the public for war
    “President George W Bush has laid out the moral case for a war against Iraq in one of the most powerful speeches he has ever given.
    …By repeatedly giving details of the weapons of mass destruction that Iraq possessed, and the nature of the regime, he was confronting head-on the issue of evidence that has been continually raised in the debate so far – although without presenting any new facts.
    These may come when the US lays out its full case against Iraq before the Security Council, with officials hinting that new intelligence data will be released.”

    Matt Frei, BBC1, 18:00 News, June 16, 2003
    “There may be a case for regime change in Iran, too. But for now the Bush administration is relying on change from within.”

    Matt Frei, Newsnight, BBC2, January 12, 2004
    On Paul O’Neill, who tried to inform the public about Bush’s plans:
    “If you remember, Paul O’Neill was sacked mainly because he was incompetent, and he was more infamous for his gaffes than his insights on economic theory. He once famously said that the collapse of the energy giant Enron was an example of the genius of capitalism, and perhaps more accurately that the tax code in America was 9,500 words of complete gibberish.”

    One could go on and on and on….
    Not surprising from a hack who called cold-blooded mass murderer Obama a “warrior president” and Hugo Chavez, the victim of a US sponsored coup, a “chubby-faced strongman.”

    Ed Murray.

    Where next for Baghdad?

    Lindsey Hilsum, our international editor, will explain the alarming context in which all this has been unfolding. In the capital Baghdad, the embattled Prime Minister Nouri al Maliki, who has been identified as the key problem in this increasingly sectarian bloodbath, refuses to relinquish power, even though just about everyone outside his Shiite power base wants him to. He has now deployed troops and tanks on the streets of Baghdad in defiance of the president, Fouad Massoum, who has the constitutional authority to remove him from the office to which he clings. Is it a coup? Is it another civil war in Baghdad? We don’t know yet. But it is a terrible mess which everyone from Washington to London to Ankara is at a loss over how to solve.

  • Peacewisher

    @Mary: At a future Nuremberg, I hope these journalists (and their editors)get their day in court to explain themselves… alongside Blair and Bush.

  • Peacewisher


    You could well be right about the post-war generation and journalism. But don’t you think education might have had something to do with it… and the fact that these people grew up prior to, and in the early days of, television.

  • Peacewisher

    Regarding the complete degeneration of the British media as serious news, it is interesting to reflect that this was a deliberate strategy in the US from the 1950s:

    No mention of this strategy crossing the Atlantic, but if it did happen – say in the Thatcher-Reagan era – that would explain a lot.


    re SARAH TISDALE. Would be interesting retrospectively to know what she makes of all the continued corrupt goings on. I extend my highest regards to for her honesty.

  • Fedup

    No mention of this strategy crossing the Atlantic, it did happen – say in the Thatcher-Reagan era

    You are a tad too optimistic, in the old USA there was a propensity towards more “transparency”, that is before the 9/11 (do you remember the patriot act, and the 9/11 mayor 9/11 Juliani 9/11 horrors on 9/11? ) after which the US went Nazi on steroids putting lill old Hity into shame, boy he would be spinning in his grave, that is if he had one.

    In UK we always have had an “understanding” Journos ignore what they are told to ignore, and write what the guide lines tells them, these guide lines could be set out in a little tel con, or in the pub, or even in the park, depending where their sis handlers arrange to meet them.

    So Mockingbird was really a bit of an old hat, UK was far ahead of the game then and it has since made huge gains too.

    Read Roderick Russell’s take on it all here. BTW he is not talking out of his hat, if you read other accounts of other people you will find uncanny similarities.

  • guano

    As Craig mentions there are legal cases related to victims of rendition abuse as well as to perpetrators of rendition abuse. The UK government way of dealing with the latter is well-known – big whitewash operations and losing the evidence.

    The UK government way of dealing with victims of rendition, torture and mind-indoctrination by psychotropic drugs is to place the finest, bent, establishment lawyers like Edward Fitzgerald at their disposal and then negotiate.

    Abdulhakim Belhadj got command of the Libyan joint USUSFranceIS destruction of Libya, etc and sued the UK government for one quid. The current round of destruction in Iraq is a quid pro quo to former servants of USUKIS who had been tortured there. David Cameron is conducting the genocide on the Yazidis and Christians in Kurdistan purely in order to let the UK government off the hook for the crimes previuously committed by the UK in Iraq.

    Only the most devious of brilliant bent lawyers like Edward Fitzgerald are capable of juggling all the balls in the air at the same time, batting on the side of the US, the UK, the victims, and the Kurdish torturers who are still in office, while drinking from a bottle of pepsi and eating a sandwich.

    It is not the leaders of the UK justice system who are rotten to the core, but from the roots to the top. The whole system is infested with paedophilies, and Zionists, and colonialists, and sadists, and apologists for the crimes committed by the Christian Crown against Muslim innocents all round the world.

    It’s not just Rusbridger but all the higher echelons of UK society, all shite.

  • Peacewisher


    You’ve misquoted me, just as Habby did a couple of days ago. Rather changes the meaning. Anyone would think you were both journalists… 🙂

    If what you say was really the case, how did people like Foot, Pilger, Duncan Campbell and their ilk ever get their views published?

  • Courtenay Barnett

    You said this:-
    “Courtenay @ 4;12
    this may be of interest to you Re new air strikes in Iraq –”
    And a friend of mine said this:-
    “Apparently ISIS is threatening their interest in the Kurds part of Iraq and that’s not permissible. As long as ISIS is killing their enemy then that’s fine but when it looks as if it is about to affect their interest then that’s not fine. Remember Sadam Hussein? When Iraq was at war with Iran it was an ally of the USA but when it threatened US interest then it is a bad guy and must be destroyed.

    The USA will only be sympathetic to humanitarian consideration if its interest are concerned. Just look at what is happening in Eastern Ukraine! Look at what happened in Gaza!

    The USA doesn’t have friends only interests!

    Those are my thoughts.”
    Between these two replies – by jove – I think I have got it.

  • Tom

    Absolutely. And this ‘packaging’ of difficult stories and misdirection is commonplace in the media. I’ve come to the conclusion in fact that most newspaper commentators are nothing more than stooges for the government or lobby groups. They very carefully maintain their cover by writing about other matters, pretending to be like you and me, but they are just much propagandists as the old Pravda scribes.

  • Fedup

    If what you say was really the case, how did people like Foot, Pilger, Duncan Campbell and their ilk ever get their views published?

    Are you British? (not being facetious, just asking)

    If you are not, then I can understand, but if you are then obviously you have not paid any attention to the trends. Although the “guidelines” were there, and the police state was in place (D notice) but as ever, British have a knack of dropping clangers that in turn yields the likes of Pilger (Australian), and Duncan Campbell (Scottish) whom were unknown entities and managed to interlope into the fold of Journos and then bypass the stealth tyranny of the editors to continue their work.

    However since those days, the trends towards efficiency and a constant vigilance of the blanket surveillance, have managed to bring about the demise of “investigative” stuff. Thus the paucity of the material, although it must be said that as yet there are many internet villains of the peace whom keep letting the proverbial cats out of the bag and these are not as easy to control but there are laws being drafted to get these to toe the line too. Although in the meanwhile there is internet filtering afoot, some twenty five percent of the internet sources are getting filtered.

    BTW kindly refrain from putting me in the same category of that demented “chosen troll”.

    I thank you in advance,

    Fedup says Boycott zionistan and all those firms that do business with it.

    See what you have done?

    Are you happy now?

  • Peacewisher

    Fedup… 🙂

    Of course I am. Maybe I was very, very naïve, but “the news” didn’t seem to become crudely biased until about the time of the Falklands War, and I was very proud to be part of what I thought was a democracy.

    I hadn’t even heard the word D-notice until I heard about that Scottish… oops, look what you nearly made me do.

  • Peacewisher


    I see that the US are now tooling up to get rid of the man they helped install and supported as leader in Iraq a few years ago…

    No change there then!

  • Eric Dodd

    You’re a tad late with your Guardian discovery Craig – those of us who used to frequent the ‘Comment is Free’ pages have known for years that the G is unashamedly Blairite/NuLabour, that it’s pro-union/anti-Yes (which it calls ‘Alex Salmond’) programme is controlled by two admitted Blairites – Kettles and White.
    It’s basically a ‘pretendy left wing liberal’ newspaper that’s every but as elitist as the Torygraph.
    Hell, it’s even re-published anti-Yes pieces from the Mail !

    Honesty ? It was a Guardian website story created by a couple of it’s ‘creatives’ that caused most of the rioting in London. They lifted a one-line anonymous tweet -‘teenage girl beaten to the ground by riot cops’- and sent it viral. People who took part in the rioting gave that non-story (it was fiction. It didn’t happen) as their reason for joining in.
    The G then had the cheek to commission one of it’s regulars to track down the origins of that story – three weeks after an honest BBC hack traced it to the Guardian !
    I stopped buying the G when I saw what it was doing to the Yes campaign, and stopped going anywhere near it when it became a Westminster-controlled mouthpiece.

  • Courtenay Barnett


    You said:-


    I see that the US are now tooling up to get rid of the man they helped install and supported as leader in Iraq a few years ago…”

    As with Saddam – support him as a US ally during the 8 year war with Iran; turn a blind eye to his gassing the Iranians; actually, sell him some of the gas; praise him for his enlightened approach to the education of women – then when he steps out of bomb, kill and decimate.

    So – Malaki – now do the dance as with Saddam – now the tune is over.

  • Peacewisher

    Yes, precisely. Thing is, they don’t seem to have a clue what to do next. Perhaps that is their plan… to not have a plan. And another million Iraqis will bite the dust.

    Alternatively… the Sunni & Shia Iraqis will wise up to the last 30 years or so of outside manipulation… and unite as a nation to kick the Western intruders out. The Kurds will form their own country, which will be friendly to the West and supply them with oil, like Kuwait. That would be a “best case” for peace, but the West would have to eat humble pie…

  • Jives

    Fedup and Peacewisher,

    Interesting posts above.

    There’s another school of thought that reckons in a mediascape where the Establishment have total control they occassionally permit a “limited hangout” scenario for some specially selected “journalists” and narratives if only to foster the illusion of democracy and press freedom.

    There are also those who would swear that that The Grauniad *allowing* the spooks in to destroy their hard drives re:Snowden was less a story than a charade The Grauniad were in on and thereby we,the people,are shown how powerless we really are.

    Funny,too,perhaps,how The Grauniad turned on Assange after being his bestest bestest buddy whilst he was passing them the leaked cables.

    Possibly :.)

  • Peacewisher

    @Jives: Yes, this is an interesting thread, and thanks to The Guardian for further eroding their already battered credibility. Regarding the hard drives, I can’t understand why they didn’t think of copying the data before allowing the hardware to get smashed… (!)

    Here’s my best case scenario: govt/media decided they have to gang together to allow the wider public to think govt are in control of the matter and “move along, nothing to see”. Maybe they are right, and those of us who try to join the dots are the problem. Maybe subduing the public with TV and mobile phones helps stop them wanting to join the dots. However, maybe they are a bit clueless though and they do need a bit of external input now and then 🙂

  • Courtenay Barnett


    Above post related to your post:-

    “. Thing is, they don’t seem to have a clue what to do next. Perhaps that is their plan… to not have a plan. And another million Iraqis will bite the dust.”

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