An Extremely Boring Video. Do Not Watch It. 502


I have managed to get hold of a copy, which you can see here, of my lengthy interview with Sky News about the Skripals yesterday, which Sky refused to put online because they allege I was boring. With the warning you might therefore be very bored, you may watch it if you wish.

Kay Burley then appeared to suggest in reply to persistent questioning from Teymoor Nabili that Sky News could not put the interview online as they did not record it and do not hold a copy, which is plainly untrue (and would be illegal under their broadcast license).

My perspective on the interview itself was that the interviewer became aggressive and sarcastic, increasingly shrill as the apparent effort to discredit me was not going well, and resorting eventually to asking about any old extraneous matter but the Skripals. I strongly suspect it was not me being boring, but the strange performance by Kay Burley, which motivated Sky to bury the interview.

But you must judge for yourself.

It is my policy when invited by journalists, to give considered and courteous answers to the particular questions which they ask. This is as opposed to what politicians do, which is to spout pre-prepared soundbites irrespective of what they are asked.

I appreciate that mine is a very old-fashioned approach, and may lead you to be frustrated about areas I did not cover. I also make no attempt to look slick or sound glib. I realise in this modern age that may not be good PR, but my belief remains that in the long term people will see me as a polite and thoughtful old gentleman, and feel less disposed to share the obvious contempt towards me of the media and politician classes.


502 thoughts on “An Extremely Boring Video. Do Not Watch It.

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  • Strategist

    Well done Craig. Kay Burley does not come well out of this. The one thing that unites Sky, BBC, Guardian, all of them, is that they react extremely badly to criticism. It’s an ego thing.
    They are also utterly paranoid about losing their control over the information flow. That’s a systematic thing.

    • Shatnersrug

      Journalist have never been criticised the way they are now, and they don’t like it. They manly have messiah complexes and to discover that you’re unliked and moreover not believed isn’t going down too well.

      • Ultraviolet

        I posted something on the Graun today which feels apt here:

        I’m beginning to think we are witnessing the death throes of the mainstream media.

        First was the Scottish referendum. Whilst the English did not much care, the Scots saw blatant lies about what was happening during the campaign.

        Then came the Labour leadership election and its aftermath. People on the right and those who are more apolitical didn’t much care. But the politically active left saw lie after lie, smear after smear.

        During the election last year, when the less politically minded tune in to politics, many of them came to realise that Corbyn was not what their papers had been telling them.

        But things have really accelerated this year. Huge swathes of North London, engaged in a local fight to stop a local authority scheme that they thought would be deeply damaging to their communities, were astounded to see themselves branded as “Momentum thugs” staging a “coup”.

        The anti-semitism smears might have done some damage to Labour initially, but even by the end of last week, most people were beginning to think that it was being massively overblown. And then when over Easter Corbyn was attacked for spending Passover with “the wrong kind of Jew”, the whole story jumped the shark – and yet still the MSM continued with it, and are even trying to revive it again today.

        And now there is Salisbury. It was bad enough when the MSM was asking people to swallow a fairy story that was collasping under the weight of its own internal contradictions. Commenters on not just the Guardian and the Independent but even the Daily Mail were treating the news stories on the subject with the contempt they so richly deserved. Yet anyone who refused to swallow the official line was branded a traitor. That is the tool of tyrannies, not democracies.

        But now we see probably the worst thing of the lot, the thing I think history will show as the pivotal moment. Everyone can see that Johnson blatantly lied on German television. Everyone can see that the Foreign Office is trying to cover up the lies by deleting tweets where the lies were repeated, and doctoring speech transcripts. And far from calling out this utter corruption at the heart of our Government, every single mainstream media outlet is helping in the cover-up. The BBC even went as far as to lie about the German TV interview.

        This has gone beyond mere mistrust of the MSM. There is growing anger at the way we are being lied to.

        We can but hope that that anger will only be demonstrated through the ballot box.

        • EAJ

          Excellent comment. I, for one, am bloody livid! How DARE Theresa May and Boris Johnson show us up like this in front of the world? If ever there was a false flag, THIS IS IT!

        • Crackerjack

          Excellent post but I think the Guardian is as involved in the lies as any other sadly. Its not the paper it was. Its a transatlantic neo-liberal dog turd and Viner/vintner? is responsible IMV. It all went tits up after Snowden

          • Shatnersrug

            I think by commentators Ultraviolet means your average below the line punter commentator, not the cowardly pathetic imbeciles that work for the Guardian, who are in it up to there necks.

            I have said for a long time I think the Tories are dying, however when they go they will take the whole country with them.

          • Crackerjack

            Fair one Shatnersrug. I just cant resist kicking those fuckers every time I can. Sadly I remember them well.

          • Ultraviolet

            Shatnersrug is entirely right. I did mean those commenting BTL, not the paid ATL commentators. I have had nothing but contempt for the Guardian for some time. Its overkill on the anti-Semitism rubbish has generated in me a hatred for it that I didn’t previously have.

  • Sharp Ears

    Not that harpie Kay Burley! You have my sympathy. She is self delusional and believes she is very important.

  • Caratacus

    A ribbon – for your hair? Why gild the lily, Miss Burley? If I may refer our younger readers to Soft Cell of some years ago: Cruelty Without Beauty.

  • Jenny-louise McLaughlin

    Why can’t people accept honesty? Brainwashed by force-fed media? thank you for posting.

  • durak

    She comes across as petulant and arrogant with the gravitas of an elephant.

    One wonders why she acts so unprofessionally.

    • Black Joan

      I agree. I think her shrill performance may be one reason for this failure to broadcast. Craig is calm, patient and dignified and that appears to be unacceptable, so he must be challenged with frequent and increasingly shrill interruptions. The format is weird and unsettling, too — Craig on a huge screen and the interviewer pacing around in front.

      • ZiggyM

        I suspect Mr. Murray will have been in situations and confronted by people a little bit more ‘Heavyweight’ in all kinds of ways, than the Burley

    • Strangerthings

      Hasn’t she been there since the dawn of time? So she’s outlasted everyone else, so has been allowed to throw her weight around.

  • Chris Wright

    Dear Mr Murray, as an international wire journalist I do hope ou won’t tar all of us with the ‘corporate lickspittle’ brush. I find your blog rather illuminating. I have yet to watch the interview ith Sky.

    • james

      dear chris – it’s very hard for ordinary people like i not to tar all journalists with the corporate lickspittle’ brush… almost all journalists working the msm appear as conformists.. there is nothing wrong with being a conformist, but it doesn’t make for proper coverage where a diversity of views on any one event need to be considered… with the skripal case – all the coverage is one sided.. when news comes out that runs counter to the official way it was presented a month or so ago – the msm relegate the news to some back page… why is this? it is hard not to view journalists as working for a corporate agenda that doesn’t really care about being objective, so much as peddling a particular angle… people are seeing thru this… the framing of russia for this that and the other thing is cause for people to not believe a word out of the msm’s mouth… if you are a stenographer for them, so be it… i wish you luck in your work!

  • Sariade Gawain

    Congrats! You’ve joined the same club as Jordan Peterson (See Channel 4 interview with Cathy Newman). Keep being courteously truthful. It drives the talking heads barmy.

    • wendy

      they both came out of that badly. peterson is bit of a ‘fraud’ and we know newman is too after her falsified mosque claims.

  • Sarge

    The only dissenting voice amid Sky”s 24/7 groupthink is the one they decide isn’t interesting enough. Not even for their website.

  • Barden Gridge

    08:00-08:25 ends with KB saying “Dunno is the answer”.
    Such a gracious manner she has.
    Repeatedly refers to “strains of Novichok” then has the nerve to say “I don’t know if you know much about television”.
    God, she’s thick.

    • Ultraviolet

      The only time I have seen Kay Burley is when she interviewed Cameron during the 2015 election.

      I have never seen such a ghastly, fawning excuse for a piece of political journalism. I felt physically sick.

  • Courtenay Barnett

    Craig,
    On the next occasion:-

    1. Get a hat – really bright coloured hat.
    2. Put colours on your face like a clown.
    3. Smile a lot.
    4. Sway your head from side to side as you speak.
    5. Gesticulate a lot.
    6. Laugh when there is no joke.
    All put together and acted out properly – you will get tremendous attention.
    Now – stop being boring.

  • Morton Subotnick

    The MSM are extremely touchy about any accusation that they have physically manipulated an interview because it is so easy to prove one way or the other if one has access to either the original broadcast or one makes one’s own copy (as Tony Benn used to do religiously). Hence KB’s concentration on that point to the exclusion of almost all else.

    Ideological manipulation, however, is the bread and butter of the MSM, is far more subtle and cannot be proven in an interview the length of which any MSM outlet is willing to provide. In fact, it usually comes in book or documentary film length. At which point, I am again going to recommend Noam Chomsky’s Manufacturing Consent: The Political Economy of the Mass Media (1988) (https://www.amazon.co.uk/Manufacturing-Consent-Political-Economy-Media/dp/0099533111/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1522928402&sr=1-1&keywords=Manufacturing+Consent%3A+The+Political+Economy+of+the+Mass+Media) and the ‘film version’ Manufacturing Consent – Noam Chomsky and the Media (1992) (https://www.amazon.co.uk/Manufacturing-Consent-Noam-Chomsky-Media/dp/B001IO151K/ref=sr_1_1?s=dvd&ie=UTF8&qid=1522928505&sr=1-1&keywords=Manufacturing+Consent+-+Noam+Chomsky+and+the+Media).

      • j

        “Those of a Leftist persuasion may prefer to hold their noses while accessing these ‘portals’.”

        An odd claim.

        • Morton Subotnick

          The Internet Archive is technically incompetent, increasingly dealing in pirated and copyrighted material and a hive of liberal snowflakes – I cancelled my donations when the “Donald Trump Is A Fascist”-type begging emails started arriving. YouTube is part of the Alphabet stable, again a liberal snowflake wonderland.

          What’s wrong with liberal snowflakery, you ask? Their hypocrisy, their abhorrence of free speech, their contempt for the manual working class…just read the Guardian every day.

          To understand what is really going on in the political arena today, read the excellent article ‘The Return of the Repressed’ by Wolfgang Streeck in the March/April issue of New Left Review (https://newleftreview.org/II/104/wolfgang-streeck-the-return-of-the-repressed).

  • Eric Blair

    A ribbon for her hair. She is Molly from ‘Animal Farm’ and I claim my £5. Thanks.

  • Christian A.Wittke

    Thank you Mr Murray,
    My Prussian grandfather told me in detail about how propaganda led the Germans into their desaster; we seem to see obviously a more modern but less intelligent version in today‘s Media mainstream.

    • Peter N

      Have to admit George gets his points across and shows the interviewer that he knows exactly what she is trying to do. His regular RT show https://www.rt.com/shows/sputnik is always worth a watch, he’s actually a good interviewer in his own right. (Still can’t understand why he is so against independence for Scotland though, seems to me a character flaw there.)

      Above said, I don’t think Craig could manage George’s approach — too big a character difference.

      • Courtenay Barnett

        Peter N,

        Craig Murray is/was a diplomat with that training.

        He is indeed not George Galloway. The temperamental disposition is quite contrasting between the two men.

        It is one thing to fire quick counter punches ( Galloway style); quite another to listen politely then deal with replies patiently and quite calmly ( Murray at work). But – both effective coming from different psychological predispositions.

    • Jiusito

      I did enjoy that blast of Galloway! But in his own way Craig was just as impressive. Very well done.

  • Paul Lynch

    I’d say it was pulled by SKY because Kay Burley’s slip was patently showing.

    • Sharp Ears

      The Sky presenters all come from the same mould. Right wing.

      Even those who effect good humour and bonhomie are reactionary when they are so instructed by their editors. Today an intelligent young woman (Irish I think and from a charity) was interviewed about the Right to Return protests ongoing in Gaza. Four more Palestinians were killed by the IDFF today and hundreds wounded.it was obvious she knew Gaza intimatel. She described the living conditions, the shortages of food, water and electricity, the 11 year long siege and the fact that 2 million people are living in a area the size of the Isle of Wight.

      Throughout, the presenter, Tom MacLeod, interrupted and pressured her to blame Hamas for engineering the protests and to agree that they were violent. she refused to do so on several occasions. She kept going and said her piece. Just before, he had had an Israeli government spokesman who was allowed to spout the most awful slander of Hamas and the Palestinians in Gaza. There were no challenges from MacLeod.

  • Weechid

    And this is why I won’t have a TV. What an obnoxious creature that woman is. Why would you want to pay to have someone like her invade your living room. Well done for your calm and measured response Craig. I can see why you were a diplomat:-)

      • BeaMedi

        Nor I. Sitting through a Newsnight interview at 15, where Yvgeny Gissin (might not be the spelling) explained carefully, unchallenged, to viewers, the basic differences between Palestinians and other human beings, started that ball rolling.

  • Jm

    Burley is woeful and very rude.

    Like a shrill petulant 6 year old not getting the birthday present she thought she would.

    Well done Craig,in stark contrast you maintained a calm and dignified manner.

  • Chris Wright

    Having watched the interview, I think it passes muster on both sides. I find the answers sufficiently coherent, informative in so far as they can be, and interesting. I also I find I have general sympathy with the interviewer pushing for clarification over the edit. All of us journalists have to edit and sometimes that means the chronology of quotes, for example, changes if a later quote logically belongs with an earlier one, for example. I don’t have a problem with that. The Skripal issue is immensely complex and the government is perhaps guilty of jumping to premature, pre-ordained conclusions. Mr Murray appears as a left-field voice in this and, with his professional experience, has a perfect right to and I appreciate input which for some reason has been absent from many mainstream media. Perhaps Deutsche Welle TV can put him round a table with Boris. I’d pay to watch that 🙂 Bonne continuation, as my colleagues say.

    • The OneEyedBuddha

      “I also I find I have general sympathy with the interviewer pushing for clarification over the edit.”

      Even if it wasn’t done to try and reenforce points they felt wasn’t presented strongly or clearly as they wanted, it was very clumsy and poorly done.

      Don’t want people to criticize, then do it better!

    • wendy

      the purpose for wanting to ‘clarify the edit’ was solely to undermine craigs narrative as ‘conspiracy’ without stating it overtly.

      craigs point was that the final comments were out of sync and had no context to the final question. that is it was tacked on the end to make a political point to fit the govt agenda.

      the question to ask is why was that answer used out of the 35 other answers since it didnt offer any insight just supposition

  • Mr L Jones

    You are a scholar and a Gentleman, Sir, posessed, in abundance, of that quality so lacking in the MSM and Political sphere today, namely, Integrity.

  • Someone

    That behaviour is unbecoming of a civilized person. That lady is clearly no journalist, but some sort of “opinion maker”. What a shame.

  • Alex

    Good grief.
    No wonder they didn’t put it on line.
    She’s rude, petulant, defensive and patronizing. Your patience did you credit.
    Perhaps the hair ribbon would be more usefully utilized as a gag.
    Keep on keeping on, sir.

  • Paul Hunter

    Kay Burley was definitely hostile. Defensive.

    Also, being a reasonable person in today’s climate is boring. Give me boring any day!

  • Christoph Jensen

    Thanks Craig, old-fashioned or not, you are an amazing individual full of integrity (probably an old -fashioned virtue). Keep up the good works and do not succumb to resignation … you are appreciated.

  • Steven

    Great heavy camera… NONSENSE! I work in TV. Technology has moved on a bit from the 1960s.

  • g

    Kay is either naive or she knows she is lying she needs to remember she is helping to form tomorrow’s world that her grandchildren will live

  • Martin

    Craig,

    You were not boring at all! You were composed, factual, and answered with facts, which the MSM cannot tolerate. The problem was, you didn’t fit the narrative, so pat yourself on the back for that.

    Kay Burley’s ingnorance is only surpassed by her arrogance and demonstrable incompetence in this interview. It reminds me of the calm Jordan Peterson taking apart Cathy Newman on Channel 4.

    • CanSpeccy

      [Mod: Apologies – we think you posted an incorrect link the first time and replied to it with the correct link. In deleting your first link the second one was made inaccessible to readers. Our bad, but please remember that replying to a comment that is likely to be deleted means that your reply cannot be seen when the delete happens.]

      I thought it was rather boring. But a conversation with a moron is almost certain to be boring and that woman sure is dumb.

      Concerning what happened, I had what I thought was quite a theory and posted a link in a comment here on Craig’s blog but it never passed the censor, which makes me just a little less sympathetic with Craig than I might otherwise have been, over Sky not putting his interview on line.

      Amazingly, when I put the same link in a comment on Craig’s article about the Novichok affair over at Unz.com, not only did my comment disappear, by Craig’s article with it. My theory is evidently dynamite.

    • Chris G

      ‘Not that interesting…. Sorry Buddy’, real journalistic gravitas shown there. Burley is a shallow, shrill waste of space.

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