Reporting the Alex Salmond Trial 261


Imagine you had not seen the reporting of the Julian Assange hearing by myself or by any other citizen journalist. Imagine you had only seen the reports of the mainstream media. What impression would you have of that hearing solely from the MSM and how would it differ from the impression you have now?

Every fact I reported from the Assange hearing was just that, a fact. Nobody, anywhere, has made a single claim that anything I reported to have happened, did not happen. Yet the mainstream media simply did not report 99% of the facts of the case which I reported.

Then realise this. For all the key evidential parts of Alex Salmond’s trial, the public and citizen journalists will be excluded and only the MSM will be permitted to be there. How thorough, how accurate and how fair do you think MSM reporting of the case will be? The MSM hate Alex Salmond as a danger to the status quo, just as they hate Julian Assange.

At least for the Assange trial I could queue from 6am and get in with the public. The public will themselves be excluded from the Salmond evidence sessions. I went to the court on Thursday and was told not to queue on Monday as there will be no parts of the trial open to the public that day. I was told to queue from early Tuesday morning with the possibility of a brief admission to the courtroom for the public at some point on that day, by no means guaranteed.

I have therefore applied to be admitted to the trial as a journalist. This is the email I sent to the courts service. I apologise that circumstances compelled me to blow my own trumpet, but the application is quite true if embarrassingly immodest. I am indeed the most widely read journalist resident in Scotland. The fact my journalism does not reach its audience by the medium of dead trees, or by TV news broadcast to an ever-shrinking audience of gullible old people, does not change that.

CRAIG MURRAY
To: [email protected]

Thu, 5 Mar at 16:53

Sirs,

I am arguably the most read journalist resident in Scotland. We have undoubtedly the most popular and most read new media website in Scotland, http://www.craigmurray.org.uk.
Our regular readership is higher than the regular readership of the Scotsman or Herald, and on a good day higher than any Scottish newspaper. I have 75,000 followers on Twitter.

Last week our daily coverage of the Julian Assange hearing reached many millions of readers all around the world.

Your Man in the Public Gallery – Assange Hearing Day 1

Many hundreds of thousands followed the hearing on my own website, and in the English language the article was republished on hundreds of websites worldwide, as proven by a google search of an unique exact phrase from the article, which gives 869 returns
.
My Assange hearing articles last week were in addition translated and republished in languages including French, German, Spanish, Catalan, Portuguese (Iberian and Brazilian), Norwegian, Japanese and probably several others of which I do not know.

It is not just a question of quantity. This is reporting of the highest quality. My Assange case reporting was commended in the strongest terms by some of the UK’s most famous journalists, including Guardian editor Alan Rusbridger

former Daily Mail chief columnist Peter Oborne

And the legendary investigative journalist John Pilger

I would therefore be grateful if you would organise media accreditation for me to cover the Salmond case. In the modern world, the best journalists and those with the biggest audiences no longer work for the corporate or state media. Plainly, I am a journalist.

Craig Murray

The response to my email was of course to send me a form to fill, and that form made absolutely plain that it expected “journalists” to be from the established corporate and state media. Amusingly it also said the media organisation must have “balanced journalism”. That is of course another lie by the authorities. They have accredited the BBC, Sky and the Daily Telegraph, for example. They have not the slightest interest in balance, merely in excluding non right wing thinkers.

I have not heard back yet on my application. There is an irony that this blog might be regarded as a significant medium of publication for purposes of being threatened with jail for (ridiculous) alleged contempt of court, but not be regarded as a publication for the purposes of attending in court.

I still await a decision. If my accreditation is not accepted, my ability to report proceedings will be severely constrained. My strong suspicion is that being a good and accurate reporter with a wide international readership will appear to the authorities precisely the grounds on which they should try to exclude me. If excluded, I will provide what reporting I can, in any event, and gain entry at least to that part where the public are admitted, while finding ways to report what I cannot directly witness: I already know a great deal more than I am permitted to tell you about the facts of the case.

——————————————

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261 thoughts on “Reporting the Alex Salmond Trial

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  • Linz

    The media have always referred to complainers as victims though they have changed their tune somewhat lately. The use of the word victim presumes guilt.

    • Martinned

      Well, it presumes someone’s guilt. Not necessarily the accused, though. (And not necessarily legal – as opposed to moral – guilt.)

      • J

        The implied intent to which you subscribe is a specialised reading and not remotely similar to common inference, as you know perfectly well.

        You’ve already suggested Craig’s writing and journalism lacks balance. As if the might of the establishment leaning on the scales of justice represented balance. In our present condition balance requires considerable counterweight, if justice is to be achieved. I don’t recall an occasion where you did not lean with the might of establishment and yet you criticise Craig for attempting the necessary counterweight.

  • Robyn

    Sorry for being off topic and repetitive, but Christine Assange’s gofundme for, ‘raising money to fund a hand-picked, highly professional and experienced media and diplomatic team in Australia’ is moving very slowly and is still way short of her target. Decent publicity about Julian’s plight is certainly needed in Australia – the MSM are virtually silent on his plight, there are still many Australians who believe the lies about him, and nearly all MPs are ignoring him altogether.

    Anyone interested and able can donate at: https://www.gofundme.com/f/save-my-son-julian

  • Los

    FIrst they came for the Journalists.

    I suspect Johnson’s current inactivity on Coronavirus is a deliberate attempt to make the crisis far worse than it otherwise might be in order to seek to emergency executive powers like they’ve declared in Italy overnight.

    Presumably Donald ‘Il Duce’ Duck will be planning the same.

    • J

      That sounds about right.*

      Does anyone imagine they aren’t capable? After watching these people destroy entire countries for beliefs and rewards alien to me, while culling hundreds of thousands of their own people (essentially as an aside to relieving their entire class of gambling debts, it was never necessary) I think it strange not to imagine t

      *But if, as appears to be the case, COVID turns out to be a fairly standard flu epidemic, rather than the more deadly flu epidemics previous generations saw, considerably more ‘Public Relations’ or ‘News’ might be required before we reach the point where actual real people are ‘clamouring for martial law.’

  • Nelson

    If Murray was prosecuted for voicing contempt, there are dozens of commentators on here, and elsewhere, who would also have to be prosecuted for attempting to influence the jury. As such, it would be a farce. People aren’t allowed to comment BTL on on-going court cases in newspapers for very good reasons. I suggest Craig Murray does the same.

  • Natalie

    “If I had done that I should not have hesitated to say that I had seen the painters”, answered Raskolnikoff, to whom this conversation seemed particularly objectionable.

    “Why then make statements prejudicial to one’s cause?”
    “Because only moujiks and pigheaded fellows deny everything as a foregone conclusion. A prisoner with the least possible intelligence
    acknowledges, as far as he can, every material fact, the reality of which it would be idle for him to try and annul; only he accounts for it in another way, he modifies its purport, he exhibits it in a different light. According to all probability Porphrius calculated that I should answer in this strain. He believed that, in order to give a greater show of probability to my statements, I should confess to having seen the journeymen, without, however, doing so in a way unfavorable to my case.”

    — Crime and Punishment, Fyodor Dostoyevsky

  • Mary

    Mark Curtis refers to Julian here –

    ‘The UN’s special rapporteur on torture, Nils Melzer, recently wrote to the UK government calling for officials to be investigated for possible “criminal conduct” in their stance towards WikiLeaks publisher Julian Assange, who, he has repeatedly said, is being subjected to “psychological torture” by the UK. Melzer added that UK policy “severely undermines the credibility of [its] commitment to the prohibition of torture … as well as to the rule of law more generally”.

    No UK press outlet has covered Melzer’s assertion of possible UK criminal activity.’

    Also to Edward Snowden.

    https://www.dailymaverick.co.za/article/2020-03-09-how-the-uk-press-is-misinforming-the-public-about-britains-role-in-the-world-part-one/

  • Royd

    A passing thought only – I’m not sure Alan Rusbridger’s comments are at all flattering but the rest certainly are. 🙂

  • Rigg Robertson

    I tend not to observe the “coverage” of the trial because there will probably be a distinct lack of “dis” As the accused spent more of his life at Westminster than Holyrood it would be reasonable to consider that there would be some incidents there but not even a sniff let alone a charge. The period strangely also excludes time in opposition at Holyrood and for 6 years post Holyrood again not a jot. It leaves the distinct impression that this trial is more Hollywood than Holyrood

  • Brian

    Any group of powerful people will erect rules to protect them selves.
    Those rules are sometimes called laws.
    What is important is not the law but the force of the law. That is what can be enforced.
    The Kings were doing a bit too much enforcing to which the barons objected.
    The vast majority of laws are never enforced. Those few laws that are enforced are done so on a very arbitrary and often random basis. Sometimes an individual is singled out and reasons found that they have broken a law.
    The courts and judges often ignore the written law that is much open to interpretation. The jury are only supposed to judge on the evidence presented to them. What evidence is not presented is decided beforehand.
    The Jury are carefully not informed that they can object if they feel a trial is not being conducted fairly.
    The court is the perfect place for injustice. If a person is brought to trial there is an opportunity for injustice that would not exist if they had not been brought to trial.

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