BBC’s “impartiality” complaint. Findings delayed until AFTER Blair’s appearance at the Iraq Inquiry

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    19th January 2011

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    BBC’s Iraq Inquiry coverage (and impartiality rules) under scrutiny – UPDATE

    TIMING IS EVERYTHING

    In my post last November I reported that the BBC Trust were considering a complaint that an interview with the BBC’s Laura Kuenssberg during coverage of Tony Blair’s last appearance at the Iraq inquiry had breached the BBC’s impartiality rules. This was because her erroneous version of Sir Christopher Meyer’s “signed in blood” testimony chimed with that of the anti-war lobby and because the interview was held against a backdrop of “BLiar” placards.

    The website publication of the BBC Trust’s findings was expected this week but I have just learnt that this has now been put back until Thursday of next week.

    Tony Blair is due to make his second appearance at the inquiry on Friday this week.

    Any connection between the delayed publication of a possibly embarrassing BBC Trust finding on this matter and the date of Tony Blair’s next appearance at the inquiry?

    As the Urquhart character in the House of Cards series put it “you might very well think that. But of course I couldn’t possibly comment”.

    __________

    RELATED

    BBC report with comments on Mr Blair’s last appearance at the Iraq Inquiry, 29th January, 2010. Here are two tweets and two comments – just for the flavour:

    • BBCLauraK tweets: Protesters outside can be heard in here – they claimed they were going to try to stop Blair leaving when day finishes at 5.
    • aincorby tweets: Is four-square behind Tony Blair. Leadership is never easy; we should support the judgement of our prime minister in international affairs.
    • I am getting tired of all the comments about ‘tame questioning’. Mr Blair has proved today that he should still be our prime minister. We are lucky that in the United Kingdom such a public enquiry as this can take place. Thatcher led us into an unnecessary Falklands war, one which Callaghan avoided on several occasions before her – she would not have dealt with this line of questioning and would not have attended.
    • He is a brave man and history will judge him as such, especially when our delay to make firm decision on the current Iran issue will come to haunt us.

    I remember 29th January well.  It was a drizzly London Friday.  I was there. In fact I was a witness (more or less) to the TRIAL of Tony Blair, aka the Iraq Inquiry.  And I will be there again this Friday.

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    Recent comments:

    “All countries need a leader who isn’t afraid to fight terrorism. I believe Mr. Blair did a necessary job in helping his allies. Are we all just supposed to lie down and wait for them to come for us, I don’t think so.”

    And – “Mr. Blair is one of the finest politicians to have had the privilege of serving the United Kingdom, and Britons are fortunate to have had him as their Prime Minister. Time will show that Mr. Blair’s approach to affairs in the Middle East were and remain correct. From a member of the Commonwealth, thank you, Mr. Blair, for your continued service to legitimate and lasting (and not convenient or politically expedient) freedom.”

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    One Response to “BBC’s “impartiality” complaint. Findings delayed until AFTER Blair’s appearance at the Iraq Inquiry”

    1. BBC’s sneering Paxman carpeted as “partial” by Helen Boaden, via Stan Rosenthal « The Feral Press Says:

      […] […]

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