Blogroll Me! How This Old Brit Sees It ...: John Pilger - The People's Media Hero - On-line And Off-line ...

06 June 2006

John Pilger - The People's Media Hero - On-line And Off-line ...

Here's a face we're fairly certain few Americans will recognise.

And that's certainly a sorry state of affairs. Really, it is.

World famous, multi award winning investigative journalist, awesome author and independent film maker par excellence that this amazing Australian is, he's hardly ever heard of in the United States.

And that sure is some sad loss.

And the fact that it's almost impossible for our pal Pilger to have any of his works published, read, viewed, aired and/or distributed in America, ain't no accident. Not by a long chalk.

Mr Pilger simply scares some governments shitless, especially those with dirty and blood stained linen they'd rather remained hidden from general public view -- particularly from their own down-home public.

In case you hadn't heard, John Pilger is the briliiant and brave man who found out for himself first hand, then broke the appalling story to the horrified world at large, about the infamous 'Killing Fields'.

Several similarly super-shocking stories have been sent down the wires since, by the self same man. A genuinely magnificent media hero of our troubled times if ever there was one. And you'd better believe it.

How or why else would he have found his way onto our own blogroll-links bar from day one, if this wasn't truly the case?

Pilger's the man permanently prepared to put his life on the line in many more ways than one, to shout out loud & clear what so many other so called foreign correspondents wouldn't dare dream of even whispering.

In his own field, he's the creme de la creme. Hence, so many different country's cretinous governments can't cope with all which Pilger works at making common knowledge.

So it's not surprising he's pretty well unheard of stateside of the Atlantic. And that's such a crying shame -- if not a downright, straight off, sodding sin.

Getting the gist yet, of This Old Brit's Pilger blogpost?

Whatever -- get a load of this -- from last weekend's Guardian.

Voice of the unpeople

Mark Curtis is awed by journalist John Pilger and his novel Freedom Next Time

Saturday June 3, 2006
The Guardian
Freedom Next Time - by John Pilger

John Pilger is a very unusual journalist. He writes about people on the receiving end of grisly western policies - whether bombs or economic "advice" - and then exposes the motivations of those who are responsible. One might think Pilger is just doing his job.

In fact, it is an indictment of western journalism that this way of working is rather unusual and Pilger unique.
See what we were saying?

Here's another tasty teaser.
A secret document drawn up by British planners in 1968 was called "maintaining the fiction", and argued (knowing it was untrue) that the islanders were not permanent inhabitants.

The author, one Anthony Ivall Aust, then a legal adviser to the Foreign Office, was subsequently awarded a CMG in the Queen's birthday honours.

The story is a good indication of mainstream British political culture - buried in the mainstream media, the perpetrators of crimes against foreign unpeople shower honours on themselves while the US is appeased.

Yet "maintaining the fiction" also nicely describes Whitehall's current stance in the Middle East, where the official story is that Britain is an "honest broker" between Israel and Palestine.

The reality is that Britain has provided more than £70m in military equipment to Israel in the past five years, acts as Israel's chief defender in the EU ...
And as for the US ...
In some of Pilger's other interviews, such as those with Bush administration officials John Bolton and Douglas Feith, the absurdity of modern imperialism stands out.

Bolton was described by Senator Jesse Helms as "the kind of man with whom I would want to stand at Armageddon"; Feith, meanwhile, after his fall from the Pentagon, was described by General Tommy Franks, the US commander in Iraq, as "the fucking stupidest guy on the face of the earth".
Okay, now that we've got you going, go read the rest right here.

And be sure to bookmark Pilger's own web place -- then be equally sure to read him regularly.

You'll regret it if you forget it. You can bet the fabled farm on that.

Last but not least, try to treat yourself to Pilger's latest block-busting book, and find out - maybe for the first time - a few hidden home truths.*



Anonymous Griffon said...

I remember some years ago, Paul Keating, Australia's Labor Prime Minister, threatened to sue John Pilger regarding an uncomfortable truth he had come out with in regard to his dealings with Indonesia. The informed here were rolling around laughing. Pilger would have wiped the floor with him in court.

Keating was famous for being nominated previously by the world's banking elite as "Treasurer of the Year" and who subsequently sold out any chance of Australia having economic sovereignty by selling our government owned Commonwealth Bank. Oh if only he had been stupid enough to carry through with his threat.

You are right Richard. John Pilger is universally hated by politicians here in Oz as elsewhere.

What is that line from Orwell? "Speaking the truth in a time of universal deceit is a revolutionary act" or something like that. Here's to the Revolution of Truth.

1:28 am  
Anonymous gordo said...

When Pilger was interviewed on ABC, he had this to say:

"John Pilger: …we've always depended on resistances to get rid of occupiers, to get rid of invaders.

And what we have in Iraq now is I suppose the equivalent of a kind of Vichy Government being set up. And a resistance is always atrocious, it's always bloody. It always involves terrorism.

You can imagine if Australia was occupied by the Japanese during the Second World War the kind of resistance there would have been, and so on. We've seen that all over the world.

Now, I think the situation in Iraq is so dire that unless the United States is defeated there that we're likely to see an attack on Iran, we're likely to see an attack on North Korea and all the way down the road it could be even an attack on China within a decade, so I think what happens in Iraq now is incredibly important.

Tony Jones: You mean defeated militarily?

John Pilger: Yes.

Tony Jones: Can you approve in that context the killing of American, British or Australian troops who are in the occupying forces?

John Pilger: Well yes, they're legitimate targets. They're illegally occupying a country. And I would have thought from an Iraqi's point of view they are legitimate targets. They have to be, sure."

Nobody bothered to argue the point he made; his opponents simply charged that his comments amounted to sedition. The truth of what he said was regarded as irrelevant.

A lot of Australians loudly called for expansion of the sedition laws, so that Pilger might be prosecuted.

But in the US, we don't need sedition laws to stifle the likes of Pilger. Our mainstream outlets are quite good at keeping the truth away from the public eye without help from the government.

3:45 am  
Anonymous gordo said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

3:45 am  
Anonymous bluey said...

Pilger is priceless. He's a national treasure. No, more than that, he's an international treasure.

8:36 am  
Blogger markfromireland said...

If you're part of the occupation then you are a legitimate target. That includes if you're a civil servant btw so if you're for example a bureaucrat from the US Agriculture Dept and you're in Iraq then you too are a legitimate target. Ditto "contractors."

People who target Iraqi civilians are another matter altogether - that's terrorism.

Pointing out these simple facts of law tends however to get one into trouble.

4:19 pm  
Anonymous Rex said...

When is someone here going to say something I can't agree with? I'll be getting myself a reputation as a dittohead soon.

Seriously though folks, coming here proves to me what I've always believed -- we are all part of the whole.

It's just that some of the world's neanderthals haven't yet realised that.

5:49 pm  
Anonymous kiwi said...

It's all been said. So I'll second it all.

12:57 am  
Anonymous Rosemary said...


I had a collection of recent links to Pilger's work, including an audio tape that contains excerpts from his Diego Garcia movie. I could not get into Blogger to put them here, so I posted them in the "Blog Thread" at TAPA.

These links all actually connect to American sources, but of course not mainstream and also not in the chattering class of bloggers. Honestly, there really ARE some other resources in the U.S. -- not many and hard to find, but they ARE there.

btw I certainly thank you for introducing me to Pilger's work some time ago. (and Fisk's and Margolis's)!

3:21 am  
Anonymous Rosemary said...

Hmmm... I wasn't meaning to call you on your characterization of the quality of information available to us. I am afraid it sounds like that's what I was doing.

I really thought you might like to have those links for your own library of resources. Do with them whatever you like.

3:28 am  
Blogger markfromireland said...

Blogger seems to be back up Richard. Comments are (sort of) working on Gorilla's Guides. But I've had it with the increasing flakiness of this platform and have brought forward my plans to migrate "guides" to something a bit more reliabe.

8:26 am  
Blogger Richard said...

Mark, thanks for the heads up. It's been driving me crazy for days. I'll try to make a proper blogpost later today.

Rosemary, thanks. I got those links at Tapa and responded there. And don't worry about me taking you the wrong way - I've known you for far too long to do that.

Griffon, Gordo, Bluey, Rex, and kiwi - than you all too. If only there were more like Pilger - and more like ourselves. Eh?

Also, as many of you may already have realised, Blogger has been buggered for days - hence the inactivity here and elsewhere. Twice earlier in the week I lost a lot of work, but as it seems to be back to normal now [God knows for how long though] bloody blogger permitting, I'll have a new post up later today.

11:48 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

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7:04 pm  

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