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Wednesday 11 November 2009

Attack Dog Bites Man

If there was any doubt that the Murdoch flagship tabloid Sun was going to make things hard for Pa Broon, it has been dispelled by a characteristically nasty and exploitative piece of journalism over Brown’s hand written letter to the mother of a soldier killed on active service in Afghanistan.

Brown writes those letters in a black felt pen, because his eyesight is poor, which in turn leads to the effect looking untidy and scrawled. No checking is done by his staff, as he puts the letters in envelopes and seals them himself. This suggests it’s a very personal thing.

But the recipient wasn’t happy that Brown had made more than one spelling mistake – including, apparently, the dead man’s name – and so that very personal communication has appeared in the Sun. Along with the transcript of a phone call made by the PM to her.

The Sun line is that Brown doesn’t care enough about those being sent to fight, and sometimes to die, on our behalf in Afghanistan. But if he didn’t care, he wouldn’t bother with the personal letters, or he’d get them typed and just scribble a signature. For Sun hacks, this thought is not allowed to enter. They are under orders to kick Brown until they get him out of Downing Street, and Steve Bell has caught their attitude bluntly but accurately in this cartoon.

For Young Dave, this should prove instructive: it is an example of what may lie ahead if he fails to tear up the BBC’s charter, doesn’t take a suitably anti-EU line, or decides not to drop the TV impartiality rule.

Then Rupe will turn the attack dogs on him.

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