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Saturday 18 July 2015

Sun Royal Nazi Own Goal

The desperation of Rupe’s downmarket troops at the Super Soaraway Currant Bun knows no bounds, and nor does their fascination with Nazism, in which, to be fair, they are not the sole culprits in the Fourth Estate. But today’s front page attempt to smear the Royal family with the taint of 1930s Germany is so witless, so beyond barrel-scraping, and so crass as to make one wonder if those in the Baby Shard bunker are in touch with reality.
It is almost as if the editorial reins had been handed back to the appalling Kelvin McFilth, such is the lack of self-awareness in the headline “Secret 1933 film shows Edward VIII teaching this Nazi salute to the Queen … THEIR ROYAL HEILNESSES”. And, so what? Her Mum copied a gesture made by her Uncle, and so the then seven-year-old Princess Elizabeth copied her Mum. Kids aren’t likely to know the significance of it.

Come to think of it, Hitler had only just come to power in Germany at the time, and most people would have seen him only as a foreign bloke with a silly moustache who stuck his arm out at passing soldiers. The Führer was seen as a figure of fun as late at 1940, when Chaplin’s The Great Dictator was first released. Nobody would have accused him of doing anything but taking the piss out of Hitler.

There is certainly no mileage to be gained in suggesting that the Queen, or her parents, had any sympathy for the Third Reich: the Royals remained in London throughout the war, and the then Princess Elizabeth very publicly joined the armed forces at the age of 16. That the Duke of Windsor, as he had then become, had a soft spot for the Führer was well-known, but, again, so what? He’s been dead 43 years.

What, then, is the point of this “World Exclusive”, other than as a cheap and nasty attempt to use some grainy home movie footage from 82 years ago to flog a few more papers? The Sun have wheeled out Stig Abell to pretend that there is something useful in this stunt: he has claimed “We are not using it to suggest any impropriety on behalf of [the Royal family]”. So why run the story, other than to flog more papers?

Abell claims “it is an important and interesting issue, the extent to which the British aristocracy - notably Edward VIII, in this case - in the 1930s, were sympathetic towards fascism”. We know all about that. We’ve known about it for decades. It’s been discussed and analysed so much that it would be hard to find anyone out there who wanted to know about it, but somehow had missed the existing wall-to-wall coverage.

The Sun has made a monumental mistake with this splash. The only useful thing to come out of this appalling misjudgment is to show all those politicians and pundits who sympathise with the Murdoch press just who they all got into bed with. And the only surprise is that there are still people willing to do business with the Sun after so many Murdoch sources were betrayed by being shopped to the cops.

This will help the Sun in only one way: giving it an ever-more downward sales trajectory.


rob said...

It possibly could have been used as a spoiler for the important Exaronews aided event taking place this weekend in Australia on @60min?

What is more worrying is that the BBC fell for it hook line and sinker and made it their headline "news" this morning.

Will be interesting to see if they report on the @60min film.

From Twitter:

"Mark Watts ‏@MarkWatts_1 16h16 hours ago

Spies, MPs, police. All implicated in ‘Westminster paedophile network’. Explosive @60Mins. With a little help from @ExaroNews. On Sunday."

Given the connections revealed at the Leveson Inquiry between spies, police and MPs and the former NoTW it could ge very interesting indeed.

Ian Fryer said...

I can't help but wonder what form of words Cameron and co. will think up to defend Murdoch.

Anonymous said...

I think you're wrong Tim. For once the Sun is at least partly right. The film is definitely of historical interest even if the rubbish surrounding the picture is over the top.

Anonymous said...

Should be amusing to see how the two fat ladies at Fooks and co will play it should they manage to wobble into the office on Monday.

A acrid smokescreen and mirrors or a brazen rally for Uncle Ru.

When the reporter becomes the story........

Stanley Baldwin said...

Weren't right-wing halfwits trying to say, a few years ago when the BNP looked like they might get big, that fascism was left-wing and that Labour are a bit like the Third Reich now you come to think of it?

Now they're JUST SAYIN' that most pro-fascist people were in fact Tories. HURRAH FOR THE BLACKSHIRTS!