Few who were there will forget the testimony of the twinkle-toed yet domestically combative Rebekah Brooks during the Hacking Trial. She was calm, assured, just a little vulnerable, couldn’t possibly have been expected to know every last detail about what was going on at her paper, and she didn’t do it, right? But there was also an empathy, an ability to realise what tabloid intrusion could do to others.
And it was all an act, a magnificent yet calculating exercise in method acting that would have left Marlon Brando in the dirt. Ms Brooks was, and is, in it primarily for Herself Personally Now, and woe betide anyone who believes otherwise. We know this as the sheer unpleasantness of her papers’ attacks on a vulnerable and unwell man have been exposed - a vicious episode which she could, and should, have stopped.
At one point in her evidence before the Hacking Trial, as Nick Davies related at the time, “She told the jury about some of the stories that had helped her career. She had befriended the England footballer Paul Gascoigne after he broke his leg in the FA Cup final in 1991. As a result, in July 1994, he had agreed to give her an interview about incidents of domestic violence in his marriage. The paper had paid him between £50,000 and £80,000 for doing so. ‘It's a good story,’ she said, ‘but also it's a way of highlighting these issues’”.
Rebekah was Gazza’s friend. Or rather, she was only his friend until the Super Soaraway Currant Bun wanted to score a few more sales. We know this as the paper has - with her acquiescence - had a tail put on Gazza, with a snapper waiting outside his apartment ready to record his frail and unsteady state for all those eager Sun readers.
So we were treated to “Paul Gascoigne new low as he exposes himself in the street on the hunt for more booze … The footie idols [sic] was seen stumbling in a dressing gown to buy gin and fags before accidentally flashing passers-by”, although the photos that showed the “exposure”, and had to be pixellated, have since been quietly taken down.
Some “friend” Rebekah is now, eh? But it gets worse - a lot worse: Gascoigne’s sister Lindsay has laid bare the Sun’s recent appalling behaviour on social media, and it makes for grim reading, not that Rebekah will give a crap about it.
Here’s what she said: “Not many people know this but the Sun reporters not only laugh and mock my family but they buy bottles of alcohol and leave them outside my brother’s front door just for that picture and they think it’s funny”. She also wants anyone concerned at the Sun’s treatment of her brother to sign Gary Topley’s petition (see HERE).
Of course, that behaviour could be stopped by one person making one phone call. That person is Rebekah Brooks, CEO of News UK, who could pick up her mobile and tell her hacks and snappers to desist. If she really was Gazza’s friend, she would have done this long ago. She hasn’t, because she isn’t.
Rebekah Brooks didn’t get where she is today by being anything less than a totally uncaring, selfish, grasping, intolerant, bullying, manipulative, soulless and vicious hypocrite. Remember that next time you’re tempted to shell out hard cash for one of her papers. And remember one other thing. Don’t buy the Sun.