Someone at the Super Soaraway Currant Bun has a short memory, as one scan of today’s editorial shows all too clearly. Below a headline rant about those who persist in using their phones when driving cars - don’t do it, folks, you’re in charge of a very large and potentially deadly projectile - is a more routine Sun target, that of Human Rights. Under the headline “Human Wrongs Act”, the Murdoch doggies have put the ball in their own net.
Who might we have here, Murdoch doggies?
The spiel begins in predictable territory: going after someone Foreign, Brown and Muslim, not exactly a show-stopper for the inmates of the Baby Shard bunker. “SOMETIMES the legal system is laughable … An Algerian terror suspect who was twice ruled a threat to our national security can’t be sent back to his homeland” is the typically incandescent froth. Not that they want to just Send The Buggers Back, you understand.
But then it all goes horribly wrong: “He’s been fighting to remain here for 23 years and claims he’ll face torture if sent back. But he won’t reveal his actual identity so how can anybody know the truth?” Won’t reveal his identity. Ri-i-i-i-ight. Go on. “We need to stop the Human Rights Act being used as a convenient shield for dodgy people with bad intentions”. Dodgy people with bad intentions. Ri-i-i-i-ight.
Any more digging in that hole? “Our courts must be allowed to do what is right for Britain, not for the manipulative chancers who think we’re an easy touch”. Manipulative chancers who think we’re an easy touch? Ri-i-i-i-ight. If we’re talking an individual who won’t reveal his identity, someone who is dodgy and with arguably bad intentions, and a manipulative chancer, then the Murdoch doggies are in an awfully draughty glasshouse.
Who might fit all of those characterisations? Step forward one Mazher Mahmood, aka the Fake Sheikh, who for so long refused to reveal his identity - even when he gave testimony to the Leveson Inquiry - and got terribly upset when a recent BBC Panorama investigation broadcast recent video of him. The same Mazher Mahmood who was memorably, and rightly, described by Nick Davies as “a criminal with an NUJ card”.
The same Mazher Mahmood who was a seriously dodgy character, and who harboured very bad intentions, bad enough to laugh at the prospect of ending the career of actor John Alford by pulling another of those drugs stings on him. The same Mazher Mahmood who manipulated not just the victims of those stings, but also his fellow journalists, all the way up to his former bosses - including Rupert Murdoch.
The same Mazher Mahmood who, as has been discussed on Zelo Street previously, spoke in hushed tones several times a day to the twinkle-toed yet domestically combative Rebekah Brooks. And the same Mazher Mahmood who, two months ago, was found guilty of trying to fiddle the evidence for another of his stings, that being on singer Tulisa Contostavlos, for which he is now spending some time at Her Majesty’s Pleasure.
So when the Sun wants to go after anonymous, dodgy, manipulative individuals who work the system to their benefit, they should remember they have one right on their doorstep.