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Stumbling Over Truth: The inside story of the sexed-up dossier, Hutton and the BBC [Hardcover]

Kevin Marsh
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
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Price: 16.75 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

24 Sep 2012
The Hutton Report in 2004 created today s BBC. It cost the corporation its Chairman and Director General and ushered in an age of self-doubt and caution. It was also the end of the most extraordinary experiment in news management Britain has ever seen, the decade of Alastair Campbell the Blair courtier who delivered new Labour s mission to create the truth . But Lord Hutton condemned the BBC and its journalism without hearing a single word from the man who put the sexed-up dossier story on air Today editor Kevin Marsh. Had he done so his conclusions would have been very different. Now outside the BBC, Marsh can tell for the first time the inside story of Andrew Gilligan s infamous 0607 broadcast on the Today programme. He explains how he was certain the story was true, but also how Gilligan s flawed reporting fatally damaged the BBC s case. And he tells of his growing disillusion with the British media s ability and appetite for holding power to account or even telling the truth. This is an important book for anyone who wants to understand the toe-to-toe confrontations between Tony Blair s government and the BBC, and the fight to keep BBC journalism independent in the face of unprecedented government pressure.


Product details

  • Hardcover: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Biteback Publishing (24 Sep 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1849541523
  • ISBN-13: 978-1849541527
  • Product Dimensions: 0.3 x 18.6 x 24.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 473,297 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

'Marsh provides an important contribution to the narrative surrounding Iraq and media coverage. Several fascinating tales are told' ---- John Kampfner , The Observer

About the Author

KEVIN MARSH was editor of the Today programme from 2002 to 2006. He lives in London.

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5.0 out of 5 stars Lord Butler reports for duty. 18 July 2014
Format:Hardcover
The great rewards of reading this book are finding out precisely why Blair & Downing Street felt safe from the moment they saw their choice of Lord Hutton approved as the man to head the Iraq dossier investigation. Long ago I remember reading in a London newspaper a remark by a Blair ally, "When the word got out that Hutton was the one appointed to lead the Gilligan panel, we knew we were safe."

In Chapter 8, pages 197-220, "How Hutton Failed" we get a full account of Hutton's prior record of pro-establishment findings and his antipathy to whistle blowers of all kinds. This makes sense of the remark of the late Philip Gould, one of the Prime Minister's most trusted advisors, that 'we appointed the right judge." (page 198.) This record of Hutton's failure is analysed further, with specific analytic comments by Lord Butler in the final chapter "Postscript" pages 303-318. To find this material collected in one place is worth the price of the book.

The bulk of the book (330 pages) is devoted to this BBC insider's hour-by-hour account of what transpired from Andrew Gilligan's 6:07AM bombshell and Alexander Campbell's subsequent hellish and indefatigable counterattack + distortions. It's slow going because the text is fortifying itself against possible legal reprisals and potential charges of libel and slander. This explains the over meticulous parsings of events and mincings of words throughout. This is contested terrain and the author, under BBC imprimatur, has to act with utmost meticulous care of presentation.

There was a big shakeup of the BBC as a result of Lord Hutton's blinkered and inadequate setting out of his remit and lines of questioning.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent exposé 16 Feb 2013
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
An enlightening exposé of the inner culture of the BBC and how hidden agendas of powerful people are pushed to the limits. I'd have liked a bit more on the story of David Kelly but can understand it could be regarded as not in the remit of this book...needs to be read by those who had suspicions and need the 'proof'.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Essential reading 9 April 2014
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This should be read by everyone who is interested in politics and especially Blair's misguided conviction to which he clings to this day that he was right to take us to war with Iraq
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A gripping account 19 Dec 2012
Format:Hardcover
I'm not one normally to write reviews, but for anyone with any interest at all in the politics of the last decade, this is absolutely essential reading.

The antics of New Labour/Campbell/Blair are exposed in a superb account of the 'sexed up' dossier wrangle and the Hutton report.

I have no connection whatsoever with the author and recommend this wholeheartedly for the scandals it reveals.

Essential.
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Amazon.com: 5.0 out of 5 stars  1 review
5.0 out of 5 stars Lord Hutton's whitewash of Tony Blair's Iraq invasion. 17 July 2014
By Ronald Haak - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition
The great rewards of reading this book are finding out precisely why Blair & Downing Street felt safe from the moment they saw their choice of Lord Brian Hutton approved as the man to head the Iraq dossier investigation. The late Phillip Gould, one of the Prime Minister's most trusted advisors, was overheard telling a colleague, we appointed the right judge." p.198.

I myself remember reading in a London newspaper after the release of the Blair-friendly Hutton report a remark by a Blair ally, "When the word got out that Hutton was the one appointed to lead the Gilligan panel, we knew we were safe." In Chapter 8, pages 197-220, "How Hutton Failed" we get a full account of Hutton's prior record of pro-establishment findings and his antipathy to whistle blowers of all kinds. This record of Hutton bias is augmented by the final chapter "Postscript" pages 303-318. To find this material collected in one place is worth the price of the book.

The bulk of the book (330 pages) is devoted to this BBC insider's hour-by-hour account of what transpired from Andrew Gilligan's 6:07AM bombshell and Alexander Campbell's subsequent hellish and indefatigable counterattack + distortions. It's slow going because the text is fortifying itself against possible legal reprisals and potential charges of libel and slander. This explains the over meticulous parsings of events and mincings of words throughout. This is contested terrain and the author, under BBC imprimatur, has to act with utmost meticulous care of presentation.

There was a big shakeup of the BBC as a result of Lord Hutton's blinkered and inadequate setting out of his remit and lines of questioning. A subsequent panel chaired by Lord Butler chased many of the shadows away, but Blair got the period of respite he needed after leading the nation into Bush's war.
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