I was following the saga of the British Navy and the Iranians.

I wasn’t exactly out there burning flags or ranting at the television.  If the British go to war they mustn’t complain if bad things happen.  Which they tend to do, in war.

Anyway, the Iranians made right eejits out of the British.  They treated the captives well by all accounts.  They showed film of them playing games and being happy.  It wasn’t forced happiness.  You could see they were having a good time.  And the captives were released and were even given ‘goodie bags’.  They were certainly treated better than any Iraqi captive!

Mind you, Terry Jones had a strong opinion on the matter.

Then there was the extraordinary move where the returned people were suddenly allowed to sell their story to the press.

Last night I watched yer wan Faye Turney being interviewed on “Tonight“.  She suddenly told a completely different story.  She told of isolation, and humiliation and mental torture.  She told how the Iranians threatened her daughter [how did they know she had a daughter?] and how they contacted her mother-in-law [how did they know her mother-in-laws address or phone number?].  Basically, she was afraid for her life and had been treated very badly.

Shortly after the programme, the British Government announced that forces personnel could no longer sell their stories to the press.


Now a cynic might say that the British Government allowed them to sell their stories only if they told the story the British Government wanted them to tell.

A cynic might say that if you watched Turney as well as listening, her body language told a different story, and that she was lying through her teeth.

A cynic might say that this was a rather pathetic attempt by the British Government to save face after being humiliated.

A cynic might say that the right to tell a story was rescinded because the propaganda machine had done its job and wasn’t needed any more.

But I’m not a cynic.  Am I?

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Don't listen to the words – Watch the picture — 11 Comments

  1. Concur absolutely, Grandad. This particular propaganda exercise is so transparent one would want to be a total “ludramawn” (anyone remember that word from angry irish teachers?) not to see through it. Videos released showed the servicemen/woman relaxed in captivity, even though they were compelled to “confess” to having strayed into Iraqi waters.

    It is just not believable that they could have been undergoing psychological torture at the same time, as is now claimed. Are the British Government and their spin doctors taking their own people and the rest of the world for gullible idiots?

  2. I take then that you are a cynic, Monique? 😉

    And the majority of the British people will fall for it.

    Many’s the time I was called a ludramawn [and worse]. Stop brining back bad memories.

  3. I’d be interested in seeing a video tape of this purely to see if she is fibing. I couldn’t care less though about the whole incident though.

    And now back to the Irish…
    Gamalaracht! (donkeying around) – Do you remember that one?

  4. It was on ITV, and I don’t think they do any sort of archiving.

    I was watching her face, and every time she told a whopper [i.e. most of the time] she blinked rapidly, the eyes would look anywhere but at the interviewer and there was a lot of mouth twitching too. I would love to hear a professional interrogator’s view as they are trained to look for these signs.

    No. Never heard of ‘gamalaracht’, I’m afraid.

  5. Mmmh. I’m inclined to be a cynic too. Even Blair paid the Iranians respect afterwards.

    Good article Grandad (and no, that doesn’t mean your others are not good…I just don’t always get time to read all or comment on your prolific output!!!).

  6. No Monique, the sailors themselves KNOW that the rest of the world are gullible idiots. Which story will garner the better deal:

    – We went to Iran and got a nice gift bag;

    – I was abducted by horny Iranians that wanted to have sex with my unborn baby.

    The second story will, of course, fly off the shelves and the movie rights are already being negotiated…

  7. Those fool surrendered without a fdight and willingly turned themselves into mouthpieces for the most unstable political regime on earth.

    For all their follies, the Americans have balls. They would never have given into something humiliating like that so readily. If you want a precedent, read Black Hawk Down: A Story Of Modern War. When two Delta Force snipers were overwhelmed by Somali forces, they kept popping away at them until finally they were killed.

    The Brits would have given them tea and crumpets, if this incident is anything to go by.

  8. they kept popping away at them until finally they were killed

    That did ’em a lot of good!

    I’m surprised at you Dario. What ever happened to the good old student pacifists of my day?


  9. Hey, they died valiantly, and the point I’m making is that those English soldiers seemingly didn’t have the same tenacity.

    Student pacifists are still lurking about Belfield … they’re just busy in the Student Bar most of the day …

  10. I have 2 points.
    First off, the brits have a very good point on overwhelming force. They lived to fight another day.
    Rule #11 of the Rules of Gunfights clearly states… Someday someone may kill you with your own gun, but they should have to beat you to death with it because it is empty.

  11. God! You’re a bloodthirsty one Brianf. Remind me never to spill your pint.

    @Dario – You should be out on peace marches – demanding the end to the war, and burning down the British and American Embassies and slaughtering their staff [all in the name of peace, of course]

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