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A Guardian editor defends a “gentle” smear of Seumas Milne – UPDATED


The exchange I had with Chris Elliott (below) illustrates how the liberal end of the establishment media reinforces what comes out of the far right media.

Seumas Milne, on leave from the Guardian where he was a columnist (one of the very few worth reading) to become Jeremy Corbyn’s Executive Director of Strategy and Communications, has been viciously slandered in the corporate press over the past few days.

Neil Clark, writing for Sputnik News, noted that one would think “from reading these attacks that Milne was some kind of wild-eyed, foaming at the mouth madman who needs to be tethered on a leash for public safety”. John Wright, writing for Counterpunch, accurately described the onslaught against Milne as “a feral and unhinged scream from the swamp of reaction”. On twitter, Naomi Klein called the flurry of attacks “appalling and enraging”.

But Chris Elliott – Milne’s colleague at the Guardian – is not one of the enraged it appears. Elliott can’t provide a link to substantiate a causal smear of Milne (possibly unintended in this case) that just appeared in the Guardian.  At any time, if you are going to write that somebody praised Stalin, you should have evidence to back it up – especially if written about somebody who is facing a media lynch mob. We’ll see if Elliott does his job on behalf of a colleague who is being ferociously attacked. It doesn’t look good at all though does it?

UPDATE: To Elliott’s credit, the article now reads 

Let’s scroll through the millions of words Milne has written over more than three decades and find some – about dear old Joe Stalin, say – that don’t look too fit for purpose in 2015.

Mention of “praise” has now vanished.

****

RE:

http://www.theguardian.com/media/2015/oct/23/seumas-milne-media-move-burst-bubble-corbyn-labour

This article on Milne should be amended

Peter Peston wrote

“Let’s scroll through the millions of words Milne has written over more than three decades and find some – in praise of dear old Joe Stalin, say – that don’t look too fit for purpose in 2015.”

No link is provided to any article where Milne praises Stalin. You should supply the link to substantiate this or delete this sentence.

Peston may say this was meant as a “hypothetical”, and maybe he intended it that way, but that doesn’t excuse it – especially given the vicious attacks Milne has already received since joining Corbyn’s team

Joe Emersberger

Elliot replied:
Joe,
It’s not Peston, It’s Preston and, frankly, it appears to me to be pretty gentle.
Chris
My response:

Chris

I asked for link to article where Milne praised Stalin.
Do you have one?
Joe

1 comment

  1. Steven Hunt November 8, 2015 6:49 pm 

    Hello, I am doing some research into the organization Pulse Media.

    I also am interested in Omydiar’s media project, The Intercept.

    Jeremy Scahill and Mother Agnes incident prompts my curiosity to dig more

    Thanks, Steven Hyubt

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