Thursday, 10 January 2008

BBC Censors Bhutto's Bin Laden Murder Claim

On 2nd November 2007 the late Benazir Bhutto gave an interview to David Frost on his show Frost all over the World in which she claims that Omar Sheikh murdered Osama Bin Laden. The show originally aired on Al Jazeera. However when the BBC got hold of it they sleekly edited out this claim. See the unedited clip below.

Following complaints - by amongst others the guy who posted the video below - the edited segment was finally restored on the BBC version of the interview (just a few days ago, I think). See the edit below, it begins at around 2:20.


Several questions. Firstly, and most obviously, why did the BBC edit the interview? Clearly we don't know. But it's suspiscious. If they knew the story to be false then they should have aired it and written a piece declaring it as such. The BBC is, after all, a news organisation. They're meant to employ journalists to tell us what's going on in the world. But instead of this they edit Bhutto's allegation as if it did not exist.


The BBC have explained why they edited the interview. I did a search on the BBC website for 'Bhutto Bin Laden murder'. Whilst there's no story in relation to Bhutto's allegation, there is an editorial about it. Following accusations of censorship Steve Herrmann, editor of the BBC news website, defends the editing of the interview by saying that the item producer was under "time pressure" to get the interview out. He says that Bhutto's allegation "appeared so unexpected that it seemed she had simply mis-spoken." Thus the allegation was edited to "avoid confusion."

Fucking bullshit. If the producer of the interview was truly under "time" pressure to get the interview out then surely it would have been quicker to not edit it. Editing something obviously takes more time than not editing it. And it "appeared" unexpected? It "seemed" that she had mis-spoken? You have to be kidding me. Is Bhutto's allegation true or isn't it? That's the only relevant question here. The BBC doesn't receive over £3billion a year in licence fees to base its version of 'truth' on how an allegation appeared or seemed. I almost can't believe I'm coming out with this phrase, but 'it's a disgrace'. Even the admission that the interview was edited to "avoid confusion." It doesn't matter whether it's confusing or not. What matters is whether or not it's true. Yet even in Harrmann's editorial, the importance of this question completely passes him by. He doesn't even acknowledge that whether or not Bin Laden was or was not murdered by Omar Sheikh is something that requires an answer.

Omar Sheikh

You will probably recall this name. British born Sheikh was arrested by Pakistani police in February 2002 for the murder of the Wall Street journalist Daniel Pearl. He was charged and sentenced to death in Pakistan in July 2002. The sentence has yet to be carried out.

There's also reason to believe that Omar Sheikh was a British agent working for MI6. Michael Meacher, Oldham MP and former cabinet minister under Blair, claims that Sheikh was recruited by MI6 along with anything up to 200 other British muslims. Sheikh and the others were sent to overseas terrorist training camps under the protection of the Pakistani secret service, the ISI, to act on behalf of UK and US interests in - amongst other things - an effort to overthrow the Afghan communist regime and its Soviet backers. Futhermore Pakistan President General Musharraf also claimed that Sheikh was a British agent in his book Line of Fire.

It will come as no surprise to find that the BBC in their profile of Sheikh completely fail to mention this. Something else the BBC fails to mention:

Omar Sheikh was responsible for transfering $100,000 to Mohammed Atta, the leading 9/11 hijacker, just days before the attacks. This transfer was made at the behest of General Mahmood Ahmed, head of Pakistan's ISI. This transfer was confirmed by Dennis Lomel, director of the FBI's financial crimes unit.

Was Omar Sheikh still a British agent when he made the wire transfer to Atta? Did MI6 know about the transfer? Were they in any way complicit?

Bin Laden Murdered Claims Bhutto

This would hardly be a pithy little tit-bit story, would it? Yet there's no such story on the BBC website. And they made every attempt to withhold it from us. Herrmann's defense of the charge of censorship does nothing but confirm it. The BBC did censor it. And you have to ask yourself why.

But is Bhutto's allegation true? Did Sheikh murder Bin Laden? I have no idea. But it's an important question. If he did then Sheikh would have to have killed Bin Laden prior to his arrest in February 2002. And if he did, then every video and audio message by Bin Laden since at least this time can be known to be a fabrication. This further means that every news agency which carried the messages were knowingly or unknowingly complicit in an effort to convince us of a threat which did not exist. And who produced the fake audio and video messages if Bin Laden was dead?

If Sheikh didn't kill Bin Laden then we should at least know. This question deserves an answer. Even a flat out rebuttal would suffice. Yet the BBC says Nothing. At least nothing other than the allegation "appeared so unexpected that it seemed she had simply mis-spoken." Which manages neither to affirm or deny the claim.

Remember that Britain invaded Afghanistan on the grounds that Bin Laden was behind the 9/11 attacks. At least that was the cover story for the invasion. If Bin Laden was murdered or killed in late 2001 (and there's good reason to think he was: even the BBC admit that no one has seen him since that time) then could Britain's continued presence in Afghanistan be publicly justified?


Nick said...

i remember when the BBC also talked about wtc 7 collapsing likeing 15 minutes before it actually did.

Anonymous said...

According to Representative Press on YouTube it was a slip up and she meant to say Daniel Pearl. That is quite likely correct, but still ....

Mark J Windle said...

That's interesting. That Bhutto was referring to Pearl would make sense. Will look into it, thanks.

Anonymous said...

I guess we'll never know now that shes been silenced(murdered)... How convenient!!!

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