Interesting comment here, and undeniably true, in the UK Press Gazette. There are so few truly courageous journalists from the Murdoch stable who would know this to be true but refuse to speak out; gotta pay the mortgage on that charming 4 bedroom place, remember?
Daily Mail editor Paul Dacre yesterday said other Fleet Street editors are not given freedom to edit and that Britain could not have invaded Iraq without the support of… News International… proprietor Rupert Murdoch.
Dacre revealed that he has turned down opportunities to edit The Times and the Telegraph because he believes that other proprietors would not have given him the freedom that… Daily Mail and General Trustowner Lord Rothermere has.
He said: “Rupert Murdoch has been a very great proprietor in his time, but I don’t think he would have given me the freedom I wished to have as an editor…
“I don’t think there’s any doubt that he had strong views which he communicated to his editors and expected them to be followed. The classic case is the Iraq War.
“I’m not sure that the Blair government or Tony Blair would have been able to take the British people to war if it hadn’t been for the implacable support provided by the Murdoch papers. There’s no doubt that came from Mr Murdoch himself.”
In written evidence, Dacre expanded on the theme of editorial independence:
“In my time I have turned down editorships of The Times and The Telegraph. One reason I did so is that at the Mail I enjoy total freedom from proprietorial and managerial interference, a freedom that is not necessarily found in other newspaper groups.