Friday, June 24, 2016

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Ibrox & Gomorrah

David McSweeney sees poor media coverage of corruption in Scottish football. David McSweeney occasionally writes for TPQ.

Roberto Saviano is a beacon of brave journalism, he is the author of Gomorrah an expose of gangland and state corruption Italian style. Saviano is a winner of the PEN/Pinter prize.

At the end of May Saviano described Britain as “the most corrupt country in the world”. At the time it struck me that for a country to get to this state of affairs, the media within, would have had to be corrupted and nobbled in a nearly complete.

The clear reality that the British media is a “for hire” enterprise was amply demonstrated by The Guardian newspaper this week.

The paper had accepted two ads for its additions on the 1st and 4th of June 2016 The paper was fully aware of what the copy related to, namely the biggest ongoing sports corruption story in Europe, Scottish football. The ads were an attempt to bring corruption in the Scottish game to the wider British public attention.

The paper subsequently refused to print the advertisements, despite the fact they had been placed and payment accepted. The Guardian was got at, allowed itself be silenced, was maybe even bought off. It broke every tenet of real journalism definitely: simple as.

The Guardian then proceeded to lie about the issue in the most bizarre way. The paper claimed they had received the ad in French and when it was translated into English they decided not to run it. One of papers own employees described the issue as “an unique situation we have never faced in the paper before”.

The Guardian Media Correspondent, Ray Greenslade, restated the falsehood in copy he released on the issue the following day.

Those who drafted the advertisement and crowd funded its placement, Celtic Quick News, have clearly stated there never was a French language version of the advert, so it could not have been an issue.

In particular the ads refered to the “Resolution 12” situation: that is allegations that the Scottish Football Association colluded with Rangers (1872) to hide tax payable to the British state from the club when they applied for a UEFA license to compete four years ago. Furthermore, UEFA has questions to answer according to the resolution people, due to their silence on the issue.

The events and subterfuge surrounding the liquidation of Rangers (1872) Football club will cost the British taxpayer as much as ninety four million Euro.

The wider societal significance of this story can be seen when we consider that Scotland's most high profile politician on a world stage at present, and former First Minister of Scotland, Alex Salmond, referred to Rangers Football club at the time of its liquidation as “part of the fabric of Scottish Society”.

The Offshoregame organisation have produced a comprehensive, forensic expose of the Scottish football scandal which can be accessed on their excellent website.

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