Friday, 24 April 2009

New Gurkha Guidelines - BBC and Guardian coverage - compare and contrast

Witness the gaping chasm between the two!

First the BBC article Fury over Gurkha settlement plan details how the government claims the new guidelines will allow another 4,300 Gurkhas to settles whereas the Gurkha Justice Campaign said it would be just 100. It includes quotes from Joanna Lumley , "To treat them like this is despicable." "ashamed of our administration", our very own Peter Carroll, "truly appalling", an ex-Gurkha local councillor, Dhan Gurung, "insulting to loyal Gurkhas"and the Gurkhas' solicitor, David Enwright, "This government, Mr Woolas, should hang their head in shame so low that their forehead should touch their boots. This is a disgrace and a betrayal of our armed forces and our veterans."

Immigration Minister Phil Woolas said in response: "This improves the situation."

Over at the Guardian however, it's reprinting Government Press Release time, in their article New guidelines allow thousands more Gurkha veterans to settle in UK, there is no mention that this might not be a pure good news story. In this version we have quotes from Phil Woolas, "This guidance honours the service, commitment and gallantry of those who served with the Gurkhas brigade" and the chief of the general staff General Sir Richard Dannatt, "further underlines our extensive and ongoing commitment to the welfare of former Gurkhas".

Now I know the BBC story is two hours after the Guardian one and you could argue is more of a follow-up reaction story but didn't it occur to anyone at the Guardian to actually talk to the Ghurkas or their organisations? I'm sure they wouldn't have been backwards in coming forwards!

UPDATE: Oh bah humbug as I was writing this the Guardian story has been updated with a more balanced view. Now it's called "Government accused of 'betraying' Gurkhas over UK settlement right" (same URL) and it talks of "an act of treachery" and has quotes from Nick.

Ah look there is an "Article History" link. I'll just link to the 10:30 version of the story...hang on it says "
This article was first published on at 13.28 BST on Friday 24 April 2009. It was last updated at 13.28 BST on Friday 24 April 2009. "

Hmm, so has the original now dissapeared into the ether for ever, so we have no proof of the Guardian's government mouthpiece role?

1 comment:

Lee Griffin said...

Because they so consistantly stand with the government...?