Irene Khan on Gita Sahgal

An important post @ Earwicga, Irene Khan was on Woman’s Hour and inevitably was asked about Gita Sahgal and Amnesty, despite Sahgal saying she has been bringing up these issues internally at Amnesty repeatedly (although she changes these details from interview to interview) Khan says-

I hired Gita and she worked with me for six years. While I was there those concerns did not come to light.  She didn’t ever express them to me so I can’t comment on her specific case or what’s happened since I left.

It is also worth noting Khan is hated by the decent/neocon axis, those same people (pro-war and to varying degrees soft on torture, pro torture and who for a while have viewed Moazzam Begg as a prime target) who are taking full advantage of Sahgal’s campaign to attack Amnesty by ‘supporting’ her, support she does not disassociate herself from.

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The Loan Sharks of War

I guess this is inflation, the Friedman unit is played out, it’s time for the McChrystal unit, c’mon just another 12-18 months-

The general overseeing the US military campaign in Afghanistan has warned that the offensive against the Taliban in southern Helmand province’s Marjah town is just the start of an operation that could last 18 months. General David Petraeus, the commander of US Central Command, said on Sunday that the months ahead will be “tough”.

Petraeus said the campaign, which started on February 13, would not stop with Marjah and nearby Nad Ali.  “This is just the initial operation of what will be a 12 to 18-month campaign as General [Stanley] McChrystal [the head of US and Nato forces in Afghanistan] and his team mapped it out,”

David Cameron Knowingly Employs A Cowardly Bully- Andy Coulson

Update: A real bullying charity -Bullying UK- has reported NBH to the charity commission. NBH has breached  confidentiality which puts people at risk in order to help a Conservative party political campaign, Prof Cary Cooper a director has resigned over this.

Gordon Brown does appear to be a bully (and a wildly in denial neoliberal chump), but as Adam Bienkov has shown the National Bullying Helpline is a dodgy outfit and here in a repost from three months ago, Cameron knowingly employs a bully, Andy Coulson, as his head of communications/spin doctor. Where was the ‘non political’ NBH then? Both bullies should be called out, Coulson can easily be fired, Brown is slightly more tricky due to him being PM and we can’t even get one of those for war crimes, but there should be sanctions (or better yet he stands down and we have an election, John McDonnell for leader!) and the message bullying is not tolerated, so far both parties are giving the opposite message. Here is that older post:-

A News of the World reporter who suffered from a culture of bullying led by former editor Andy Coulson, who is now David Cameron’s head of communications, has been awarded almost £800,000 for unfair dismissal and disability discrimination.

Matt Driscoll, a sports reporter sacked in April 2007 while on long-term sick leave for stress-related depression, was awarded £792,736 by the east London employment tribunal. It is believed to be the highest payout of its kind in the media, and legal costs could take News International’s total bill well over the £1m mark.

The award will cause fresh embarrassment for Coulson, who resigned in January 2007 from the newspaper after the former royal editor, Clive Goodman, was jailed for hacking into the phone messages of aides to the royal family.

Earlier this year, Coulson faced renewed pressure, after the Guardian revealed that the News of the World’s owner, News International, had paid out £1m to settle claims from Gordon Taylor, the chief executive of the Professional Footballers’ Association, and other victims of phone hacking.

Driscoll, who has not been in a full-time job since his dismissal, said the award reflected the severity of the case. (ht2 Anton Vowl)

So the Tories have a problem, their top spin doctor is shown in court to be a bully, not just an also ran but the ring leader, how can any schools operate an anti bullying strategy under a Conservative government that employs a proven bully in a senior position? What message does it send, for all the fine words Cameron and chums might speak over bullying, until he fires Coulson his actions clearly say- bullying is ok with me and I reward, at the highest level and value, bullies in my team, bullying will get you where you want to go. Not to mention bugging.

Just how many ‘second chances’ will Cameron give, and anyway a second chance is what you give someone who shows genuine remorse and contrition, none so far has been forthcoming from Coulson. Now this is all pretty well much unsurprising, people are not shocked Conservatives are bigots, crooks and bullies. Yet it is unfair and wrong to hold that as a prejudice, so here’s a chance for Cameron to show they are not unremittingly awful human beings by firing Coulson, however I would advise him to ensure Coulson has proper medical help. We can’t know why Coulson has this problem, maybe his mother abused him or his father hated him, maybe he is a sociopath, superficially charming yet unable to feel empathy or a wide range of normal human emotions. Maybe a physical malformation of parts of his brain are its cause. While he is in positions of power his personal failings are a source of concern and great potential harm to those affected by his actions, when properly kept in a situation where he cannot harm himself and others he should have our sympathy. Perhaps this will lead to Cameron committing to tax the vast unearned wealth of his supporters to fund proper mental health provision under the NHS, so that Andy might no longer cowardly victimise others, avoiding responsibility for his actions while his underlying personal and mental problems go unaddressed. For those having to work with Coulson, solidarity is the key tactic for deterring bullying, forming strong supportive co-operatives or unions will defeat the bully.

Who said satire was dead?

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