Showing posts with label Andrew Neil. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Andrew Neil. Show all posts

Monday, 15 July 2013

Khashoggi's Ship

Khashoggi's Ship is a Queen song by Freddie Mercury dealing with his full-blown AIDS diagnosis in 1988 and, by extension, the time place and circumstances by which he no-doubt concluded he had contracted the so-called HIV Virus.

Who said my party was all over, huh, huh,
I'm in pretty good shape,
The best years of my life are like a supernova,
Huh, huh, perpetual craze, I said that
Everybody drank my wine - you get my drift,
And then we took a holiday on khashoggi's Ship - well,
We really had a good good time they was all so sexy
We was bad, we was blitzed,
All in all it was a pretty good trip,

This big bad sucker with a fist as big as your head,
Wanted to get me, I said go away
I said kiss my ass honey,
He pulled out a gun, wanted to arrest me,
I said uh, uh, babe,
Now listen no-one stops my party,
No-one stops my party,
No-one, no-one, no-one stops my party,
Just like I said,
we were phased, we was pissed,
Just having a total eclipse,

Bup bup, badabup, badibup bup bup bedabup bedadee hey
That's good
Wooh wooh wooh wooh wooh wooh (<--background screaching)
This one's on me so let us do it just right
This here one party don't get started 'till midnight,

Party to the left
Party to the right
Lay mine in the middle
Do it all night, Alright Alright
Two within the middle with you 
We're goin' budy
hey huh
Left - right
Left right
No-one stops my... Aaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhrrrggghhhhhh

Ollie North, Pamela Bordes, Adnan Khashoggi, Al Fayed, Andrew Neil, Donald Trelford...

The following report includes brief quotes from one of the chapters in the excellent book 'EXPOSED!' by Gerry Brown, 1995, Virgin Books.

Pamela Bordes was a House of Commons researcher and reportedly also a high-class hooker.

According to Brown (Page 272) :

"A real man entered her life... 

This was... Andrew Neil, editor of the Sunday Times...

(She was) introduced to... Donald Trelford, editor of the Observer... and MPs, cabinet ministers and the like...

She was photographed turning up in a limo with... Sports Minister Colin Moyniham...

Pamella's Arab benefactor... was Adnan Khashoggi, the billionaire Saudi arms dealer. And the man who occupied her evenings at the Plaza Athenee in Paris was none other than Said Ghaddaf Adem, the cousin of Colonel Gaddafi...

20-year-old Raicey Wightman sobbed to the News of the World... 

Raicey revealed there had been sex and drugs orgies at the home of a Tory MP with a member of the House of Lords and a well-known businessman involved...

The Times of India, not to be outdone, claimed Pamella had links with the Al Fayed brothers who had taken over Harrods... 

and that she was the femme fatale in the loop of Ollie North and the mullahs in the Iran-Contra deal...

Andrew Neil revealed... 
who had introduced him to pamella Bordes - Lady 'Bubbles' Rothermere, wife of the proprietor of the Daily Mail...

I quote The Enemy:

"A regular feature of the Letters page is "Photo Opportunity", where correspondents concoct spurious reasons for the magazine to print a particular 1995 photo of journalist Andrew Neil embracing a young woman, often described as Asian or mistaken for former Miss India Pamella Bordes -- though she is fact African American.

On the photograph's initial printing, it was learned that Neil found the photograph embarrassing, and the Eye has reprinted it frequently since. 

Neil has described this as an example of "public school racism" on the part of the magazine's editorial staff, which he found "fascinating". 

The magazine nicknamed him Brillo, after his wiry hair which is seen as bearing a resemblance to a form of kitchen scouring pad.

In addition, it often misspells his surname with an extra L, in reference to Neil's relationship with Pamella Bordes, whose name is written with two Ls."

David Aaronovitch's Second Explanation is Actually the Correct One

He just neglects to mention that he (Aaronovitch) is also part of the cover-up and that cancer-causing viruses (aka oncoviruses, most notably SV-40) are known to have been found (although not deliberately put there) in vaccines such as the live Polio vaccine since at least 1956.

Andrew Neill was the editor for the The Times and worked for Rupert Murdoch. For Years.

Rupert Murdoch's chosen 2012 presidential surrogate, Former Director of Central Inteliigenence, Former CENTCOM Commander Celebrity General David David Petreaus was in attendance for the second time this year, despite holding no Government position and having (on paper) no prospects.

Training Day.

Hello, Henry - fancy seeing you here!

Stratfor hacker faces 10 years in jail after pleading guilty

Associated Press in New York, Wednesday 29 May 2013 03.39 BST

Jeremy Hammond, unmasked by Anonymous infiltrator Sabu, admits stealing information later published by WikileaksStratfor hacker faces 10 years in jail after pleading guilty

Jeremy Hammond, unmasked by Anonymous infiltrator Sabu, admits stealing information later published by Wikileaks

A self-described anarchist and hacker activist has pleaded guilty in the US to charges he illegally accessed computer systems of law enforcement agencies and government contractors.

Prosecutors had alleged that Jeremy Hammond took part in cyber-attacks carried out by Anonymous, the loosely organised worldwide hacking group that stole confidential information, on groups including the global intelligence firm Stratfor. Hammond was accused of defacing websites and temporarily putting some victims out of business.

Hammond was caught in 2012 with the help of Hector Xavier Monsegur, a famous hacker known as Sabu who later helped police infiltrate Anonymous.

"As part of each of these hacks, I took and decimated confidential information stored on computer systems websites used by each of the entities," Hammond told a judge in federal court in Manhattan. He faces up to 10 years in prison when he is sentenced on 6 September.

WikiLeaks published much of the material Hammond is accused of having stolen. Wikileaks chief Julian Assange responded to the guilty plea on Tuesday with a statement saying: 
"The Obama administration's treatment of Jeremy Hammond is a disgrace."

A criminal complaint had accused Hammond of pilfering information relating to more than 850,000 people via his attack on Texas-based Strategic Forecasting, the publisher of geopolitical information known as Stratfor. He was also accused of using the credit card numbers of Stratfor clients to make charges of at least $US700,000.

Hammond, 28, once campaigned against plans to hold the 2016 Olympics in Chicago because he felt it would hurt low-income people. 

He had also protested against neo-Nazi groups.

Strategic Forecasting, Inc., more commonly known as Stratfor, is a global intelligence company founded in 1996 in Austin, Texas, by George Friedman who is the founder, chief intelligence officer, and CEO of the company. 

Fred Burton is Stratfor's Vice President of Intelligence.

In early 2012, WikiLeaks began publishing over 5 million of the company's email messages

A website run by his supporters has described Hammond as "one of the few true electronic Robin Hoods".

But prosecutors called him a menace. Hammond, who used online aliases such as "crediblethreat" and "yohoho", once described himself as "an anarchist communist", the complaint said.

His brother, Jason Hammond, said in a statement: 

"Jeremy has taken responsibility for what he's done, but he should not face such a harsh sentence for an act of protest from which he did not personally benefit."

Stratfor: Inside the World of a Private CIA

The leak of over five million emails from the US-based intelligence firm Stratfor, including information about credit card details, passwords, and the identities of sources, sheds new light on the rapidly changing world of intelligence gathering and exposes those behind it. 

Al-Akhbar gained access to the data obtained and published by WikiLeaks, including sensitive material pertaining to the Middle East.


Mean? Perhaps just a little bit. But AJ can take it.

I just find it slightly ironic for someone who's supposeddly a researcher....

"Well, you can't just go swilling booze right there in front of the Mullahs, but..."

It may be true that Islam is the official State Religion of Iran - but Christianity, specifically Anglicanism is the official State Religion of the United Kingdom, and there, as here, there are guarantees of religious liberty and a (somewhat) functional representative system government..

Unlike in the State of Israel  gerrymandering cannot occur and religious and ethnic minorities (in this case, 25,000 Jews) are guaranteed a seat at the table in the Assembly.

The Iran-Contra Scandal and The Secret Team from Spike1138 on Vimeo.
Lecture overview by Daniel Sheehan of the Christic Institute, 1987

October Surprise/Iran-Contra "Secret Government? That's Just a Conspiracy Theory..." from Spike1138 on Vimeo.
Err.... No, it isn't...
Would you say that your time as editor of the Sunday Times was your happiest time in journalism?

No, I would say now is my happiest time.

Joking aside you do actually always seem to be reveling in whatever you're doing at the moment. 
But it must've been fantastic to have been editor of the Sunday Times at that time.

Being editor of the Sunday Times for 11 years in the 1980, with the politics as it was then, was very different from today. 

With Wapping to do as well was huge. I wouldn't have missed a minute of it. It was fantastic. 

We were doing things that really mattered. I'm very proud of what we achieved with the Sunday Times and what it stood for in those days. 

But it quite often wasn't enjoyable because there was so much stress. For 13 months I had two bodyguards with me wherever I went and a special forces-trained driver. 

Also I had [Rupert] Murdoch in my life. 

Although overall Murdoch and I got on pretty well, and there were very few times when we had harsh words, he was always an omnipresent figure in your life. 

When the phone rang, was it him? 

And if you had a big decision to take, you had to ask yourself: "What would Rupert do?" 

Second-guessing Rupert is still the biggest industry in News International. Someone like that can make you editor of the Sunday Times or ask you to go and start Sky Television. 

But it's also a huge presence in your life which is not healthy to have for too long. I had it for 11 years. I should have gone after 10, actually. 

We parted on good terms though. 

The falling out came after my book was published. 

He hasn't spoken to me since. I just wrote how I saw all the pluses and the warts as well.

Do you think the BBC took a risk with you?

No, I don't think the BBC has taken a risk at all. The BBC has been very careful to use me in an episodic and cumulative way.

But you are quite opinionated and you're not frightened to voice opinions on the programmes, which most other political interviewers do not do.

Yes, I had a history. Most BBC presenters have done nothing but the BBC. And they have no hinterland. They all have strong views of their own but quite rightly they keep them quiet because that's what we should do. I had a history before the BBC and people know what my views are on a number of issues.

But it's quite rare that they take on people who've got a history.

I think they found it advantageous to take on someone who is outside the normal BBC culture. 

They also know that, wherever my own views are, it doesn't matter whether you're Labour, Liberal or Conservative, I don't take any prisoners. 

The biggest rows we've had are about interviewing Conservative politicians who think they've been treated unfairly. So I'm quite comfortable and I think the BBC is pretty comfortable too that we're an equal opportunities kicker.

You were there at the launch of Sky News. What effect do you think Sky has had on BBC journalism?

The first thing Sky proved, which no one believed at the time, was that there was a market for 24-hour news. 

People didn't think it would work in Britain. 

We showed it did work and the politicians liked it and the other journalists liked it as well. It gave Sky an entrée to the political elite that hadn't really wanted Sky to exist in the first place. 

If Sky News was to close down now there'd be an outcry among the politicians and the political elite. And the BBC then had to follow suit - 24-hour news is here to stay.

Has it been a wholly good thing because you could argue that it has contributed to the rise in spin?

Well, the real rise of spin came with Mandelson and Campbell in the mid-90s and I don't think that had anything to do with 24-hour news. 

That was in their DNA. 

They knew, above all, that New Labour had to be a marketing message. It's the bear that needs to be fed. Feed the bear, feed the bear. 

Though sometimes I don't understand why politicians do it. Why don't they just step back? Why do they keep on having to feed it all the time?

How on earth do you fit in all the things that you do - all the TV stuff, The Spectator, God knows what else? You must be the most brilliant time manager in history.

Brilliant may be too strong a word but I'm good at time management and I run my own diary. I tell my PA what's in my diary, not the other way round. I book all the appointments myself and I carve it out.

It's a good job being your PA then.

Actually don't mock it, it is. Compared to working for a chief exec of a big company, it is. Because I do all my own letters.

Whenever I've emailed you, you've answered it within about three minutes. Peter Mandelson's the same.

Is that right? I haven't got Peter Mandelson's email address. If I had, I would try it out. 

I put together a portfolio of work after leaving the Sunday Times in 1995 so I've got used to doing it over 15 years. 

The other thing is I'm single. I haven't got a family to worry about. 

I haven't got a family to give quality time to. I haven't got a wife who's sitting at home nursing her ire saying: 

"Where is he? He's not home, yet again."

Do you regret that?

Yes, I do regret it. But you can't have everything, and one of the minuses is not having children and not having had a wife. 

The plus is that I'm in control of my diary and all the time is for me. It's quite a selfish existence.

Did you actually make a decision?

No, it just happened. If this had been even 10, certainly 15 years ago, I'd have said I would have got married and had a family life. 

But that's just how it is. I didn't set out not to have a family. It's just the way it's been. 

That's why I've always taken more interest in my godchildren because if you haven't got children and you are very fond of kids... 

I get on well with kids. I'm invariably the one that gets handed the baby to quieten it down. This weekend I'm off to Dubai for a board meeting and some other meetings with a magazine company out there. 

If I was a family man, that would be more of a difficult thing. My partner would be saying: "Come on, do you have to go to Dubai now? We've not seen you for four weeks." 

Whereas the only person that cares is my housekeeper and she's pretty glad to see the back of me. 

Sadly the dog doesn't get to see me at all because he's in France.

What have you brought to The Spectator?

We've brought it into the 21st century for a start. It's now a well-run business and a proper business. I inherited something that was already on the way to becoming a better business because Conrad Black had begun to do that. It's now an independent, stand-alone company. 

Of course we share the same owners as the Telegraph. But this is a magazine company now in its own right which is looking to grow and is a magazine that makes profi ts and that protects its independence. 

I learnt a long while ago at The Economist, from Alastair Burnett, that if you make money you are independent. And with Fraser [Nelson], we've modernised it and made it very much part of the centreright debate.

Can you say what happened with Matthew d'Ancona?

No. I mean Matthew was doing a lot of other things and had a lot of other things to do. Editors are like football managers. Here today, gone tomorrow. As a former editor myself, I know what it's like.

I haven't seen the BBC coverage because I was presenting LBC's programme but there's been a lot of comment about your BBC boat on election night...

Well, it wasn't my boat.

You know what I mean.

I wish it was my boat.

Did it work?

I think it worked. David [Dimbleby] was anchoring the television centre coverage from 10pm to at least 6am, so you needed a bit of light and shade. The people who've criticised this have mainly been newspapers that have an anti-BBC agenda in the first place. So any excuse to give them a kicking. Also, the same newspapers who complained we had some celebrities on the boat are the papers that live by celebrities. The Daily Mail has endless celebrities everyday.

Do we need to hear Bruce Forsyth's thoughts on politics during election night though?

First of all you need a break. It cannot all be relentless "here's another result". 

The people on television themselves need a bit of a break, even just for three or four minutes, because the BBC doesn't have commercial breaks. Just a chance to draw breath and say: 

"Right, while Andrew is interviewing Bruce Forsyth, what are we doing next?" Of course the papers all concentrated on Bruce Forsyth and Joan Collins. 

Let's not forget that on that night we also had the first interview with Alastair Campbell. 

We had Simon Schama and David Starkey. I interviewed Andrew Rawnsley, the editor of the Financial Times Lionel Barber, Will Hutton on the situation in the markets and, at ten past five, Lord Ashcroft. 

It's interesting the papers have said: "Oh, we don't want to hear from all these celebrity non-entities and so on." The fact is we had an enormous mix of people.

Does your nickname of ‘Brillo' annoy you?

It's in with the woodwork now. It's just, to complain about that, what was it that Enoch Powell said? It would be like a sailor who complains about the sea.

How much do you hate Private Eye?

I don't hate Private Eye.

They do seem to have a thing about you, don't they?

Yeah but that's a bit... I get on very wellwith Ian Hislop. They always think there'sbad blood between us so they put me withPaul Merton [on Have I Got News for You?].But there's no bad blood. Last time I wason his team, not Paul Merton's. Private Eyeis strange. I used to read it religiously whenI was at the Sunday Times. Now I just see itevery now and then.

It's a bit like a paper blog now.

Sometimes when you are in it you think: "Oh I wish they hadn't said that." Then you're not in it and you think: "Oh, don't I matter anymore?" 

The one thing that they get completely wrong is the picture of me and ‘Pamella Bordes'. 

Except it's not Miss Bordes.

Isn't it?

It never has been Miss Bordes. That was a picture of a woman from New York that I was going out with in 1995. 

She worked at Fox and she is an Afro-American. 
She's not Asian, she's not Indian, she's not British. 

The picture was taken as we came off the beach in Barbados by [British photographer] Terry O'Neill. 

It's been presented now as if :

a) it's Miss Bordes 


b) that we were in some kind of nightclub and I'm there in this stupid shirt in a nightclub. 

It was a beach we'd come off hence the baseball cap and the beachwear. 

And this woman, this lovely, lovely... I've not seen or heard from her for 15 years - she's no idea she's the most famous face in Private Eye. 

But it's not Miss Bordes. Anyone slightly looking at her would see these are the features of an Afro-Caribbean lady. But sometimes these public schoolboys are not very good.

While he is hard to fault in the frank-and-fearless department, these attributes – or flaws, depending on your taste – do not nearly explain the real Neil. Nor can the maulings he has taken in the past be wholly ascribed to score-settling by those he has offended.

 “Dracula has had better profiles than me,” he says. While this is true, Neil actually seems a vulnerable figure, whose perceived overload of ego and vanities has, in the past, invited parody and rank derision. Like many upfront characters, he is, I would guess, much more insecure than he would care to show. 

Does he mind that Private Eye still regularly publishes the ancient picture of him in a vest, embracing a young woman? Expecting a dismissive answer, I get a treatise. 

“I haven't bought a copy of Private Eye since I left The Sunday Times. When people tell me my picture is still in it, I say: �That's good. I must still matter.' I'm not even sure whether that's true or not. I don't care. When it began in 1994, I found the public school racism fascinating. 

The woman is a black Afro-American. She was Barbara Walters's make-up artist; the top one in the U.S., and she worked on my show. Fox had to get the best one to do me. Ha ha. Our relationship broke up soon afterwards, and she's completely unaware that she's the most famous face in Private Eye. 

Then there was supposed to be this huge age difference. At the time, I was 44, and she was 35. That's not bad. And because this woman wasn't white, she had to be an Asian babe, just because they had seen Andrew out with Asian girls before.”

Everyone remembers Neil's relationship with Pamella Bordes, the former Miss India and Commons researcher who later turned out also to have been a call girl. Neil successfully sued Peregrine Worsthorne for calling him a playboy, but now wishes he hadn't bothered. 

“I think I was the only one in the whole Bordes saga who never had anything to hide. I was a single guy. It was a mistake to sue because the consequences would have been grim if I had lost, whereas the only consequence of winning was that I hadn't lost. It dragged the whole thing up again, to the greater gaiety of the nation.”

The old Neil liked clubbing at Tramp and could sometimes be spotted at a party conference, holding court at dinner to a bevy of young women bearing scant resemblance to Simone de Beauvoir. More recently, he confirmed that he was seeing what he rather quaintly referred to as “a steady; very private, very beautiful and very smart”. 

This woman was said, though not by him, to be a well-heeled Belgian businesswoman whom acquaintances regarded as a factor in forging the new, less abrasive Neil. Is that true?

“I'm not sure that's the reason. I've mellowed a bit. I'm not hand-to-hand fighting any more, and I've got more confidence in myself. When Murdoch appointed me to The Sunday Times, I knew that if I'd been him, I wouldn't have appointed me. I was by no means sure that I was up to doing it, and lots of people were pretty sure I wasn't... The mistake I made, too, is that I got into the frame of mind where I actually started picking fights. But I don't have to prove myself any more.”

My selfish existence

The changes in Neil cannot be ascribed, however, to his Belgian partner, who turns out not to have been so “steady” after all. 

“We've broken up. But I'm very fine, and happy. I'm not sure I will get married now,” he volunteers without being asked. “I always thought I would, but time goes on. Mine is a very selfish existence. I work seven days a week, and I have everything organised around me. It's quite hard for someone to fit into that. I still believe in love at first sight, but I've never quite found the right person, and they have never found me. I'm not saying it won't happen, but I think it's less likely now.”

Then, as I say, lest the conversation becomes too Mills and Boon, there is the money thing. Surely Neil, who must be very rich, cannot relish the thought of gold-diggers or a costly break-up? He takes this idea more seriously than I expect. 

“A friend of mine has just got divorced, and she got half his wealth and houses. He was wealthy enough still to be fine for the rest of his life. He'll continue to have his yacht. If I was to lose half of my wealth, that would change my prospects quite substantially.” 

Neil, who remains yachtless if lavishly-housed, has a reputation for frugality. Still, it is hard to believe that financial prudence is the real reason for his single status. He once said his best Christmas was one he spent alone in his French house, watching television with his housekeeper in attendance; a tableau that most people would consider to be borderline tragic. 

But he boasts of 14 godchildren, and no one who meets Neil could think him a lonely or disappointed man. I would guess that he simply lacks interest in the private compacts that fill and shape most people's lives. Why bother with the backstage stuff when you can be front-of-house?

Cut to the cluster of high-profile jobs, the media presence, the stridency, the look-at-me exhibitionism, the sequins and the mauve feather boa. All down to being a Gemini, he had suggested earlier, so I looked up his star sign on his own 

Apparently Geminis never settle for one benefit when they could end up with two. Hence, I suppose, the twin-track career, the double flat, the matched front doors and the blend of power and acclaim that eluded Andrew Neil for so long. 

No wonder he seems cheerful.