British military press officer sick of lies on Iraq

From The Independent daily in Britain:

Lying about Iraq made me quit, press officer claims

By Kim Sengupta, Defence Correspondent

Wednesday, 5 August 2009

Having to peddle “government lies” about the safety of soldiers in Iraq led to a Ministry of Defence press officer suffering post-traumatic stress disorder, an employment tribunal will hear.

John Salisbury-Baker will claim that he suffered “intolerable stress” through having to “defend the morally indefensible” when responding to media inquiries about the ability of army vehicles such as the “Snatch” Land Rover to protect soldiers.

Mr Salisbury-Baker, 62, says he found it impossible to support the official line on deaths and injuries after seeing the suffering of soldiers’ families. After 11 years of service at Imphal Barracks near York, he could no longer keep working and is taking legal action against the Ministry of Defence (MoD).

The case takes place amid accusations over the government’s attempts to claw back compensation from two injured soldiers, as well as a rising toll of casualties from improvised explosive devices in Afghanistan.

Mr Salisbury-Baker’s partner, Christine Brook, said: “John is an honest, sensitive and moral person, and having to peddle government lies that soldiers in vehicles such as the Snatch Land Rovers were safe from roadside bombs made him stressed.

“He was particularly plagued by the thought that some of the bereaved families he was visiting might have previously believed their loved ones were safe, because of what he himself had said to the media.”

USA: Rachel Maddow Takes on Tom Ridge Over WMD Justification for Invading Iraq, by Heather Tuesday Sep 01, 2009 10:02pm: here.

5 thoughts on “British military press officer sick of lies on Iraq

  1. President’s guards face robbery trial

    Iraq: Court officials have said that five members of President Jalal Talabani’s security detail will go on trial this month for their alleged roles in a deadly bank robbery.

    The five were arrested after the £4.2 million Baghdad heist in July that left eight security guards dead.

    Iraq’s Interior Ministry has sought to portray the robbery as a rogue act, denying speculation that the guards were part of a larger conspiracy to use the money to fund anti-government militias.


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