John Lydon’s 1978 warnings on Jimmy Savile censored by BBC

This video from Britain says about itself:

Piers Morgan’s Life Stories – Friday 25 September 2015 at 9pm on ITV.

John Lydon discusses what’s in his bag.

From daily The Guardian in Britain:

John Lydon says he was ‘banned from BBC’ over Jimmy Savile comments

The former Sex Pistol says he ‘did his bit’ to alert the public to Savile but that his comments made in 1978 were never aired

Thursday 24 September 2015 11.54 BST

John Lydon has claimed he was banned from the BBC after speaking out against Jimmy Savile.

The former Sex Pistol was referring to an interview he’d given in 1978, during which he had said that Savile was “into all sorts of seediness. We all know about it but we’re not allowed to talk about it. I know some rumours.”

Speaking to Piers Morgan for his Life Stories show, he said: “I’m very, very bitter that the likes of Savile and the rest of them were allowed to continue. I did my bit, I said what I had to. But they didn’t air that.”

He continued: “I found myself banned from BBC radio for quite a while, for my contentious behaviour. They wouldn’t state this directly; there’d be other excuses.”

The band were already in the BBC’s bad books before Lydon’s Savile comments: God Save The Queen received a total ban on radio play from the corporation in May 1977. Lydon didn’t go into the specifics of what the ban entailed, although he said: “Weren’t I right? I think most kids wanted to go on Top of the Pops but we all knew what that cigar muncher was up to.”

Thailand dictatorship banned Orwell’s 1984, now New York Times

King of Thailand in Bangkok hospital on 1 September 2015, while employees kneel for him, photo by EPA

After censorship, self-censorship …

Translated from NOS TV in the Netherlands:

Thai edition of New York Times not published because of article about royal family

Today, 11:42

The publisher of The International New York Times in Thailand did not print today’s edition, because there was an article in it about the future of the Thai royal family. “The article is too sensitive to publish,” said the printer. In Thailand there are strict rules for public discussion about the royal family.

The article discussed the deteriorating health of the 87-year-old King Bhumibol and uncertainty about the survival of the monarchy. It says that the crown prince is known as a playboy and that it will be a chore for him to equal the prestige and status of his father. The newspaper writes that many Thai hope that the daughter of the king, who is much more popular among the population, will succeed the king, but that the law forbids women on the throne.

Lese majeste

Thai subscribers received an email from the newspaper stating that it was the decision of the local publisher to not let the newspaper appear today. “The decision is not supported by The New York Times,” the email says, and readers are refered to the online version of the newspaper.

Overt criticism of the royal family or the monarchy in Thailand can lead to imprisonment up to 15 years for treason. The number of convictions has increased considerably since a military junta in May last year has taken power in Thailand. According to human rights organizations this is part of a larger campaign to silence critics.

See also here.

Fundamentalist religious censorship of novel in New Zealand

This 12 September 2015 video from New Zealand says about itself:

Ted Dawe, author of banned book Into the River, discusses censorship and the inspiration for his work.

His ruling remains in place until the next full meeting of the Review Board, scheduled for October 2.

Into the River, by Aucklander Ted Dawe, centres on a young East Coast Maori boy who wins a scholarship to a boys’ boarding school in Auckland.

In 2013, after it won Book of the Year at the NZ Post Children’s Book Awards, Christian lobby group Family First applied for an R18 classification and shrink-wrap covering.

The group said the book dealt with graphic sexual content, paedophilia, and the misuse of adult power. It glorified the taking of drugs and contained “extensive” use of the “c” and “f” words.

For the next two years, the book bounced between the Classifications Office and the Film and Literature Review Board. It was variously classified as being more suitable for audiences over 16; objectionable to anyone under the age of 14 and, most recently last month, an “unrestricted” read.

That decision, by the Classification Office, prompted Family First to request the interim restriction order – which can, under the Films, Videos, and Publications Classifications Act 1993, be granted solely by the Board of Review president.

Mathieson’s order, granted on September 3, means individuals and organisations (including schools and libraries) who knowingly supply the book, are liable for fines of up to $3000 and $10,000 respectively. Into the River was immediately withdrawn from book stores and by mid-week, was no longer available for purchase in New Zealand in electronic form.

But Mathieson says it’s wrong to refer to his decision as a “ban”.

“It’s an interim restriction. Banning is an emotive word.”

Waikanae-based Mathieson is a QC and active Christian. He said detail about his personal background was “irrelevant”. …

He is the editor of the book Faith at Work, described by Castle Publishing as a “thought provoking symposium discussing the relevance of Christianity in the workplace … Faith goes beyond the church on Sunday. It must impact on every area of life”.


In 2013, censors banned The Everything Marijuana Book. In 1997, Hitchhiking Pizza Boy was outlawed. In 1972, A Sea of Thighs and Big Boobs made it to the forbidden list. Records show that since 1963, some 1289 books have been banned for import, distribution, supply or possession – most because of sex or drug references. These are the most recent:

2013: The Everything Marijuana Book

2013: Here’s Steve

2013: Boys Are Boys

2010: Secrets of Methamphetamine Manufacture 8th Edition

2009: Pleasant Dripping with Sweat

2000: Holiday Snapshots

2000: Eros XXX Women

1999: Topping from Below

1999: Indoor Marijuana Horticulture

1999: Marijuana Botany

‘Will I be burnt next?’ – Into the River author Ted Dawe on book banning: here.

By Tom Peters in New Zealand:

Outrage over banning of New Zealand novel Into the River

19 September 2015

On September 7 New Zealand’s Film and Literature Board of Review announced a temporary ban on the sale and distribution of the young adult novel Into the River by Ted Dawe. The board will make a final decision on the book’s classification next month. Until then anyone who sells, lends or displays it can be fined between $3,000 and $10,000. It has been withdrawn from book stores and libraries.

Board president Don Mathieson QC imposed the “interim restriction” in response to an appeal by the fundamentalist Christian group Family First against the unrestricted rating given to the book by the government’s Classification Office. The Board of Review is a government-appointed body with the power to change classification decisions.

Family First has campaigned against Into the River since it won the top prize at the NZ Post Children’s Book Awards in 2013. The organisation has called for the book to be restricted to people over 18 years old, a position that Mathieson has said he supports. Family First leader Bob McCoskrie told the New Zealand Herald: “It has sexually explicit material and it’s … got the c-word nine times, the f-word 17 times and s-h-i-t 16 times.” He also objected to the depiction of drug use.

The banning is a blatant attack on artistic freedom. It is the latest indication that the ruling elite is responding to growing social inequality and class tensions with increasingly anti-democratic methods.

Mathieson, a conservative Christian known for his opposition to same-sex marriage, has set a dangerous new precedent and demonstrated that he has the power to remove any book from circulation at the stroke of a pen.

The book ban also illustrates the increasing influence of Family First, which is being politically promoted as a means to foster ignorance and bigotry.

Dawe’s novel is the first to be banned in New Zealand in more than two decades. Previously suppressed books include Brendan Behan’s Borstal Boy in 1958 and Vladimir Nabokov’s Lolita, in 1960 (both bans were lifted a few years later). Numerous films have been banned, including recently the horror films I Spit on Your Grave (2010) and Maniac (2013).

The ban has met with shock and outrage from ordinary people. Out of 220 comments on the Herald web site, 185 opposed the ban, with many expressing alarm at the power of the religious right.

One asked: “Have I been transported to 1984? Do we live in a free country or not?”

Another comment declared: “How on earth does a conservative Christian lobby group manage to get books temporarily banned in NZ? Have we gone back into a 1950s time warp and no one has told me?”

A reader on the news web site asked: “Since when does Bob McCoskrie or other religious zealots such as Don Mathieson dictate to the rest of the populace as to what’s good for us based on their own narrow-minded religious views of the world?”

Groups of people protested the ban in Dunedin and Wellington on September 10 by silently reading Into the River in public. Writers have denounced the ban, including Booker Prize winner Eleanor Catton, New Zealand’s poet laureate C.K. Stead, Elizabeth Knox, Patrick Ness, and John Marsden, to name just a few.

Following the backlash, the National Party government has attempted to distance itself from Mathieson’s decision, despite the fact that it appointed him to the Board of Review in June 2010. Internal Affairs Minister Nathan Guy said at the time that Mathieson was “well qualified for this role.”

In the lead-up to the 2014 election Prime Minister John Key and New Zealand First Party leader Winston Peters both appeared at Family First gatherings and gave interviews to Bob McCoskrie.

The corporate media has largely criticised Mathieson’s decision, yet it presents McCoskrie as a legitimate commentator. McCoskrie is a frequent guest on TV and radio, where he rails against gay rights, sex education, abortion rights, books, films and TV shows.

On June 30, 2013, the Herald joined Family First in denouncing the decision to award Best Book to Into the River. “It contains obscenities and shock references that worthwhile literature does not need,” the editorial declared.

Pointing to the authoritarian character of the ban and the influence of Family First, John Boyne, Irish author of The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas, wrote on “In 1933, when Joseph Goebbels listed the books that should not be read by the German people, the fires were built and the works of Hemingway, Freud, Jack London and others went up in smoke. This, the Propaganda Minister declared, would lead to ‘a cleansing of the German spirit…’

“[S]somehow this rag-tag group of angry, ill-informed and frightened conservatives has been allowed to follow in the footsteps of Nazis and the Irish Catholic Church.”

This analogy is entirely appropriate. The world is experiencing the most severe economic crisis since the Great Depression of the 1930s. In every country the ruling class is responding with an assault on living standards at home and preparations for war abroad. To impose this agenda the governments are carrying out sweeping attacks on civil liberties.

Dawe’s novel has been suppressed amid a campaign by the entire political establishment to glorify militarism and nationalism. This includes the grotesque celebrations surrounding the centenary of World War I and attempts by the opposition Labour, NZ First and the Mana Parties to promote anti-Chinese xenophobia.

Access to socially critical works of art is incompatible with the reactionary climate the ruling class is seeking to create. Into the River has evidently been targeted because it addresses issues facing working class youth in a realistic way that has struck a chord with thousands of people.

Writer Bernard Beckett, who was on the judging panel that awarded Dawe’s novel, described it on the blog the Spinoff as “an important work on a great many levels. Deeply moral, extremely well-written and respectful of its audience …

“The protagonist is a young Maori boy on the East Coast, sharp as pin and filled to the brim with potential. He wins a scholarship to a boarding school in Auckland, and from the moment he arrives, understands that this is not his place. Despite his learning and his aptitude, the school won’t be able to welcome him. It’s a story of alienation and bullying, and a story of the way those not offered a place to stand will attempt to carve out their own.”

Another judge, novelist Barbara Else, told Fairfax Media: “The novel’s a tragedy of a talented Maori youth ripped from his whanau [family] and subjected to snobbery and racism. It’s bleak. It’s hard-hitting. The sex scenes are realistic and saddening.”

Even though Dawe’s first novel, Thunder Road, won Young Adult Book of the Year, he struggled to find a publisher for Into the River and eventually had to self-publish. After that novel also won an award, Family First lobbied the Board of Review, which imposed an R14 rating in December 2013, the first time a book had received such a rating.

Dawe wrote in the Guardian: “Prior to this judgement, Into the River was the most-borrowed NZ-written YA novel in the country. After the ruling, it was removed from libraries’ shelves and either placed behind the desk or in the basement stacks … Borrowing dropped to virtually nil.”

After receiving several complaints from teachers and librarians, the Classification Office removed the R14 rating last month, making the book unrestricted until the Board of Review withdrew it from circulation this month.

Dawe, who is a high school teacher, explained that he was inspired by British novelists Alan Sillitoe and Keith Waterhouse, whose works “carried the sharp stink of authenticity.” He set out to write books that would appeal to the sort of boys he taught, “from working class backgrounds, immigrant boys in Brixton in 1970s London; ‘new Australian’ migrants in Marrickville, Sydney; and Māori and Pasifika boys in Auckland.”

The attacks on Into the River are motivated by the ruling elite’s fear of these young people, who it wants to prevent from reading books that might encourage a class understanding of the brutality of capitalist society.

Ukrainian government bans BBC, other journalists

This video from the USA says about itself:

Princeton University professor Stephen Cohen on Ukraine and media blackout / censorship – 10.10.2014

From Associated Press news agency:

Ukraine Bars 3 BBC Journalists From Entering Ukraine

By Nataliya Vasilyeva

Sep 17, 2015, 6:00 AM ET

Ukraine has barred a few dozen reporters, including three BBC journalists, from entering the country as an unspecified security threat.

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko late on Wednesday signed a sanctions list barring nearly 400 individuals from entering Ukraine, including BBC correspondent Steve Rosenberg and producer Emma Wells, both British, and Russian cameraman Anton Chicherov.

This is the first sanctions list against Russia and foreign individuals that Kiev has introduced since a conflict broke out in April 2014 in eastern Ukraine, claiming more than 8,000 lives so far.

The decree which was published on the president’s website said the reporters and media executives on the list presented an unspecified “threat to national interests, national security, sovereignty or territorial integrity.”

It did not specify why the long-serving Moscow-based BBC journalists were singled out but a spokesman for the presidential administration said late Wednesday night that the Ukrainian Security Service would give an explanation on Thursday.

The BBC’s foreign editor, Andrew Roy, described the ban as “a shameful attack on media freedom.”

“These sanctions are completely inappropriate and inexplicable measures to take against BBC journalists who are reporting the situation in Ukraine impartially and objectively, and we call on the Ukrainian government to remove their names from this list immediately,” he said in emailed comments.

Also on the list of the banned journalists are Antonio Pampliega and Angel Sastre, two Spanish reporters who disappeared in Syria in July and are believed to have been kidnapped by the Islamic State group, and two reporters for Russian news agencies in South Africa and Turkey with no clear links to Ukraine.

The Russian news agency Tass on Thursday described the decision to blacklist three of its reporters, one based in Washington, D.C., one in South Africa and one in Moscow, as “odd” since two of the three journalists do not even cover Ukraine. …

The New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists said in a statement that it is “dismayed” by Poroshenko’s actions.

“While the government may not like or agree with the coverage, labeling journalists a potential threat to national security is not an appropriate response,” said the committee’s Europe and Central Asia program coordinator, Nina Ognianova.

Turkish President Erdogan takes selfie at soldier’s funeral, imitating Tony Blair

Turkish President Erdogan takes selfie at soldier's funeral, imitating Tony Blair

Translated from NOS TV in the Netherlands:

Turkish police raid at magazine’s office because of Erdogan selfie

Today, 14:09

The Turkish police have raided the magazine Nokta. The magazine had a photomontage on its cover showing that President Erdogan takes a selfie during the funeral of a Turkish soldier.

The Turkish counterterrorism unit this morning at 8.30 invaded the magazine’s office in Istanbul and seized various documents. The edition with the photograph of Erdogan on the cover was taken from the shops across the country.

Also it was said that the Twitter account of Nokta was closed because of “insulting the president” and “spreading terrorism“. However, at the moment the account is still online.


The photomontage shows Erdogan taking a photograph of himself at the coffin of a Turkish soldier killed in fighting with the Kurdish PKK. By placing the photo Nokta stands accused of helping opponents of the president.

They claim that Erdogan uses the conflict with the PKK to win support for his AK Party. The editors of the magazine say they were inspired by an edited photograph in 2013 of former British Prime Minister Tony Blair. Blair on it takes a selfie near an explosion during the war in Iraq.

Tony Blair selfie while Iraq explodes, by Peter Kennard

This month the Dutch journalist Fréderike Geerdink was arrested in Turkey and deported. She reported on the fighting between the PKK and the Turkish army. She said that she was afraid that journalists in Turkey are at the whim of the military.

Turkish government fights WordPress and Kurds, not ISIS

This video from the USA says about itself:

16 November 2014

Jon Stewart: Turkey: Erdogan helps ISIS at Kobane.

From the Peace in Kurdistan campaign in Britain:

Kurdish message of peace stifled by Turkish censorship

Monday 10th August 2015

The Peace in Kurdistan campaign explains how President Erdogan is more interested in trampling the Kurds than fighting Isis

DAYS ago, the Peace in Kurdistan Campaign’s website was blocked to users in Turkey in the latest government crackdown on Kurdish and pro-Kurdish news and media.

As part of a broad attack on internet freedom, 77 million websites hosted by were temporarily blocked under Turkey’s Internet Law 5651. After WordPress challenged the ban, the Turkish government lifted restrictions on the majority of sites, leaving just five — which included and four other pro-Kurdish sites — inaccessible inside Turkey. WordPress’s appeal to the courts regarding our site and the others is still pending.

The move came as the Turkish air force’s heavy bombardment of Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) sites in northern Iraq and Rojava, the first such strike since 2011, threatened to put a definitive end to the more than two-year peace process.

Using their participation in the US-led anti-Islamic State (Isis) campaign as cover, the Turkish government has taken the opportunity to wage war not against Isis at all, but against the Kurdish movement, human rights defenders, activists and the peace process by breaking the 10th ceasefire called by the PKK in the last 15 years.

What is especially galling for the Kurds is that this new clampdown on freedom of expression, combined with the renewed offensive against the PKK, comes in the wake of the Suruc massacre of young Kurds who were preparing to take part in a voluntary mission to aid the people of Kobane — the city that became a symbol of Kurdish resistance to Isis.

The massacre, carried out by an Isis-inspired suicide bomber, left 33 youths dead and hundreds more badly injured. The Kurds immediately blamed Turkey because of its complicity in aiding Isis — assistance which has been well documented.

However, Turkey’s AKP government has quite cynically used the outburst of popular anger at the massacre as a pretext for launching its attacks on the Kurdish movement, both within the country and across the border, by systematic bombing of PKK camps in Iraq. Hundreds have since been killed and maimed by indiscriminate bombing, including many civilians, according to reports.

At the same time, the Turkish authorities, steered by an increasingly authoritarian President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, have begun attempts to lift political immunity from pro-Kurdish HDP parliamentarians, which will pave the way for their prosecution and possible disqualification from standing for re-election in the event of the president calling a snap general election. This is likely if coalition negotiations fail.

The latest wave of censorship included a temporary ban on Twitter, a platform used by nearly a third of the country’s population. In total 96 sites have been blocked on the grounds they are publishing “terrorist” propaganda. The vast majority of these were pro-Kurdish or leftist political sites.

This duplicity was mirrored in police raids and air strikes that took place the same week, ostensibly part of Turkey’s fight against Isis. Of the 1,050 arrests that took place across Turkey in nationwide “anti-terrorism operations” last week, 137 were alleged Isis sympathisers while 847 were Kurdish activists suspected of links to the PKK. Similarly, on the day the supposed anti-Isis air strikes began, just one sortie was sent to attack Isis targets, while 75 F-16s and F-4E 2020s dropped around 300 smart bombs onto 400 PKK targets in just two days.

For those us familiar with Turkey’s repressive, vague and draconian anti-terrorism legislation, these acts come as little surprise. Over the years we have campaigned for journalists imprisoned for speaking in support of Kurdish rights and for the reinstatement of media outlets after they were repeatedly banned or taken off the air. One such campaign was for the Kurdish-language broadcaster Roj TV, which, although based in Denmark, was forced from the air after the Turkish government agreed to support former Danish PM Anders Fogh Rasmussen’s appointment as Nato secretary-general.

We are well aware that we too are working under the suspicious gaze of an integrated surveillance system with global reach. Our peaceful activities that advocate for the inviolable rights of Kurdish people and a peaceful, negotiated resolution to the conflict are still seen as a threat.

For more information see

Under the guise of fighting ISIS, Turkey’s president is re-igniting a bloody war with the Kurds for his own political purposes: here.

German government attacks bloggers exposing Internet censorship as ‘traitors’

This video says about itself:

German spy leaks website being investigated

30 July 2015

Germany’s federal prosecutors are investigating whether a website has committed treason. reported on plans to expand the country’s domestic surveillance of online communication earlier in the year.

The site says it has received a letter from prosecutors announcing the probe against two of its journalists and an unidentified source.

Translated from NOS TV in the Netherlands:

German prosecutor investigates ‘treason’ by journalists

Today, 19:36

The German Public Prosecution Service is investigating two journalists for possible treason. The two have published on their blog excerpts from secret documents of the Stasi.

Stasi? Well, Google Translate translated as ‘Stasi’ here. However, that was the name of the secret service of the late German Democratic Republic, disbanded in 1990. While the NOS means one of the present secret services of the German Federal Republic, the Verfassungsschutz. Different name? Yes. Different practice? Not always so sure.

The investigation should find out whether the publications in the blog also revealed actual state secrets. In two articles, which were published in February and April, they described plans to expand the surveillance of the Internet. The articles are based on leaked documents.

The investigation focuses on editor Mark Beckedahl, editor Andre Meister and the sources for the articles. Journalists call it an intimidation attempt and an attack on press freedom. “It’s quite long ago that Germany acted against journalists and their sources like this.”

Germany halts treason inquiry into journalists after protests. ‘For the good of media freedom’, Germany’s prosecutor general suspends investigation into reporters who said state planned to boost surveillance: here.

PROSECUTORS dropped their treason investigation of two journalists yesterday, defusing a free-speech crisis at the heart of the German government. Markus Beckedahl and Andre Meister, who had reported on secret plans to expand online surveillance in Germany, were notified via website in July by its founder that they were under investigation, prompting widespread criticism from free-speech advocates: here.