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MI6 media manipulation misinformed you about Saddam Hussein

On Saturday, 27 December 2003 the government of the UK finally admitted that the British secret service, MI6 in particular, used the mass media to disseminate disinformation about Iraq. The campaign was called "Operation Mass Appeal", and is described as "a campaign to plant stories in the media about Saddam Hussein's weapons of mass

This pre-war propaganda was designed influence public opinion and make the conquest of Iraq more palatable. It was a brainwashing programme delivered relentlessly over several years, building up to an irresistible crescendo with accusations repeated every day before and during the invasion. The "news" that we were all exposed to was written to demonise the Iraqi leader and create new fear about old weapons programmes that were destroyed a decade ago.

No wonder people in the US and the UK think they are experts on Saddam Hussein. This is why they all sound so sure about the crimes that Saddam is already guilty of, before the trial has even begun.


Sunday Times (UK), "Revealed: how MI6 sold the Iraq war", 28 December 2003.
[ http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,2087-944831,00.html ]
    THE Secret Intelligence Service has run an operation to gain public support
for sanctions and the use of military force in Iraq. The government
yesterday confirmed that MI6 had organised Operation Mass Appeal, a campaign
to plant stories in the media about Saddam Hussein's weapons of mass
    The revelation will create embarrassing questions for Tony Blair in the
run-up to the publication of the report by Lord Hutton into the
circumstances surrounding the death of Dr David Kelly, the government
weapons expert. [Who exposed the government's pre-war campaign of
propaganda and disinformation about Iraq.]


British Journalism Review. "Britainís security services and journalists: the secret story", Vol 11, No 2, 2000, pp 21-26.
[ http://www.bjr.org.uk/data/2000/no2_leigh.htm ]
    [The following extracts refer to Con Coughlin, who many people think of as an ordinary newspaper executive, journalist, and author. Con works for the Daily Telegraph, and wrote a popular book called "Saddam Hussein: King of Terror". But Con is in fact a propaganda writer working for the British secret service. His links with MI6 were exposed during a libel case.
    Con and others have produced volumes of material demonizing Saddam Hussein, and their stories are repeated again and again in the mass media. The MI6 version of events has therefore become accepted as common knowledge in the West. This is a typical example of state-controlled brainwashing.
    The secret service is like a chronic systemic infection in the mass media network. The propaganda of the Establishment pollutes the daily mass media efflux with disinformation and spin. The opinions of most people in the West are based on deception.]
    The story was written by Con Coughlin, the paper's then chief
foreign correspondent, and it was falsely attributed to a "British
banking official". In fact, it had been given to him by officers of
MI6, who, it transpired, had been supplying Coughlin with material for
    Although Coughlin asked for evidence, and was shown purported bank
statements, the pleadings make clear that he was dependent on MI6 for
the discreditable details about the alleged counterfeiting scam. He
was required to keep the source strictly confidential.
    So, unusually, an MI6 exercise in planting a story has been laid
bare. Now, there is no suggestion that Con Coughlin is dishonest in
his work. He is a perfectly conscientious journalist who I expect did
his best to substantiate his facts and undoubtedly believed in their
truth. But nevertheless, those facts may not have been true. And I
believe he made a serious mistake in falsely attributing his story to
a "British banking official". His readers ought to know where his
material is coming from. When the Sunday Telegraph got into trouble
with the libel case, it seems, after all, to have suddenly found it
possible to become a lot more specific about its sources.

"The Insider" mailing list article, 01 January 2004.

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Tags: iraq, propaganda, disinformation, brainwashing, , MI6, Saddam, Hussein, mass, media, manipulation, lies, MI5, , conspiracy theories.

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