Saturday, 17 September 2011

The Independent: Letters To The Editor

Johann Hari's apology

There are five reasons why I read The Independent. The least of these is its reporting of world and domestic events, creditable though this is. The four major reasons are Robert Fisk, with whom I always agree; Howard Jacobson, with whom I rarely agree; Yasmin Alibhai-Brown who convinces me to agree with things I disagree with, and then, most important of all, Johann Hari, who shows for me the consequences of agreeing or disagreeing with my own prejudices.
Johann Hari may feel that he has betrayed the high standards of the profession he follows ("I have betrayed my readers' trust", 15 September); that is his prerogative. But I can assure him that he has not betrayed me and many other readers like me.
When you compare the actions to which he confess to those of politicians and bankers who have cheated us, lied to us, deceived us and robbed us while smiling in our faces, his actions pale into insignificance. They smiled at us while they were doing it, and they continue to smile at us even now, without even a hint of an apology ever likely to pass their lips. In contrast, his apology was as heart-warming as it was painful to read, and I thank him for it.
I await his speedy return.

Alan Collinson
Rhos on Sea, North Wales


I supported the stance of The Independent during the Iraq War, at a time when the "dodgy dossier" controversy underlined the malign consequences of presentational deceit.
In this age of distrust, it is vital that commentators are wholly truthful and able to stand by their writing based upon a record of integrity. This is not the case with your columnist Johann Hari, who has been unmasked as an egotistical liar and fraud. Your newspaper will be untrustworthy as long as it employs the discredited Mr Hari.

Iain Paton
Linlithgow, West Lothian

Independent.

One of the many problems that will now dog Mr Hari is that a lot of people will assume he wrote any fawning "Well done the BBC - another winner!" letters like the one above himself.
Career = fucked.

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