Politics

Dec 17, 2008

The last, no really, word on Wilfred Burchett

The issue of Wilfred Burchett is not merely a matter of political differences, it instead involves defining the boundary between lawful dissent and treachery, writes Neil James.

Recent exchanges about Wilfred Burchett have seen several of his apparent defenders, such as Simon Nasht (yesterday, comments) and Nick Shimmin (10 December, comments & 12 December, comments), erect various straw men and avoid the real issues surrounding his actions, especially during the 1950-53 Korean War.

Chief of these is the claim that Burchett was "only a journalist who reported from the other side". This attempted defence ignores two key issues: what Burchett did in addition to his reporting and why; and the dubious, at best, motivation, objectivity and quality of most of his post-World War II reporting.

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3 comments

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3 thoughts on “The last, no really, word on Wilfred Burchett

  1. Kevin Herbert

    Yes Neil, it is unfair how quickly polemics and myth can supplant facts in popular discourse: how do you explain Dean et al’s views.

  2. Kevin Herbert

    Yes Neil, it is unfair how quickly polemics and myth can supplant facts in popular discourse: how do you explain Dean et al’s views.

  3. John M

    Well said Neil!
    Crikey!, shame on you for not putting all of this in the email.

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