A full page in “THE OBSERVER” (7 August 2022) is headlined “Revealed: Britain’s cold war bid to smear Kenyan vice-president.”
Underneath the headline it says “Whitehall dirty tricks operation spread fake news about the leftist politician seen as a threat to UK interestsin the 1960s.”
Under the text, by James Oliver & Nicholas Gilby, is a large photo of Kenya’s then President Jomo Kenyatta and alongside it a photo of Britain’s then Chief of Knavish Tricks, the “Socialist” Prime Minister, Harold Wilson.
The target of the smear, Oginga Odinga doesn’t merit a photo. Perhaps in another 57 years?
Although Jomo Kenyatta had been imprisoned and exiled by the British, he was either by sentiment or by prudence, sympathetic enough to UK and American business/political interests to toe the capitalist/imperialist line. Kenyatta’s local support came from his Kikuyu tribe, Odinga’s from the Luo tribe. Kenyatta and Odinga were both major figures in the struggle against colonialism.
Britain’s Foreign Office propaganda arm, the Information Research Department , targeted Odinga in a three- year campaign run by its dirty tricks department, the Special Editorial Unit (SEU), according to THE OBSERVER.
“Declassified files reveal four ‘black’ operations against Odinga in 1964” says THE OBSERVER. A catalogue of dirty tricks follows.
Odinga’s son, Raila Odinga, is today a candidate for the Presidency of Kenya.
The Observer quotes Professor Scott Lucas, a University of Birmingham specialist in British foreign policy “The story of British propaganda operations in Kenya is a reminder that the days of a declining empire were not so much pomp and circumstance as deception, disinformation and dirty tricks.”
At its heart “it was an effort by those in London to continue to exert control over a former colony well after it had become independent” Professor Lucas said.
Kenya escaped lightly in 1965. The same year the British Ambassador to Indonesia, Sir Andrew Gilchrist, masterminded a black propaganda campaign priming a genocidal coup, and British naval vessels carried some of the murderers between the country’s islands as they went about their business.
Four years later Sir Andrew set in motion the coup that established the Irish Times Trust, making the paper a puppet of the British Foreign Office, which some allege it remains to this day. See my BLOG – “British Diplomacy and The Irish Times Trust.
It claimed that, as Foreign Secretary, David Owen abolished the Information Research Department and the Special Editorial Unit.
Ho Effing Hum.
Aren’t their thumb-prints all over the British media today?
And their DNA created to last forever?