John Pilger

John Pilger, whose death was announced this week, was a journalist whose work would be so precious in reporting on Gaza. He was always a fierce opponent of imperialist lies and propaganda—and was a thorn in the side of liberals as well as conservatives.

The obituary in the Guardian newspaper recorded Pilger saying “journalists in the so-called mainstream bear much of the responsibility” for the devastation and lives lost in Iraq, by not challenging and exposing “the lies of Bush and Blair”.

The Guardian did not say it had itself peddled those lies and supported the invasion, or that it had sacked Pilger in what he called a “purge”. One of his most famous investigations in 1979 was into the mass slaughter in Cambodia.

He didn’t just unmask the horrors of the Pol Pot regime, but also linked deaths to the US war which included the bombing of the country. Pilger said Western governments didn’t want to send aid to Cambodia for fear of upsetting the US.

In an interview with Socialist Worker, Pilger described how “in the US empire, people other than the favoured elite are considered barely human. Americans killed Vietnamese as if they were vermin.” He could have been documenting the truth about Gaza now, a truth that is systematically covered up by the media to serve the world’s ruling classes.

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