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Magazine of the Chartered Institute of Journalists

CIoJ condemns support for terrorism by former Fleet Street editor and professor of journalism ethics

Press Release
Release date: 3 March 2021

The Chartered Institute of Journalists unhesitatingly condemns the justification for supporting terrorism by former journalism ethics professor and Daily Mirror editor Roy Greenslade.

Institute President, Professor Tim Crook said Greenslade’s Sunday Times and British Journalism Review article “What I did in the war’ has clearly caused distress to civilian, journalist and security force victims and their families of ‘The Troubles’ in Northern Ireland.”

Professor Crook said his comments strike at the very heart of professional values in journalism. His article and views undermine respect for the significance of journalistic independence, impartiality, transparency and honesty.

He added: “The violence perpetrated by the Provisional IRA cost the lives of news photographer Ed Henty covering the City of London Bishopsgate truck bomb in 1993 and Daily Express journalist Philip Geddes in the Harrods car bomb of 1983.

“There was nothing accidental about their deaths. They were murdered.”

Professor Crook said: “We have to emphasise that it is professionally incompatible for any journalist, let alone a national newspaper editor and Professor of journalism ethics, to lead a double life of propagandising one side in any armed conflict with a fake identity while at the same time working for news publishers seeking to report on it.”

The Institute believes this is about the safety of journalists as well as trust in the integrity and fairness of reporting and publication coverage.

Professor Crook explained: “A journalist cannot and should not be a double-agent for any government or paramilitary group using violence to further their political ends.”