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July 17, 2011

Brooks Arrested - Next A Murdoch?

The Guardian reports:

The Metropolitan police said a 43-year-old woman was arrested at noon Sunday, by appointment at a London police station. Brooks, 43, resigned on Friday as News International's chief executive. She is a former News of the World editor.

Brooks is due to give evidence before MPs on the culture select committee on Tuesday. An arrest by appointment on a Sunday by police is unusual.

The police is getting nearer to the core of the criminal enterprise. It is pretty clear that other within News Corp hierarchy were aware of the illegal communication intercepts and police bribery by the Murdoch media.

So who's next? A Murdoch?

Update: More analysis from the Guardian:

The arrest of Rebekah Brooks in relation to phone hacking and corruption drags News Corporation deeper into crisis.

It must surely mean that the police investigation is edging closer to James Murdoch, who has been head of all News Corporation's businesses in Europe and Asia since 2007. He personally approved payments to civil litigants against the News of the World in settlement of their cases – deals that involved gagging clauses that appears to have prevented them discussing potential criminal activity in public.

Hmm - so James is now the target for paying hush money, not Rupert who certainly knew about that too   and who is the real ideologue behind the criminal enterprise?

For those who love "it's the Jews" conspiracy stuff an old piece from the New York Sun via Xymphora:

The pro-Israel outlook of the Wall Street Journal and many News Corp. outlets could waver if one of Rupert Murdoch's sons, James Murdoch, takes the helm of the publishing and broadcasting company, a new book suggests.

The just-published diaries of a communications director for Prime Minister Blair, Alastair Campbell, indicate that James Murdoch launched into a foul-mouthed tirade that suggested that the behavior of Palestinian Arabs was justified by their poor treatment by Israelis.
Advocates for Israel expressed distress yesterday at the report of James Murodch's stance on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. "Certainly, it's troubling," a spokesman for the Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America, Alexander Safian, said. "It's a little upsetting to hear that perhaps a son who might eventually have a lot of power is not favorably inclined towards Israel."

Posted by b on July 17, 2011 at 09:52 AM | Permalink


I am not optimistic that the Murdochs or even their top henchmen will end up suffering any serious consequences. The police and Parliament have to look like they are taking some sort of action now to quell the public outrage over this, but I haven't seen any sign that any officials or members are truly outraged themselves over it. Plus the Murdochs probably still have a lot of dirt on people that could be inconveniently publicized in various ways if politicians start to get too inquisitive or indignant. And of course, they still have a lot of money.

Posted by: Maxcrat | Jul 17, 2011 10:56:12 AM | 1

Well Brook's arrest means that she cannot appear before the select committee on Tuesday because it may prejudice her.

I expect James Murdoch will be arrested "by appointment" maybe at noon tomorrow, which will prohibit his attendance.

Rupert, on his own on Tuesday, no way.

The powers that be are swinging into action, and expect the blowback.

Posted by: Cloned Poster | Jul 17, 2011 3:03:09 PM | 2

Well, there are already complaints that Brooks was arrested today, preventing her appearance before the committee on Tuesday, rather than on Wednesday. I would think those complaints will swell. If it was a trick to prevent her appearing, it was poorly thought out, as everyone is now suspicious.

In the latest news, Stephenson, the chief of the Metropolitan police, has just resigned.

I see the point about James Murdoch and Israel. But this affair is snowballing so fast. It may reach R. Murdoch himself, and the British prime minister, Cameron. Both significant supporters of Israel. Personally I think that Murdoch père is finished. They talk about News Corp. as a one-man band. I doubt that any of the offspring will be able to handle things in the same way.

But the British govt. is also in danger. Cameron is seriously damaged.

This affair is far from finished. No-one knows where it will end. The conventional damage-limitation actions haven't succeeded.

Posted by: alexno | Jul 17, 2011 3:33:47 PM | 3


Well, you clearly haven't been paying attention - this is a MASSIVE political scandal in the UK, and a global scandal for News Corp. I'm currently watching the Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, being grilled at a press conference over prior remarks made in defence of News International/hostility to the Guardian and the BBC.

A quick review of the bodies: News Corp/News International has lost Brooks, Hinton, Crone, Myler to resignation and there are an ever-increasing number of current and former NOTW reporters/editors who have been arrested. Do you really think that loss of office and the prospect of criminal proceedings in the UK, and possibly in the US, don't constitute serious consequences?

Andy Coulson has had to resign as Cameron's press secretary, the Met commissioner resigned yesterday ( and in his public statement stabbed Cameron in the front, back, limbs and genitals ), and a deputy Met commissioner has resigned today.

CP. Brooks' arrest in no way prevents her from making an appearance at the house committee tomorrow; it may crimp some of her answers, it may not; both Murdoch pere and fils will be in attendance. Whilst there have been some eyebrows raised about the timing of the arrest, she hasn't actually been charged........ yet; my guess is that there's going to be an almighty chargefest in October.

Posted by: dan | Jul 18, 2011 9:59:47 AM | 4

It seems that Boris Johnson, the mayor of Landon, wants Cameron out (for hiring a major NOTW hack as press secretary) and is aiming for Cameron's job.

More popcorn please ...

Posted by: b | Jul 18, 2011 12:24:14 PM | 5

Just said to self, "Boris is going for it."

Posted by: rjj | Jul 18, 2011 12:33:26 PM | 6

Not to worry, his political operatives will put a lid on the charm in order to appeal to the dour, surly & peevish demographic. That should limit his chances.

Posted by: rjj | Jul 18, 2011 12:40:58 PM | 7

it probably 'is the jews' as they have considerable influrnce and control over govts and media: consider This fellow Bernard Henri Levy:

Posted by: brian | Jul 18, 2011 5:36:32 PM | 8

More popcorn please.
With Mr Plod and the UK Parliament (apparently) in Murdoch's pocket this could still go either way. However, the complexities will make the emerging peripheral issues hard to manage. Rupert and his Home Team did a respectable job of bamboozling the UK parliament. However, their denial of any personal knowledge of wrong doing by their UK employees virtually guarantees an external and official investigation into NewsCorp in the US, and probably Australia.

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Jul 19, 2011 10:03:14 PM | 9

What about the ‘parliamentary expenses’ scandal in Britain? A limited hang-out yet it was a real threat nonetheless and had a consequent effect on British politics.

All that would have represented a break between the media and the pols, and would have made the pols wildly furious - accusations and revelation of widespread financial graft in terms that the electorate can understand - taxpayers shelling out for spa perks and manor renovation etc. are quite different from ‘regular’ sex scandals aimed at individuals. The sex scandal stuff (or personal failings such as drunk driving, etc.) is used as a potential threat to keep everyone in line. Attacking the upper pol strata as a whole is an entirely different level. Up!

The rumblings of strife between these two bodies has thus been brewing for a while. (?)

Perhaps what we see here is simply a re-setting of power balance between the two, with the pols attempting to re-conquer lost clout, using their cards, to diminish the hold of the media and the perpetual threat of being ejected or eliminated as pols.

Neither party (pols-media) wants to give up any advantages so the result will be that Murd’s empire is scaled down, with the pols having more authority, influence, command, snooty-nosed, for now. Then all will limp on as before....

Special commissions/enquiries/ parliamentary or not, in GB are just sops for the public. Correction: they represent papering over by the PTB for their own perception of their own legitimacy, reassurance, and so on. Very few ppl reads them or take them into account. See e.g. the Hutton Report on the death of David Kelly.

There is the crux. There have been whistleblowers galore, nobody pays attention, everyone seems fine with following the media’s lead to flap jaws about this or that scandal, and nothing follows, ppl just go on with their lives.

Posted by: Noirette | Jul 22, 2011 12:04:40 PM | 10

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