Magazine article The Spectator

The Art of Propaganda

Magazine article The Spectator

The Art of Propaganda

Article excerpt

Psychological warfare was used with great success by the BBC in its broadcasts to Germany during the second world war. Sir Hugh Greene, later to become a director general, ran the campaign, and in his slim volume The Third Floor Front he defined it as `the attempt to impose your own way of thinking, your own view of the situation, on the enemy's fighting forces and civil population and then, this having been achieved, lead them to behave in the way you desire'.

The BBC has not lost the art of propaganda; it practises it regularly in the name of political correctness on Radio Four's The Archers, and on Out This Week, a weekly homosexual and lesbian programme on Radio Five Live. In recent years, The Archers has embraced every leftish or righton cause you can imagine: feminism, single mothers, organic farming, women priests, the environment, wicked landlordism and now homosexuality. Its tone is anti-tobacco, anti-business and sometimes antifarmer. It's been hijacked by people who are now doing to us what Greene did to the Germans: they want us to behave in the way they desire. A current story-line is a perfect example. It involves the queer landlord of the Cat and Fiddle pub, a Welshman called Sean. He's portrayed as kind, thoughtful and friendly.

Another character, Sid Perks, the landlord of the rival pub, the Bull, was once decent and fair-minded but is now depicted as a nasty homophobe because he's uneasy about Sean. We heard how Sean gave up the captaincy of the cricket team for a day to attend the recent gay pride rally. There was barely a mention of the pro-hunting and country rally until the press commented on this odd use of priorities for a country soap. The producers then hastily slotted in some sound from the rally on the day.

A listener to Radio Four's Feedback (Friday) complained that whilst there was plenty about Sean's homosexuality there's been little about `the subject that dare not speak its name - hunting'. A clue to the producers' approach came in an article in the Mail on Sunday by Graham Harvey, the programme's agricultural story editor. Harvey wrote that he's always thought hunting was 'a pretty grim business -prime candidate for the chop under any government with even half a conscience'. Although he made some fair points about the damage caused by intensive farming, it was clear that he and his producers are using The Archers to brainwash listeners to their way of thinking.

If, as reported, Farming Today on Radio Four is to be merged with the Today programme with the emphasis on ecology and conservation and less on farming, farmers will no longer have their own programmes but homosexuals will in Out This Week. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.