Hate is an ugly emotion and one that I rarely yield to. But I like to make an exception for Mohammed Fayed. He has done more to damage public life in this country than anyone else I can think of. So the news that he has been questioned over the sexual assault of a fifteen year old girl came as little surprise to those of us who have had reason to follow his disgusting antics over the years.
Of course so far he has only been questioned, so we must not prejudge guilt. But again, I like to make an exeption for Fayed. There are few things I would like to see more than for Fayed finally to get his comeuppance after all these years.
He managed to temprarily ruin the lives of Neil and Christine Hamilton and tried it on with plenty of other politicians of all parties. He thought he could buy the British government. Thankfully the British government proved not to be for sale. He then launched his appalling campaign against the Duke of Edinburgh and promulgated the most outlandish conspiracy theories about the death of Princess Diana.
If Fayed is charged, found guilty and jailed, I will be doing the modern day equivalent of dancing in the streets of Auchtermuchty (copyright Sir John Junor 1973).
Come come Iain, more than Campbell, Mandleson, Blair and now Brown ? And no doubt a few others in that cabal ?
"Hate is an ugly emotion and one that I rarely yield to. But I like to make an exception for Mohammed Fayed. He has done more to damage public life in this country than anyone else I can think of. So the news that he has been questioned over the sexual assault of a fifteen year old girl came as little surprise to those of us who have had reason to follow his disgusting antics over the years."
As an anecdotal story relating to the Phony Pharoh's (copyright Private Eye, alas!) character, I remember when the sainted Princess Diana died. I was drinking with some of Dodi's staffers and a Sun journalist in Camden Town. The journalist had come with 2 pages of faxed Diana jokes (remember when spam came by fax rather than email?) but the Dodi staffers were distraught. Not that their boss had died - he made them work on Christmas day the previous year, not because there was anything to do but because it wasn't a holiday for him and was generally reputed to be arrogant and unpleasant to work for - but because his dad had not been in the car...
And if Fulham got relegated as well, that would be super!
Here, here. It couldn't happen to a nicer Fugger...
Can he then be compulsorily sent back to Egypt?
I personally know one of the MPs many years ago whose promising career as an MP was ruined by this person and nothing would give me greater pleasure to see him get his come-uppance
"He managed to temporarily ruin the lives of Neil and Christine Hamilton."
You have indeed momentarily lost your composure Iain, for I think the record will show that the chief architect of Neil Hamilton's downfall was . . . Neil Hamilton.
I agree, Ian. He really is a vile man.
That's right; all those sleaze stories that ruined the Conservative Party in the mid 90s were the fault of some foreigner and not grubby little MPs and lobbyists keen to take a shilling.
I'm not a fuggin Fayed fan either (the Diana stuff is bonkers and he doesn't sound like employer of the year) - but his allegations fingered more people than just the corrupt former MP for Tatton.
Well, that's one of the most bizarre posts I've ever seen from you, Iain.
Frankly, there are far, far worse people in this country than Fayed, who does a lot for charity behind the scenes, and lost his son in horrible circumstances.
If you seriously think he's 'done more to damage public life in this country than anyone else I can think of', then you aren't thinking too hard...
"Hate is an ugly emotion and one that I rarely yield to."
Then do not do so, as it will do more damage to you than the subject of your hate.
So in your ideal world would you lock up anyone you don't like, Iain?
I find it terrifying that an aspiring politician has such a cavalier attitude towards jailing their enemies.
Mr Al-Fayed has not be shown to have done anything illegal, but you want him punished regardless.
'Damaging public life' is not a crime, it never should be, and it is a far too subjective a concept for it ever to be workable even in your wildest dreams.
Duncan, please explain where I say I would like Fayed to be jailed if he is innocent. But there are plenty of other misdemeanours which can be brought to the table.
Your first sentence is pathetic. I never said any such thing.
Hatred is an entirely correct and good emotion/action when applied to the right subject (e.g. paedophilia), just as love is a disgusting and wrong emotion/action when applied to the wrong subject (e.g. paedophilia).
So you needn't make excuses.
Any further thoughts on HFE bill?
Last week's Private Eye has some details of how the credit crunch may affect the nation's favourite grocer, & I am expecting him to feature prominently in the next issue with regard to his latest troubles... possibly a cover-gag.
Gosh Iain I hope you never get called for jury service...guilty guilty guilty.
Hate is an ugly emotion and it brings out the worst in people.
I feel nothing but indifference towards Al Fayed. Indifference is far more constructive. It doesn't consume your soul.
Detestable as he is, and I cannot think of anyone much more detestable, he is innocent until proven guilty.
He is going through this on the word of some adolescent female. Have you met any adolescent females recently, Iain?
Too many "children" can claim sexual assault, remain anonymous, and ruin a life.
I do find your position a wee, wee bit untenable on this one.
You would take more joy out of seeing him jailed than you would with any other person found guilty of an equivalent crime. This can only be because you feel he should be punished for his previous actions that you disapprove of.
Fayed is a git, but Neil Hamilton did it to himself. Don't make excuses for him.
May I suggest your comments about the man in question are rather OTT.
Are you suggesting he is worse than Gary Glitter.. who at least has been convicted of what Fayed is accused of?
As for his ruining of Conservative MPs , may I remind you Hamilton was judged to have lied to his own Chief Whip...ete etc.
And as for ranting about the Duke of Edinburgh, he is clearly deeply upset by the death of his son. Is that unnatural? Nope. Are his comments about the Duke credible? Nope. Are Dennis Skinner's rants about the monarchy credible?
Personally I dislike the man. But I find your article reminisent of Peter Mandelson at his best - or is it his worst?
There's loads more detestable people and harmed this country.
I would start with Heath - sadly he didn't live long enough to get his just deserts.
I've had my disagreements with you over the years Iain, but we are 4-square on this one. Let us know when the party is please!
I tell you - I am innocent and I've been set up.
I knew all along that it was Prince Philip squeezed in to one of his daughter's old Benenden uniforms. All I did was play along with the joke. He'll stop at nothing to silence me, but it won't work I tell you.
From my reading of what has been reported, an assault has been alleged and the police are investigating. That is as it should be.
But Mr Al Fayed is apparently co-operating with that enquiry and wasn't even arrested, let alone charged, let alone tried and convicted of anything. Yet the police see fit to "unofficially" disclose his name to the press.
This may well prove to be an allegation without foundation, but the disclosure to the press invites lurid speculation based on nothing more than the fact that a man has answered some questions at a police station.
I totally disapprove of this kind of smearing of reputations by coppers who think there are a few drinks available for breaching confidentialities. That goes for everyone against whom an allegation is made, regardless of their notoriety, celebrity status, wealth, influence or lack of it.
The Phoney Pharoh has been playing with fire for a long time with all his accusations against the Royal family. I wouldn't be surprised if he doesn't claim it's all an MI5 plot to incriminate him, but then again, maybe it is! If so, well done chaps and keep up the good work.
Fayed seems like a vile individual, I'll give you that. But many of you in public life are. I'm disgusted, for example, that you never speak out about the sickening homophobia that Guido encourages and condones. Don't think that entitles me to wish great ill on you though.
Interesting that people will still say that Neil Hamilton "did it to himself" as the person who was solely responsible for all the evidence against Neil Hamilton is accused of a far more serious crime, with at least as much evidence.
Evidence Fayed gave against Hamilton condemns Fayed himself as being dishonest. Fayed who is already known to have come by the asset for which he is known dishonestly. Fayed who was declared in court to have been completely dishonest in his evidence about the death of his own son.
So where is the actual evidence against Neil Hamilton? I don't like him or his wife, but his case discredits only Fayed.
I can understand you're hatred of Al Fayed but surely you're not hoping a 15 year old girl was sexually assaulted?
Bloody hell Iain - that was an exocet. Personally I just think he's disgusting - oh, and i've had to mute Joey Barton all morning. Actions not deeds.
Bad time to mention West Ham eh?
This means that - if true - a 15 year old girl has been abused by a man. Yet the concern here is a tone of glee that Fayed is going to get 'comeuppance' for being able to bribe Tory MPs. I think your priorities are misplaced.
Spot on Iain as always!! We usually do agree.
Ironic that you publish this before getting excited about the Orwell Prize. Hardly responsible journalism is it.
Let's not be too jocular about this. Fidler Fayed has been questioned, under caution, about alleged paedophile offences. Yes it will be delightful if he is sent down (and fellow prisoners don't exactly take well to nonces, I hear), but for one girl there has (allegedly) been a terrible sexual ordeal at the hands of the aged Egyptian.
P.S. beat you to it by about, oh, six hours!
Iain, Iain, Iain....Calm down, dear, he's only a shopkeeper! I would suggest that no-one on here knows any of the details of the alledged crime that Mo was "quizzed" (a lovely tabloid word that) about by the plod. Despite the best endeavours of countess politicians in this country (not least from the current Govt.)you're presumed innocent until...etc. etc. As far as I know, no charges have been proferred against Mo (and even if they had he's still innocent until found guilty at a trial).
And, if you're going to have a go at him because of his Fulham connections, perhaps have a look closer at some of the owners of your beloved WetSpam! Hardly paragons of virtue were they?
Your post seems quite out of character and I wonder if there is more to it.
Many people in the country (including me) have little time for Fayed and if he is found guilty I will not shed a tear for the man.
Regarding your post I must make a couple of points in his favour however.
a)The Hamiltons were certainly complicit in their own downfall.
b)The Paris conspiracy theories came from a man who had tragically lost his son.
Is there something else he has done to you personally I wonder?
Could you confirm or deny that the motivations for your hatred of the man has been fully disclosed?
It seems that you've gone completely over the top this time.
Have you been on the sauce?
There are many people who have caused a lot more damage to public life than Fayed.
So he's exposed a few corrupt politicians in his time and believes his son's death was part of a larger conspiracy. Hardly reasons to hate him with such venom.
And to say that you're not surprised he has been arrested on suspicion of a sexual assault must be pushing the limits of libel. I'd be careful if I were you.
Iain, you go too far by talking about hate. If bloggers and social media are to win credibility they need to be more restrained and analytical. It is silly to talk about hating Castro, Mugabe, Hitler and Stalin, because it serves little purpose, even if one despises them.
Moreover, we should - regardless of what we think of Mr Al Fayed - hope that he is innocent. After all, it is horrifying to think that a 15-year-old girl has been sexually assaulted. The humanity in us should hope it is all a misunderstanding, or has some other rational and less controversial explanation.
As a leading blogger others look up to, I expected more of you.
I have found this blog to be going down hill for some time (certainly 6 months) but still read it as it is one of only 3 blogs on my favourites list (Pol Betting + Guido's the others).
One thing putting me off is the barage of lists and comment on reader surveys which i really think is just Z.
However, this post was frankly, Nutty. Libel is the least of your worries; I would be more concerned about your judgement (esp. for a budding columnist/t.v. contributor)! The more you write in this vein the more marginal your site becomes and the appeal of this blog originally is that it was a fairly Conservative gossipy but earnest general political blog.
However, given this blog is becoming more partizan by the week, I have fast run out of reasons to refer to it daily; as such, I am going to take Guido's advice and ask for a full refund (as well as take you off my favourites list)!
I do suggest though you read through a sample of 10-20 posts (inc. lists/similar) from 18 months ago and compare it to a sample list from the last couple of weeks. You might surprise yourself.
Big Andy, I am sorry you feel that way. Seeing as my readership has increased by 50% in the last year I must be doing something right even if I am not pleasing you!
A blog is supposed to be opionated, otherwise why would anyone read it. As for partisanship, I have never made it a secret of my political leanings, but to say I am always partisan is risible.
S & M porn sites have increased their visitors over the past year... that doesn't mean their quality has improved...
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