WEASEL WORDS

The Independent on Sunday is on a weasel hunt - to expose the fibs, lies, and obfuscations used by the powerful to justify and excuse themselves. E-mail us at weaselwords@ independent.co.uk. Or write to 1 Canada Square, London E14 5DL. Here is a choice of Weasels of the Week:

"She wanted people with children to be aware ... to get the truth across to the biggest possible audience." - Max Clifford on the motive of his client, Mrs X, who accused Gary Glitter of sexually abusing her as a child. The News of the World reputedly offered her pounds 25,000 for her story if Glitter were convicted.

13 November

"I have had a bit of flu recently and that's laid me low." - Mo Mowlam after The Mirror's story claiming she hated her new job as Cabinet enforcer. - `Independent', 12 November

"Vodaphone AirTouch continues to evaluate a broad range of opportunities to participate in the further consolidation of the global wireless market including possible ways to develop Vodafone AirTouch's existing long standing relationship with Mannesmann." - Vodaphone news release after reports that the firm is preparing a pounds 60m hostile bid for the German company.

12 November

"We will ensure that pensioners have a voice at the heart of government." - Gordon Brown's pre-election promise, published on the day the mini- budget gave pensioners a 75p weekly rise.

`The Mirror', 11 November

"I'm afraid it's tradition." - A spokeswoman from the Foreign Office on why the Gurkhas would again be snubbed at the remembrance service at the Cenotaph in Whitehall, despite the fact that thousands gave their lives fighting in the British army.

`The Mirror', 9 November

Research: JONATHAN THOMPSON

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