ANOTHER VIEW: Executing the truth

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The Independent Online
The Independent's editorial on my film Executions takes the pompous line that it will not be shown by Britain's broadcasters. Since the film has been completed, we have had offers from British broadcasters who want to show the film. Meanwhile, Channel 4 is to broadcast its own film showing real executions within the next two months, surely against great protest from the Independent.

The Independent suggests that you won't see this sort of footage on the BBC. This is exactly why we made the film. The BBC won't play "My Ding A Ling" on radio and wouldn't broadcast its own film about theIrish nationalist Michael Collins for 25 years. Broadcasters in Britain have been cowed into self-censorship by politicians. They are not brave enough to tell the true story of how 26 million people died this century. The video Executions is, and its makers refuse to bowdlerise the truth.

The rise of sell-through video as a distribution means for investigative documentary is a reflection of the cowardice of traditional broadcasters to make serious investigative documentaries anymore. For the Independent to be fooled by gutless politicians wishing to crush the independent film- making is shocking. The newspaper of good journalism stands for bowdlerised history and video stores full of Hollywood hype.

Executions is being crushed as it tells unpleasant facts - facts Britain's broadcasters are too cowardly to reveal in their own, often pompous and irrelevant history programmes. The video Executions names the real inventor of lethal injection. It tells how 10,000 children died to perfect this "humane" capital punishment, how US technology was harnessed for the Holocaust, how scientists were perverted by governments to become killers. It shows the horror of punishments meted out by modern states in the name of God and law.

While the Independent's favoured broadcasters were making a flag-waving, sanitised version of history for VE day, we made a film that revealed another war that killed more people than World War I.

Executioners have killed 26 million people this century. Executioners will continue to kill more, as long as narrowminded newspapers attack the right of the public to be informed of the truth. That right to know the truth is being defended by only one man in Britain at the moment.

James Ferman, the director of theBritish Board of Film Classification, is the most courageous man in Britain in allowing the public to see the reality for themselves in Executions. Ironically, it is now the chief censor who draws the blue line between ignorance and truth. Politicians and newspapers are striving to keep the public unaware.

Mr Ferman must be supported at all costs if Britain is not to be forced into ignorance by those who wish that truth not be available for sale on the high street.

The author is the writer/producer of `Executions'.

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