Friday, 9 March 2018

Panorama or Propaganda?

More in hope than expectation, we waited to see if Gemma O’Doherty would produce a follow-up to her unexpectedly thin, in terms of new content, article in February, on the Madeleine McCann case.

We have shown that in terms of importance it’s really thick and has caused shock-waves that are still rocking the underground in this case.

As we thought, it wasn’t intended to be the first of a series and nothing more has been written or tweeted by Gemma on this subject. However, there is something we hope she will consider if she ever decides to revive her interest in the subject. Or rather, somebody.

The person is Steve Anderson, producer of BBC “Panorama - Madeleine McCann 10 Years On” shown in May 2017. Gemma’s important piece of information was that the BBC had made an untrue statement in the documentary when claiming, as in Richard Bilton’s spoken narrative that Mr Smith, an important witness in the case, had changed his mind about his sighting.

From Gemma O’Doherty’s article published in paper edition of the Village Magazine, on Feb 3 2017: “Maddie: did the BBC bend the truth?

“The BBC even went as far as to make this claim. In a Panorama programme broadcast in May 2017 to mark the 10th anniversary of Madeleine’s disappearance, presenter Richard Bilton told viewers that the Smith’s had changed their mind about seeing Gerry McCann and now believed they had seen someone else.

In recent weeks, I have spoken to Mr Smith at his home in Drogheda. He told me he continues to stand by everything he said to the police in 2007. At no point did he withdraw his statement or change his mind about the sighting.

He is frustrated by media claims that he now says he was mistaken and remains 60-80% convinced that the man he saw that night was Gerry McCann.

After the BBC programme was broadcast, Martin contacted Panorama and informed them of their inaccuracy but the broadcaster failed to correct the record despite its public service remit.

Last month, I asked the BBC why they had wrongly suggested that the Smith sighting had been withdrawn and if they were willing to correct their error at this late stage.

I received a reply acknowledging that they had indeed broadcast an inaccuracy. They agreed to update the Panorama programme on their iPlayer to reflect the correction. They say the mistake was made in good faith but they have failed to explain how they came to make such a fundamental error and why they did not check if their story about the Smiths was correct before they aired the programme.”

As the result of Gemma O’Doherty’s intervention, the BBC corrected this error by removing the offending words from their documentary, although they didn’t publish a written statement to this effect on the video itself, as they did for the error relating to describing the Madeleine Fund as a charity, when it wasn’t. There are other online versions of the documentary which are still available with the original wording and we have a transcript of Richard Bilton’s original version on our blog post “BBC Panorama II”:

At 20.17, Bilton voice over: “The Portuguese had built their case about what happened in apartment 5a but it soon came tumbling down. Take that sighting by the Smith family. It couldn't have been Gerry because so many witnesses placed him at the Ocean Club at the same time. The Smiths themselves now believe they saw someone else.

We know from Walkercan1000 on Twitter that he also claimed to have spoken to Mr Smith. He calls Gemma O’Doherty a liar, saying that she never spoke to Mr Smith and that the correction by the BBC had taken place before she had contacted them.

Walkercan1000 also claims that he had spoken to Mr Smith himself, at an unspecified time. To our knowledge, he has not been publicly challenged by Gemma O’Doherty, who may never even have heard of him, even though she is aware of “armchair detectives” who comment on the case and has demonstrated a familiarity with various online YouTube publications relating to the Maddie case.

If Gemma O’Doherty does decide to follow up the case, whether publicly or privately, we suggest she looks at the role of the producer of the programme, Steve Anderson, who was happy to simply repeat what had been written in the press about Mr Smith changing his mind.

The definitive statement about Mr Smith changing his mind was made in the Times published on Oct 27 2013, by Heidi Blake and Jonathan Calvert, “Madeleine clues hidden for five years”.

In a report seen by the Times, Oakley, private investigators for the McCanns, had travelled to Ireland to interview the Smith family and had produced 2 efits. They found Smith “helpful and sincere” and had recommended the efits be released without delay. The article caused a stir because it was said that the McCanns had withheld the efits from the police for 5 years, later corrected by the Times in an apology. The efits had, in fact, been handed to the Portuguese police and Leicester Police by October 2009 and copy of the report and efits were passed to the Metropolitan Police in August 2011.

What was seen by some as an encouraging break in the support for the McCanns in a more reputable newspaper was nothing of the sort. What was overlooked was the conclusion of Oakley that Madeleine had probably died in an accident after leaving the apartment and more importantly, the following statement made by the journalists: 

“There was an uncomfortable complication with Smith’s account. He had originally told the police that he had recognised something about the way Gerry McCann carried one of his children which reminded him of a man he had seen in Praia da Luz.

Smith has since stressed that he does not believe that the man he saw was Gerry and Scotland Yard do not consider this a possibility.”

Nothing unequivocal was expressed here. “Stressed”, rather than said or explained is a strong word and although Scotland Yard’s words are not in inverted commas, it suggests they had given this opinion directly to the reporters. This was taken up by other newspapers in the following days, as reflected by Neil Sears in the Daily Mail on Oct 28 2013 “Why were Maddie suspect E-fits kept SECRET for five years? Images and evidence of sighting uncovered by private detectives were suppressed”:

“The McCanns are now fully behind the fresh police drive and release of the E-fits – but five years ago they were reluctant to issue them, possibly in part because witness Mr Smith’s account seemed inconsistent and unreliable.

Months after the disappearance and after seeing Gerry McCann on TV, Mr Smith told police that he thought the man he saw carrying a girl around Madeleine’s age at the very time she went missing reminded him of Gerry McCann himself.

Mr Smith has reportedly since withdrawn that claim – just as Portuguese police have officially told the McCanns they are no longer suspects for their daughter’s disappearance.


But shortly after Mr Smith told police Mr McCann may have been the man he had seen carrying a little girl, a friend of the McCanns said: ‘Look at the facts. This man sees an individual carrying a child on the night Maddie vanished.

‘He waits 13 days to report this to the police, going back to Ireland in the meantime. At this stage he admits he has no idea who the man is. Almost four months go by before, after seeing him on TV, he feels that it could be Gerry.

‘The truth is that this is part of the victimisation of Gerry and Kate which has gone on from the very beginning by the Portuguese.’”

We are assuming the friend of the McCanns referred to may be the usual code for Clarence Mitchell. The friend makes it very clear there is no credibility to be given to Mr Smith’s account, which has somehow, been blamed on the Portuguese. How on earth were the Portuguese able to manage to persuade Mr Smith to say that the man he saw looked like Gerry McCann?

What link might there be between Mitchell and Steve Anderson?

PR Week Profile: Clarence Mitchell, spokesman for the McCann family” published on Nov 28 2007 by Hannah Marriott.

Following a few paragraphs of high praise for Mitchell and his dangerous assignments in Iran and Iraq (really!?)  we learn that he is “vehemently convinced of the McCanns’ innocence” and that he is crusading to “right what he perceives as a real injustice”. No ambivalence here- his mission is clear.

He goes on to say that the Portuguese police had decided they were involved and planted stories which were picked up by the British press. Something we are sure Mitchell would never do – no, no, never!

Steve Anderson, the then creative director of Mentorn Media and the executive director of the November 2007 Panorama Special: The Mystery of Madeleine McCann, “went so far as to say this was the job that Mitchell was ‘meant to do’”, according to Hannah Marriott.

A first crossing of paths between the McCanns’ spokesman and the documentary media?

Steve Anderson, according to the Independent article by Rob Brown published Mar 9, 1998 “Nepotism? Don't even think about it” is a native of Liverpool and describes his background as working class young man  who achieved a university education and which is also said in the article from Broadcast Now, by Katherine Rushton from June 4, 2009,“Steve Anderson, Mentorn Media”. We have no evidence that he knew the McCanns before the Madeleine case, but he may have identified with them, coming from a similar background, in a way which influenced his decision about how to present their case. 2 years later, however, he was involved in another documentary.

Courtesy of Joana Morais’ blog in April 2009 “McCann New Documentary: Gerry McCann in Portugal (Updated)”:

Gerry arrives in Lisbon in the company of British reporters and an ITV production team, to produce a reconstitution of May 3rd with actors playing the roles of the McCanns and their friends. Apparently it’s a joint ITV Channel 4 production. The team have produced some works for BBC Panorama.

The team had been given a great deal of access to footage by the McCanns, having followed them since January. The ITV controller of current affairs and documentaries, Jeff Anderson (Steve’s brother) said the channel would donate £10,000 to the fund.

“Steve Anderson, executive producer at Mentorn Media, said: “Amid all of the controversy, what should be remembered is that a little girl is still missing and her family is trying its best to find her.

“We have been with Kate and Gerry McCann as they have pushed for a better system across Europe to help stop child abduction. They are determined to do whatever they can to make sure that what happened to Madeleine doesn’t happen to another child.

“They also speak frankly and honestly about Madeleine’s disappearance which is undoubtedly one of the biggest stories of the past 12 months.””
 (and probably one of the most lucrative – our words)

Emma Loach worked as a development producer at Mentorn became a producer/director at the age of 34 and worked with Steve Anderson. As the article from Broadcast Now by Katherine Rushton mentioned above says:

“Anderson has masterminded a string of access- based docs on the McCanns’ hunt for Madeleine, for the BBC, Channel 4 and ITV. Proof, surely, that must-have content still wins commissions.

Both types of programme rely on Mentorn’s ability to secure access. Anderson makes sure he has the right staff to do this he hired the director, mother of three Emma Loach, to forge a relationship with Kate McCann) but also plays the long game, entering a two-way relationship with his subjects whether calculatingly or by accident.”

Emma Loach fulfilled her brief very well. When she appeared as a witness for the McCanns in their case against Mr Amaral in September 2013,  we learn, courtesy of Anne Guedes that she gave evidence to state that she first met the McCanns in 2008 in order to make the first documentary “Madeleine, One Year On” and that “Since then their professional relationship has expanded to that of friendship and to the extent that she sees the family including the twins on a regular basis.” [note: the blog was unable to find the link to this video in full, only this snippet of it and its transcript]

She  later confirmed that she was the documentary maker of both the May 2008 documentary 2 “Madeleine, One Year On” (ITV) and May 2009  “Madeleine was here” (Channel 4)  In the first documentary , she says she didn’t use the word abduction. When asked by Isabel Duarte if the documentaries are based on the McCann couple’s thesis (the abduction), she answered that in the second documentary an investigator says there are many theories but they investigate it on the basis it was an abduction.

When asked by Guerra y Paz’s lawyer if she knew Mr Amaral’s  book was published in the UK, Emma Loach answers that she saw it in bookshops. After some further questions, she leaves the witness box upset. Possibly because she could not have seen the book in any UK bookshop and realised her error?    

By 2009, information from the PJ files was publicly available, so by the time of the reconstitution programme referred to in the court proceedings, the documentary makers had obviously decided which side to take in the presentation of the story, in the light of this information.

Going back in time, the next Panorama programme was in November 2007, as per our “BBC Panorama I” and “BBC Panorama II” posts and was presented by Richard Bilton.

On this occasion, there was a row between the producer, David Mills (not Steve Anderson on this occasion), and the editor Sandy Smith, as said in the Guardian article by David Rose published on Nov 25, 2007 “Panorama walk-out over McCann film”. Mills resigned and the programme went ahead with the editor’s script. Mills had been given access to a video diary shot by Jon Corner and the footage acquired by Mills had led to the BBC getting the commission.  Mills had wanted the programme to criticise the PJ for a campaign of disinformation and the local press for spreading rumours. He had concluded the allegations against the McCanns were baseless, the DNA evidence weak and the discrepancies in statements meant very little. The resulting programme was more critical of the McCanns than was originally intended, but Mitchell spoke to Bilton during the making of the programme and no doubt exerted his usual influence, as stated in this article:

“Clarence Mitchell, the former BBC reporter who is the McCanns' spokesman, said Kate and Gerry were 'content' with the broadcast version and accepted that events meant it had to change. He said they had spoken to Bilton and told him they considered the film to be 'fair'.”

This was all before the release of the PJ files and Mr Amaral’s book, so who was the source of Mill’s supposedly reliable information that everything was being set up against the McCanns by the Portuguese police? It’s not possible to determine if the family video was made available because Mills was sympathetic to their cause or whether he was required to present a sympathetic account in order to have access to the material, but this raises questions about the independence of the visual media in broadcasting documentaries, which the public expect to be more balanced in presentation.

Anderson and Loach had unrivalled access to the McCanns, so much so that Loach became their friend, meeting them regularly. So how much reliance can we place on any of these documentaries to provide a dispassionate account of both sides of the case? Was the Portuguese side of the case ever given a fair hearing?

Quoting from “Documentary, Polemic, and Propaganda”  by David Hopcroft

“A ‘documentary’ carries with it a suggestion of a reasonable degree of impartiality. It suggests journalism, as objective as possible in service of explanation, not argument. A polemic is a deliberate use of carefully selected evidence in the narrow service of a particular point of view. It isn’t even really even journalism, which is intended to develop reasoned arguments to stimulate reasoned debate. It’s commentary with the intent of distorting the debate towards a singular conclusion.”

By all means, make a polemical programme, called “The McCanns are Innocent” if that’s the intention. At least then, we are all clear about the agenda.

When Steve Anderson produced the “Panorama - Madeleine McCann 10 Years On” documentary, he had already decided where he stood on the issue.  However, there  also appeared what could be described as limited hangout by Richard Bilton,  when he told the viewers that he had been asked to spy on Robert Murat by someone from the McCann camp, although not the McCanns themselves, as said in the Daily Mail article “BBC reporter claims he was offered exclusive access to Madeleine’s family if he spied on press pack for the McCanns” by James Dunn, on May 3 2017:

“A BBC reporter claims he was offered exclusive access to the McCanns' team if he agreed to spy on the press pack for their investigators.

Richard Bilton, who covered the disappearance in 2007, said investigators hired by the family offered him the deal because they wanted information on a suspect.

They asked him to find out what other journalists were saying about Robert Murat, who was later cleared by police but since said the accusation alone 'destroyed my life'.

Presumably this was to make us feel the programme was impartial and therefore believable. So when we were told that Mr Smith had changed his mind, were we supposed to accept that the so-called investigative journalist Bilton , who brought up this new and rather startling fact,  had checked his facts before stating them so boldly in a documentary?

This “fundamental error”, as Gemma refers to it, suggests that Bilton is either a sloppy journalist who took the Times story at face value without attempting to speak to Mr Smith or he is nothing more than a hack, paid to say what he is told to say. And if the BBC had made “an honest mistake”, why did it take the intervention of a journalist to achieve what Mr Smith had failed to do?

Steve Anderson – Panorama or Propaganda?

So over to you Gemma.

We hope you do decide to pursue the Maddie case again, as we don’t want to leave it to the “armchair detectives” when we have bona fide journalists waiting to do the job for us.


  1. Thanks Textusa
    I have always wondered what on earth had led to the BBC broadcasting the 2017 Panorama programme on the Mc Canns, which was so innacurate, mis-leading and clearly biased toward showing the Mc Canns as innocent victims. I vowed never to watch another Panorama as it was such 'rubbish'. Now, I can see exactly what has led to it's stance. Very interesting..

  2. Any programme that gives credibility to the Pillow snatcher, and persecutes ex employees of Mark Warner is suspect. No doubt in my mind that the BBC are backing the McCann propaganda team.

    1. There is only one true story,Scotland Yard aren't telling any one any thing,the rest is noise for the sake of it.

  3. I wondered and still wonder why the 2008 Loach documentary has been eradicated from the Web, as it was the only one authorized to commemorate the "abduction"'s anniversary. It is perhaps the only documentary that picks up fugitively KMC's genuine (without control) feelings (Imo that's emotional Emma effect). Perhaps someone downloaded it ? There's no complete transcript unfortunately.
    But in spite of the rectification done by the lawyer Carlos de Abreu to The Guardian, the hoax is reiterated that a deal had been offered to KMC : confess you killed her and the sentence will be reduced.
    There's also the assertion that it was even better than dining in their back garden since in PdL they checked every half hour, something they would never do at home.
    But perhaps the most embarrassing in that documentary is the statement mentioning as a fact that the PJ leaked the so called crying episode. Many people could have revealed it, starting with Fiona, Rachael and Jane who were the first to hear of it at the Tapas table, then the 2 FLOs who were amazed by the insistence of the MCs and noted it on their report.
    Accusing globally (always of course by proxy) the PJ to have done this to hamper the promotion of an Amber Alert in Bruxelles was serious defamation.

  4. '' “We have been with Kate and Gerry McCann as they have pushed for a better system across Europe to help stop child abduction. They are determined to do whatever they can to make sure that what happened to Madeleine doesn’t happen to another child. ''

    I have to say nothing annoys me more about this case than the above, but of course considering how you interpret ''missing'' disappeared etc. But whatever you believe to promote the idea that it was what people do, ie leave the kids, in it's self was wrong.

    The independence of British MSM whether the daily news, newspapers or documentaries. But now to read that these documentaries were far from independent were almost directed by TM. One can see a need to gain access to the McCanns, interview etc. But befriend.......... well! and then appear as a witness in the defence in a court case. SHOCKED and amazed, but not surprised.

    I have to say, I did give up watching them because they so annoyed me.

  5. An article that gives some content detail of the doc which is no longer available:

    Madeleine McCann's parents: One year on

    MADELEINE’S McCann’s distraught parents will tonight be seen recalling their distress and desperation on the night their daughter went missing.

    16:57, 30 APR 2008UPDATED00:04, 9 MAY 2013

    MADELEINE’S McCann’s distraught parents will tonight be seen recalling their distress and desperation on the night their daughter went missing.

    Kate McCann tells an ITV1 documentary: “I rushed round the apartment, really quickly, just opened up cupboards and things and then just went flying out down to the tapas restaurant, shouting: ‘Someone’s taken Madeleine’.

    “And that’s when the nightmare started.”

    Kate adds: “I just remember saying: ‘Not Madeleine, not Madeleine, not Madeleine’ and I can just remember saying that over and over and over again. Gerry was the same ... I’m not used to seeing Gerry obviously that upset.”

    And of the reaction of other members of their group, Kate reveals: “I can remember our friends shouting ‘We need to close the borders’ and they were shouting ‘Morocco, Algiers’. I can remember all this going on – and roadblocks, ‘We need roadblocks’.”

    One of Kate’s most vivid memories is her concern that Madeleine would be cold: “I knew what pyjamas she had on and I just thought she’s going to be freezing.”

    Then they went out searching together at dawn: “It was just deserted and we were just searching, through the undergrowth, through bushes,” says Kate.

    All the while they muttered prayers in their heads, with Gerry recalling: “We were saying over and over again ‘Just let her be found, let her be found’.”

    Gerry also talks about the sickening hate mail received by the couple, and reads out a Christmas card which called them “f****** thieving bastards” and added: “Your brat is dead because of your drunken arrogance.”

    In Madeleine, One Year On: Campaign For Change, which has been made thanks largely to Liverpool-born brothers Steve and Jeff Anderson, Kate also speaks of how she has “persecuted” herself for not paying more attention to a remark made by Madeleine on the morning before her disappearance.

    She recalls: “She just very casually really said ‘Where were you last night when me and Sean cried?’ And we immediately looked and said, you know ‘When was this Madeleine, was this when you were going to sleep?’ and she didn’t answer.

    “And then she just carried on playing, totally undistressed.”

    Emphasising that the couple had taken Madeleine’s comment as simply a passing remark, Kate continues: “We obviously told the police because we thought ‘Does that indicate that someone’s been round the night before and that’s what’s woken her up?’ which is significant, you know.

    “You know, I’ve persecuted myself over and over again about that statement because you think why didn’t I kind of just hold her and say ‘What do you mean? What do you mean?’ you know. ‘What do you mean you woke up?’. . . but you don’t think that. I mean it’s easy saying that after what’s happened.”

    Kate and Gerry also reveal they might not have left their children behind while they went out with friends on the night of their daughter’s disappearance if they had taken a buggy on holiday.

    They say they almost decided against going to the tapas restaurant opposite their apartment in Praia da Luz, but opted not to take the children to another restaurant, the Millennium, because of the distance.


  6. (Cont.)

    Gerry says: “I think the worst thing is we kind of almost thought about not going and ... did. We weren’t sure we were going to get into the tapas.”

    And Kate adds: “In fact we were all ... going to go up to the Millennium again – that was with the kids – which is what we did the first night.

    “It was just, it was just because the walk was so long and we didn’t have a buggy and the kids were tired by that time and I thought we were, you know we did talk about going up to the Millennium that night.”

    In the two-hour documentary, which charts the McCanns’ campaign for an EU-wide missing child alert system, Kate repeatedly breaks down in tears, while Gerry describes their current existence as being like “purgatory”.

    And at one point, Kate contemplates “the thought of living like this for another 40 years”.

    She also hints openly, for the first time, at a deal reportedly offered to her by police if she admitted accidentally killing Madeleine and staging an abduction. She told the programme she was not going to be “railroaded”.

    The couple admit they were effectively forced to leave Portugal two days after being declared suspects last September because they felt it was no longer “safe” for them there.

    Kate also attacks the Portuguese police and openly accuses them, again for the first time, of deliberately leaking details of the investigation to smear them.

    The documentary’s executive producer is Steve Anderson, a creative executive for makers Mentorn Media, and it was commissioned by ITV’s controller of current affairs and documentaries – his brother, Jeff Anderson.

    Steve, 49, and Jeff, 45, were brought up in Kirkby, attended St Kevin’s RC Comprehensive, and started their successful media careers at the Kirkby Reporter.

    And Steve, who spent a year at the Liverpool ECHO in the late 1970s, en route to Granada, the BBC and the ITV network, says: “I cried on several occasions during the making of the documentary; you can’t help but be moved. “It’s such a terribly sad story, and if something like this can happen to people like Kate and Gerry, who were on an expensive and aspirational holiday in a part of the world we all assumed was incredibly safe, it can happen to anyone.”

    Madeleine, One Year On: Campaign For Change, tonight at 8pm on ITV1

    1. Worth printing as a whole piece and not only because it says that Steve Anderson says “I cried on several occasions during the making of the documentary; you can’t help but be moved”

      So, Steve Anderson cried: "I cried on several occasions during the making of the documentary; you can’t help but be moved."

      At least he didn't go by the "Gamble school of profiling" book which would make him say that he FIRST thought the parents were guilty (thus telling the world "look, I looked at all options") and then after meeting them, he couldn’t help but cry.

      "...this can happen to people like Kate and Gerry, who were on an expensive and aspirational holiday". Expensive? Really? Has he been in Praia da Luz?

      We have and failed to see any Ritz Carlton, a Four Seasons or a Dom Pedro (which was one Gerry used during one of his stays in Lisbon) hotels there...

      Kate in 2011 would also contradicts 2008 Kate.

      Well, contradict is a strong word, after all she ONLY “hints openly” in 2008 that “for the first time, at a deal reportedly offered to her by police if she admitted accidentally killing Madeleine and staging an abduction. She told the programme she was not going to be “railroaded”” while in her book she states the "infamous deal" was a legal route option proposed by her lawyer, which made her be very angry with the man for even having dared to make such a proposal.

      Proposal. Not deal.

    2. And aspirational holidays? What are aspirational holidays?

      Let’s look at the definition of the word “aspirational”:

      “aimed at or appealing to people who want to attain a higher socialposition or standard of living”

      So the holiday was about achieving status?

      Hmmmm… how interesting.

      Maybe this explains the “expensive” part too. Would by any chance, Steve Anderson know the names of some of the people who he knew had been there and assumed that Praia da Luz would be an expensive resort?

      Who knows?

    3. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    4. AnneGuedes, Blogger doesn't let us alter any comments once published. Not even ours. So, we are “submitting” your comment again, now corrected according to your instructions:

      “AnneGuedes10 Mar 2018, 14:39:00
      Note "I knew what pyjamas she had on" and not (the expected) "she had only pyjamas on". The pyjamas issue has been an obsession for KMC. Every time she had the opportunity she insisted on the short sleeves, a detail that didn't match the little girl that Smithman was carrying.

      Carlos Pinto de Abreu (who likely was fired for that ? We never heard of him any more), didn't obviously believe a word of what he was told by his clients. This is why he advised them to not reply to the PJ's questions. He likely told Kate that concealing a body wasn't a crime and would be "paid" by a fine, supposing of course that she'd reveal where it was, which imo she wasn't able to say.”

    5. Many thanks for this, Textusa, and furthermore for your interesting "Panorama or Propaganda" post.
      May I hope you didn't renounce commenting the very telling Strategic Debrief ?

    6. Anne Guedes,

      The posts about the debrief (there will have to be more than one) are very complex to write.

      The subject is like one of those garden mazes that we see in movies like the “Shining” and that initially appear to be very difficult to overcome.

      Only when understands how simple the algorithm that solves it is, can one realise how simple in reality is what we once thought to be very complex.

      In the case of the maze, one just has to maintain contact of one’s hand to the walls of the maze and that will always lead us to its exit.

      Easy to explain the once-complex-but-in-reality-simple of the maze but very complex to explain that simplicity of the debrief.

      So, it’s not a question of renouncing but having to find the time and the patience to deconstruct that complexity into easily understandable simplicity.

      Under the risk of sounding absolutely bonkers, let us use an analogy so you understand the apparent complexity we have to deconstruct:

      Imagine there’s an invoice for the replacement of a radiator under X’s name due to a collision with a tree stump.

      X says that while driving the other night on his blue car it started to rain heavily. The water on the windscreen was so much that he leaned over to the glove-compartment to get a cloth but when he did that, he touched the dial on the radio of the car and that made it change the station it was tuned on and that was playing a music he so much wanted to hear. So, in attempt to put the radio on the previous station he simultaneously turned the driving wheel and pressed the gas pedal and that made him go off the road and hit the tree stump.

      Reading the above, the natural conclusion to come is that X is either telling a tall tale or one very unconscious and dangerous driver.

      What the reader does not capture is that by assuming he’s an unconscious and dangerous driver, X has proven a point: that he was driving a blue car.

      We question his capability to drive but we don’t question that he was driving.

      As that was what he wanted us to believe, for him to be known as a reckless driver is indifferent and irrelevant.

      But then, other data show that there was indeed a car but that it wasn’t a blue car but a blue pick-up truck.

      Then one has to question why is X trying to hide that it was the blue pick-up truck that hit that tree stump? And going so far as to invent a red car?

      The debrief is like the abduction theory. It’s something ridiculous to cover-up something that really happened in terms of the UK response to the Maddie case from the first moment and how it continued.

      For some reason, someone asked X about the “radiator invoice” and the reply X gave was the one we described above.

      When we find the time and patience we will try to explain it better.

      Hope it made at least a little sense and answered partly your question.

    7. It makes big sense, Textusa, I understand your point as I've been thinking myself about that debrief, hence I was, I am, curious of your thoughts about it. Why was it published actually?
      It's a bit like the neglect topic. The MCs needed it for alibi, the blame was on the friendly appearance of the environment (lol). They had merciful people warranting they had been reasonably good parents, but unfortunately everybody understood that this was pure convenience. People thought that the MCs, who were lucky enough to be educated, behaved in a miserable way. They of course should have admitted the neglect and say they were sorry for it, but they didn't, because it wasn't true (they weren't neglectful parents), they found it unjust, they wanted the butter and the money for it. By assuming they had been neglectful leaving alone and leaving doors open, they would have proven that MMC could very well have gone out by her own, as KMC told at the Tapas table, and met her fate outside. They would have been guilty for whatever happened, it was unacceptable for them.

    8. Anne Guedes,

      You have hit bullseye on what caused us to see that we were before an “interesting” document: why was it published?

      But a bigger question than that one, was to ask why was a document relative to a very highly secretive and sensitive state matter being released without any security clearance?

      That alone told us that the document was published to be seen.

      What it contained was what was meant to convince and not about giving any relevant information about the UK’s participation in the Maddie case.

      To explain why It was published, let’s go back to the analogy.

      Factually, there was the invoice and it showed that there had been the need for the replacement of a radiator and that that it was because of damages caused by a tree stump.

      Missing? To what vehicle that radiator belonged to.

      A certain public had become profoundly interested in that invoice and they had heard frequently in the night a vehicle driving by and with the same frequency had seen its tire tracks in the morning but they never got to see it.

      They knew there was a vehicle but didn’t know which, so fill that missing gap the invoice showed, a vehicle needed to be materialised.

      Knowing that if they said it was the red pick-up truck everyone would understand the entire plot and in the need of showing the existence of a car, an OFFICIAL document was needed to convince the public that the radiator in the invoice belonged to a blue car.

      This was done through a confusing (intentionally) and boring (intentionally) document basically showing how the driver had been so incompetent, so reckless and so dangerous while driving a… blue car.

      Back to the debrief, the document is confusing because like it happened with the FSS final report, there is no sequencing or logic in its contents. It garbles up information to make it deliberately confusing. It speaks of A in chapters 1 and 3, of B in chapters 2, 1, of C in chapters 2, 3 and 4 and so on.

      One wanting to follow-up a certain subject has to go back and forth in the document and that distracts.

      Boring because it is a document filled up with a LOT of information that those to whom it was supposedly directed to – the elements of the agencies listed and not the public – should know by heart, so obvious it is, or should be, for any policing professional.

    9. If we accept then that FSS,Panorama and the Strategic Debrief are all being "economical with the actualite",then why should we believe that they will ever resolve this farce. You have always mention various likely outcomes Textusa...what about case not closed and kicking the can down the road a la Lord Lucan...whose case is still open?


    10. Bampots,

      If keep open all possibilities as this case as defied all logic, decency and integrity, so nothing will surprise us.

      Worst case scenario, we will be disappointed. But our registry will be here for history to see.

      But let's look at those you've mentioned. FSS, gone. Panorama had to correct a documentary because an Irish journo called. Whoever coordinated the Strategic Debrief is no longer able to write up another debrief as no longer working for any government entity.

      All in all, we would say reasons to be optimistic.

      But we have to say, that from what we are witnessing, it's an "all-in" (poker reference) by the other side on the death by "unknown protected powerful British paedo".

      They are engaging all their reserves on that attack. Let's see how truth resists.

    11. Textusa, I do agree that it was published to be seen and to confuse. But who was supposed to see it? And when ? It's dated 2009 but I first came upon it less than a year back. I tried but couldn't trace it.
      In France the father of a 9 yrs old who vanished in the darkness of a snowy night as she was walking the last 300 m of a frozen secondary street in a residential village before being home, 15 years ago (no body, no witness, no noise, no trace, no nothing) is suing the French State.. He said that there was no obligation of results but there was one of means. No missing child has been searched as this child was. The police blocked the village at 4 in the morning, nobody went out to work that day, all houses were inspected. The landfill was scrutinized, the ice of any waterway was broken etc. I mention this because suddenly passed my mind that the MCs or actually their lawyers could invent something like this and the police forces know it.

    12. Anne Guedes,

      It was supposedly an internal paper, so they couldn’t well release it to the press. Or hand it over you a blog or forum.

      It needed to be found by someone in due time. Someone would eventually find it, and if no one did, then “someone” would find it.

      Once found, innocently or not, it would be read in the Maddie world, get the shake of the head from everyone how all had been so amateurish and incompetent, and how the British had arrogantly imposed themselves on the Portuguese, bla, bla, bla… and the blue car had been materialised.

      No one had questioned it, no one had even considered there had been the red pick-up truck.

      For some reason the document is published (because it needed to be found) in a police library public website with the appealing word “strategic” on it.

      When one opened it, one would think one was reading a “lessons-learned” document but because it is so confusing and boring one doesn’t even realise that it doesn’t contain a single lesson learned to be corrected!

      The good thing about all this is that the tire tracks and the engine sound were not of a car but of a larger vehicle.

      So, like with the abduction hoax, to tweak a tale with existent facts, truth had to be used. And picking the truthful bits here and there, one can indeed see very clearly indeed the red pick-up truck.

      When it was made, where it was made, who ordered its production, who helped produce it, who drove it, etc. A very interesting document indeed.

  7. The Daily Mail has just published today several clips about the case on YouTube, are they getting ready for something, one of the clips as follows.


    "US experts are currently trying to find DNA from a toy car and a child’s sandal found near the scene"


  9. Censored Anonymous at 10 Mar 2018, 23:45:00

    “Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "Panorama or Propaganda?":

    Hi Tex something interesting has popped up on a forum saying (censored). The msm propaganda has worked well some refuse to see that the cover up could be for anything other than peadophilia. I wonder how many have forgotten that after winning the election Blair insisted on no sex scandals that had bogged down the Tories.Plus do people believe that it would have been thrown out into the open so people can dig and expose the guilty pedo,when in reality tptb normally go to so much trouble to burying all the pervs wrong doing from the publics eyes with one cover up after another. No they've hidden the truth behind a smokescreen of confusion and red herrings with pedo's'r'us used to focus peoples attention.

    Posted by Anonymous to Textusa at 10 Mar 2018, 23:45:00”

    The reason we are censoring is that it’s pure speculation. If on that particular forum there is some sort of backing-up what was said, we will gladly uncensor your comment.

    But thank you for the information. As it contains some detail, it may well be true but we prefer not publish until we are certain it is.

    Hope you understand.

    1. Censored Anonymous at 10 Mar 2018, 23:45:00

      We have checked the info the forum referred to. It still exists where the forum says it does.

      It would make sense as one wouldn’t go to a place like that nearer home if one was a doctor who meets a lot of people in one’s job.

  10. “Please don't publish” at 11 Mar 2018, 20:28:00

    Thank you. We will be observing.

    By the way, we have noted Walkercan1000’s return from the US in our comment at 11 Mar 2018, 21:26:00 in our previous post “The paedo offensive”.

  11. Identified reader “NOT TO BE PUBLISHED” at 11 Mar 2018, 21:36:00

    Could you please leave your mail again in a DO NOT PUBLISH so we can contact you?

    Your comment is much too complex to answer “vaguely”.

    Thank you.

    1. Received, thank you.

      Will email you tomorrow.


    Posted by PORTUGALPRESS on March 12, 2018
    Justice for Madeleine and Mary

    Demand for the truth about what happened to Madeleine McCann is likely to continue even if London’s Metropolitan Police Service has to give up its Operation Grange investigation when the funds run out.

    A remarkable example of public determination and fortitude in a missing child case took place in Ireland last Saturday.

    A silent vigil was held outside the Donegal County Coroner’s offices to demand justice for Mary Boyle, who disappeared without trace at the age of six while visiting her grandparents’ farm near Ballyshannon 41 years ago.

    Family and friends have called for an inquest to establish exactly what happened to Mary on March 18, 1977.

    They believe she was killed by a known suspect and then became the subject of a police cover-up instigated by a politician.

    Those taking part in the demonstration on Saturday included Mary’s twin sister, Ann Doherty. The protest group, wearing purple ribbons and holding purple balloons, handed in a petition containing more than 10,000 names.

    Joe Craig, Mary’s cousin and spokesperson for the Justice for Mary Boyle Campaign, said: “Time is running out and we simply cannot allow this to be dragged on any longer.”

    Mr Craig added: “All we are asking for is to allow the events of that day to be pieced together at an inquest so we can move on. Is that too much to ask?”

    Madeleine’s parents have always claimed their daughter was abducted and believe she may still be alive.

    The Met has so far spent more than £11 million of taxpayers’ money on Operation Grange but has apparently not managed to find a shred of solid evidence to solve the mystery.

    A response is still awaited from the British Home Office to last month’s request for more funding, which came at a time when the Met, along with police forces throughout the UK, are under severe budget pressure and laying off thousands of officers.

    Aside from such pressure, many analysts have described the Operation Grange investigation as a “sham”.

    Colin Sutton, a highly respected senior Met detective now in retirement, has been more concise in his criticism.

    Last May, around the 10th anniversary of Madeleine’s disappearance, he said the investigation had been so “restricted” from the start that it was destined to fail.

    After being tipped to lead Operation Grange, Colin Sutton was advised against it in a phone conversation with another senior Met officer. He was told that operation Grange would be restricted to the abduction theory.

    Colin Sutton has not elaborated since last May, but nor has he backtracked on his comments.

    He said recently: “I have no reason to change my view that Grange was never a comprehensive reinvestigation of all possible theories and that unless and until it changes that focus it will be doomed to fail.”

    As in the Mary Boyle case, a great many people would like clarification about the way the Madeleine case has been conducted.

    By Len Port

    Len Port is a journalist and author based in the Algarve. Follow Len’s reflections on current affairs in Portugal on his blog:

    Photo: Madeleine, missing since May 3, 2007 / Mary, missing since March 18, 1977

    1. Len Port, like Gemma O'Doherty establishes a parallel between Maddie and Mary Boyle.

      The BIG difference, is that Len Port has followed the Maddie case for years and Gemma O'Doherty has come into contact with it recently.

      Our caps:

      “Colin Sutton, A HIGHLY RESPECTED SENIOR MET DETECTIVE now in retirement, has been more concise in his criticism.

      Last May, around the 10th anniversary of Madeleine’s disappearance, he said the investigation had been so “restricted” from the start that it was destined to fail.

      After being tipped to lead Operation Grange, Colin Sutton was advised against it in a phone conversation with another senior Met officer. He was told that operation Grange would be restricted to the abduction theory.

      Colin Sutton has not elaborated since last May, but nor has he backtracked on his comments.”

      We beg to differ:

  13. Rowley replacement ...


  14. Comment we have received and censored:

    Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "Why?":

    (censored). I put my theory that swinging was been hidden by paedophilia to be instantly shot down by the admin who quoted the lolita pictures, the Gaspar statement and Payne bathing the kids. This is the same site that shot down the info about (censored) because it came from a (censored) and a link and backup could not be provided to prove its true.These people are been drip fed information by certain quarters yet they still don't understand and see it. The lengths that the elite and government go to bury things from the public is truly horrific that's why I pointed out if it was about paedophilia we'd never know about it, you only have to look at operation ore and Jersey to see if it does bubble to the surface then it's quickly sent back into oblivion. As for the Gaspar statement which has troubled and never sat right since I read it. I asked how many on that forum to put their hands up if they sit and say nothing while someone was talking filth and making obscene gestures about a child, to then let that same person bathe your child and to top it all off you arrange later on to meet up and socialise with them really!! How many takers do you think I got? Yes none, Nada because it just wouldn't happen as for the photo's well these two have shown on multiple occasions they are anything but normal. One thing that always gets glossed over and never mentioned is Mark Warner's is previous problems it had at another resort with nannies/childcare safety, it's no wonder the hoax had to be created, a death wouldn't have done well for their bookings
    Posted by Anonymous to Textusa at 13 Mar 2018, 14:30:00”

    Thank you for your comment:

    We have censored your comment because we don’t believe the bruises on Kate’s wrists came from any sexual activity but because she lashed out at David Payne on realising what had just happened.

    The other censoring has to with the fact that until we are shown proof, it is for all purposes, speculation.

    We don’t believe the hoax has anything to do with Mark Warner. Such an operator would not warrant the involvement of the British Embassy, the Home Office and the FCO.

    1. Thanks for your reply Tex, as every individual differs with bruising and when it comes out then the verdict is out for me on that one. I fully understand the censorship I was just wishing to point out how quickly anything other that what has been force fed is discarded which really annoys me. People talk about exposing and finding the truth while sending everyone in the same direction yet quickly herd and conform I think without even realising it. I admit I struggle with as I'm open to all ideas and prefer to rule things out once I've studied them and know it's not possible or correct. As for Mark Warner well they had no choice but to play along with the hoax, they are just another piece of the puzzle.


    1. Anonymous 13 Mar 2018, 15:25:00,

      We have transcribed fully this article in our most recent post "Why" at 13 Mar 2018, 15:39:00

    2. Super, thank you !

  16. Richard Bilton raised and dismissed swinging allegations in the first Panorama programme. The post Panorama or Propaganda shows how reliable that programme is for an independent presentation.


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