daily telegraph attacks archbishops' 'epistle' to tony blair - news from ekklesia

By staff writers
July 1, 2004

Daily Telegraph attacks Archbishops' 'epistle' to Tony Blair

-1/7/04

An editorial in the Daily Telegraph has attacked the Archbishops of Canterbury and York following their letter to Tony Blair
which rebuked the Prime Minister over the behaviour of Western Security forces in Iraq.

It comes just days after another editorial in which the same newspaper called for an increase in Bishop's salaries.

Despite its criticism, the editorial entitled; "Bishops Lack Grace" suggests that the letter from the Archbishops "amounts to a damning indictment" of the Prime Minister's "moral authority". The newspaper also defends the right and "duty" of the Primates of England to speak out to any Prime Minister and especially "to one who has explicitly placed Christian morality at the heart of his political creed."

The newspaper however warns that; "Having ventured into the public arena, the archbishops, too, must expect to be treated no less robustly than politicians or polemicists."

"Judged by these standards, their letter is a damp squib" the editorial continues.

Failing to mention that the letter was timed to coincide with handover of power in Iraq the Telegraph suggests that; "The fact that the archbishops are expressing their 'sense of moral shock' only now, two months after the abuse came to light, implies a certain lack of urgency, to say the least."

"They do not acknowledge the fact that both the Americans and British wasted no time in arresting the culprits and obliging those who bear ultimate responsibility, up to and including Donald Rumsfeld, to answer for their actions. Nor do the archbishops distinguish between the American and the British records in Iraq. Despite the Daily Mirror's abortive attempt to smear the Army with fake pictures, as yet there is no proof of systematic abuse by British troops, such as occurred at Abu Ghraib."

The editorial does not mention the abuses by British troops which might not be considered 'systemic'.

In what will be seen as a swipe at another newspaper, the editorial also appears to implicitly criticise the Times. The Times newspaper received an exclusive on the leaked letter, and is also the Daily Telegraph's main rival. The Telegraph points out that the "private" letter was leaked within days of its dispatch last Friday.

The editorial concludes by criticising the Archbishops' warning in the letter about the dangers of Christian Zionism saying the Archbishops have taken "a sideswipe at evangelical Christians in the United States."

Evangelical Christians are not specifically mentioned in the letter from the Archbishops.

Daily Telegraph attacks Archbishops' 'epistle' to Tony Blair

-1/7/04

An editorial in the Daily Telegraph has attacked the Archbishops of Canterbury and York following their letter to Tony Blair
which rebuked the Prime Minister over the behaviour of Western Security forces in Iraq.

It comes just days after another editorial in which the same newspaper called for an increase in Bishop's salaries.

Despite its criticism, the editorial entitled; "Bishops Lack Grace" suggests that the letter from the Archbishops "amounts to a damning indictment" of the Prime Minister's "moral authority". The newspaper also defends the right and "duty" of the Primates of England to speak out to any Prime Minister and especially "to one who has explicitly placed Christian morality at the heart of his political creed."

The newspaper however warns that; "Having ventured into the public arena, the archbishops, too, must expect to be treated no less robustly than politicians or polemicists."

"Judged by these standards, their letter is a damp squib" the editorial continues.

Failing to mention that the letter was timed to coincide with handover of power in Iraq the Telegraph suggests that; "The fact that the archbishops are expressing their 'sense of moral shock' only now, two months after the abuse came to light, implies a certain lack of urgency, to say the least."

"They do not acknowledge the fact that both the Americans and British wasted no time in arresting the culprits and obliging those who bear ultimate responsibility, up to and including Donald Rumsfeld, to answer for their actions. Nor do the archbishops distinguish between the American and the British records in Iraq. Despite the Daily Mirror's abortive attempt to smear the Army with fake pictures, as yet there is no proof of systematic abuse by British troops, such as occurred at Abu Ghraib."

The editorial does not mention the abuses by British troops which might not be considered 'systemic'.

In what will be seen as a swipe at another newspaper, the editorial also appears to implicitly criticise the Times. The Times newspaper received an exclusive on the leaked letter, and is also the Daily Telegraph's main rival. The Telegraph points out that the "private" letter was leaked within days of its dispatch last Friday.

The editorial concludes by criticising the Archbishops' warning in the letter about the dangers of Christian Zionism saying the Archbishops have taken "a sideswipe at evangelical Christians in the United States."

Evangelical Christians are not specifically mentioned in the letter from the Archbishops.

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