Sunday 24 April 2016


In the BBC piece "BBC broadcaster and author" Anita questioned the legality and the "clear immorality" of the UK's possession of the British crown jewel and outlined a black-and-white version of how we came into possession of it that makes us look very bad indeed. 

(She's presently working with William Dalrymple, whose history The Last Mughal I can see presently see on a bookshelf in front of me. That was also a bad-and-white exercise in making us look very bad indeed). 

Alan spotted - and NewsSniffer confirms the fact - that after article was originally published it was then amended (to correct a date) and that someone added the word 'Viewpoint' to the title of the piece about twenty hours later

Someone at the BBC must have got cold feet about putting such an article on the BBC as if it were a piece of 'impartial BBC writing', or someone may have complained. (Who knows?)

What's missing from her BBC article is that the diamond taken from "this small child...alone and terrified...and surrounded by grown British men" had been obtained by the small child's father by means that were at least as legally dubious and clearly immoral...and that the diamond has been obtained that way for centuries.

That was a point made by many commenters at another Anita Anand article on the same subject - this one (you probably won't be surprised to hear) written for the Guardian  - a piece in which, among other things, she describes an article on the theme by historian Andrew Roberts as "drivel".

At least there she provides a bit more context and lays out her own position even more clearly:
If you ask me, we should leave the wretched rock where it is. It is no longer the same stone that was cut from India’s dirt and the claims are too manifold and messy. But don’t pretend the British hold it legally, and don’t be surprised if tourists from India and Pakistan continue to hiss while touring the Tower of London. They are perfectly entitled to do so.
Still, it would be rather rude of them to do so though, wouldn't it?


  1. Still, it must have stung a little bit to have the BBC slap a 'Viewpoint' label on what she feels is factual and of the highest moral standing.

  2. Why does she not mention that before it ended up in India it had been stolen from the Afghans? Or that prior to that it had been in the possession of the Persians? It's not clear why "one but last" has priority over preceding owners?


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