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Was the Sun the only national to LIE? PDF Print E-mail
Written by Hampsy   
Wednesday, 17 January 2007
Hampsy's investigations conclude an emphatic YES. Was the Sun the only national rag to lie about Hillsborough?

This question keeps popping up, and The Sun used this uncertainty in what they called an apology last year saying ‘we weren’t the only ones’, thinking that the passage of time would dim memories enough to enable them to get away with yet another lie.

As I never bought the Sun anyway, nor the Star, I wondered why I was so sure that the Sun had dwarfed the other rags in going beyond the boundaries of human decency. I still don’t know how I knew, word of mouth I suppose. But still, I had to be sure, so I went to the British Library’s newspaper archives in North London to read the red tops of that time.

These archives come in film rolls which you insert into a viewing machine and then scroll through every single page, even the full page adverts, so there’s nothing left to chance. As the pages from that odious paper rolled by on the screen, my feelings were confirmed, in fact reinforced. I concentrated on headlines on each page - that was nauseating enough - without reading the articles’ full text.

I took a few notes, below (upper-case capitals as originally printed). Two things are immediately apparent- the Sun was the only one which stated the lies as fact, unlike the others who made it clear that they were allegations made by the police; the Sun is alone in making no attempt to make good the damage caused, just dropping the subject as quickly as MacKenzie had decided to lie about it, let alone apologise.

Wednesday 19th April 1989.

The Sun: ‘THE TRUTH’… front page headline/cont. page 2.

Daily Star: ‘WHAT COPS SAY ABOUT HILLSBOROUGH [front page headline]…police claimed yesterday’.

Daily Mirror: ‘Fury as police claim victims were robbed’… front page 50mm side column.

Thursday 20th.

The Sun: ‘I WAS ROBBED BY KOP YOBS’…front page headline/cont. page 5 (double page spread re. a pub that was allegedly robbed). + ‘The Truth Hurts’…front page.

Daily Star: ‘LIES!’ – front page headline. ‘Police claims that drunken Liverpool fans looted the bodies of the Hillsborough victims were condemned last night by their own boss…chief constable Peter Wright. Inside pages slamming the lies.

Daily Mirror: ‘SOCCER STARS LASH THUG FANS CLAIM’ [page 2/3 headlines]… ’They [South Yorkshire Police] want to get off the hook’.

By Friday’s editions the Sun finally stopped dragging the name of Scousers through the mud, while the Star produced a ‘Merseyside Special’. From the Saturday, Hillsborough was dropped from all front pages.

All the papers were rightly accused of printing voyeuristic photos from Hillsborough, and I won’t forget the Mirror’s full page picture in colour. However, there was one thing that struck me when scrolling through the archives of the rags- there was one ‘newspaper’ that by far outdid the others in printing pictures of the tragedy as it unfolded, one rag that milked it for all it was worth, page after page after sickening page…yep…the Sun.   


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