Jude Collins

Thursday, 6 June 2013

The Mau Mau and official lies

So. Having watched the TV evening news, do you know what would be nice? If we didn’t hear any more garbage about the many good things that the British Empire brought to the dark corners of the world. I remember the Pathé newsreels as a child, and how everyone believed what they were told about the dreaded Mau Mau and the  savage practices they engaged in. 

Nothing compared to the British, it seems, to judge from this evening’s news. Thousands of Kenyans back then were killed, tortured, mutilated, castrated. And when the surviving victims went in search of  truth, the British authorities did all they could to bury it as deep as they did some of their victims. Finally, after years of cover-up, they’ve ‘fessed up, apologised and are now preparing to give surviving victims £2000 each. I’m not sure why I feel a little ill when I hear that. But I do know what I felt when I saw those old men and women dancing to express their joy after their long struggle. 

And before some Brain-of-Britain weighs in to ask me when the IRA is going to ‘fess up, we’re talking here about the British authorities. The people who ran the place at the time. The people who were depicted in the media as the goodies. The people whose job it was to govern with humanity and justice. 

And what did I feel as I watched those old men and women dance in joy? The unbreakable generosity and forgiveness of some human beings, no matter what horrors are visited on them. Bobby Sands said our victory will be in the laughter of our children. These people’s victory lies in their own laughter. 


  1. Nothing as dangerous as politically motivated bile sugar coated by intellect. Pathe News in a blog.

  2. The Butchers Apron in all its Glory.

  3. Small point worth inclusion.

    The Kikuyu themselves don’t use the term ‘Mau Mau’. The Information Research Department (IRD) probably invented it. The IRD were Britain’s secret PSYOP department. They tried to link the Kikuyu with Communism. Of course they also thought Harold Wilson was a Moscow spy so they weren't exactly objective in their judgments.

    As it turned out later they had a spy called Guy Burgess on their staff. One of the Cambridge spies with Donald Maclean, Anthony Blunt, Kim Philby and John Cairncross.

    Blunt ties into Northern Ireland through Peter Montgomery.

  4. Long time reader of your blogs Jude. I'm a bit surprised and disappointed you haven't given us your thoughts on Ruairi O' Bradaigh's passing, may be rest in peace.

  5. Michael Goodman7 June 2013 at 10:19

    Much as I dislike responding to people who haven't enough confidence in their statements to put their name on it , I'll make an exception for Anon 19.28.
    The facts Jude states about the British Empire's actions in Kenyan could be multiplied a thousand fold in places across their empire where the "sun never set", these facts are attested to by the ordinary people who lived through the benefits of the civilizing mission of the empire from Ireland to Tasmania and in all those places have the graveyards to prove it. It is highly enlightening that there is not one word of compassion for those tortured and murdered by the British State in Kenya from our anonymous friend,just an vitriolic attempt to blame the messenger. Fortunately we can all now see the reality of the empire laid bare. Hopefully it will provide food for thought to those in whose name this was continually done and who now have to pay the price.

  6. I was listening to a Bore in a bar in Omagh a few weeks ago bumming & blowing about having "served" in Kenya in the 50's & 60's. Having just finished a few books on British Torture & Murder in "its" empire I had to bite my tongue. The Bore never mentioned anything re British Torture & Murder. Had he forgotten? Had he seen nothing? Or had he been so filled with Empire propaganda that he hadn't an independent thought in his head?
    The small number of people that overheard the Bore all smiled knowingly. The Bore had forgotten thet we were not in Blighty & that the Kikuyu people are our brothers & sisters like all the other peoples of the world who (have)suffer(ed)under imperialism. Although the Kikuyu suffered more than most probably because of skin colour & the distance from Britain (the public were depending on the likes of Pathe news & the BBC for information).

    I suspect you may get some correspondence from the PUL community who have been drilled since birth re the Queen & Empire etc and, like our Bore can't contemplate anything that contradicts their entire living consciousness/thought. As time goes on I almost feel sorry for these poor Bores/vegetables who have never had free thought.

    Suggested reading-The Blood never dried, by John Newsinger; Britain's Gulag, by Caroline Elkins; Cruel Brittania: A secret history of torture, by Ian Cobain.

    Keep up the good wrok Jude. D