Brown accuses tabloid of undermining war effort
Former British Prime Minister Gordon Brown on Monday, accused a Rupert Murdoch-owned tabloid of personally attacking him, failing the British people and undermining the war in Afghanistan through its coverage of the conflict.
In an often bitter attack on the Murdoch press in testimony to Britain's media ethics inquiry, Brown directly contradicted Murdoch's claim that the then-prime minister had made an abusive phone call to the media mogul in 2009. Murdoch told the inquiry last month that Brown had vowed to "make war on your company" after The Sun switched its support to the Conservatives.
"It didn't happen," said Brown, adding that he had been shocked to hear Murdoch make the allegation under oath.
Murdoch's News International fired back, saying in a statement that Murdoch stood by his testimony.
Brown is the first in a string of current and former political leaders to appear this week at the inquiry, set up amid a tabloid phone hacking scandal, to examine malpractice in the media and ties between politicians, the police and the press.
Brown told the inquiry that The Sun newspaper was guilty of "the conflation of fact and opinion" in its coverage of the Afghanistan conflict and of his performance as premier.