Interview - Howard Hampton

I/V: Howard Hampton, Publisher of x-mag, Journalist & Author (specialties - politics, religion, internet and media) : 19th June 2003

What's your background?

I was born in Pakistan of English parents, grew up and was educated in Tasmania. Am 52 years old. Undergraduate and Postgraduate qualifications. An interest in politics, the media and as a particular subset, the Internet.

What are your prime aims and objectives?

To be subversive to the interests of the mainstream media outlets and their political mates.

How has the internet helped and hindered you?

ISP's are timid instruments when hosting sites to those who espouse opinions which are contrary to those held by governments and political parties, and those who are offended by, say, my opinions. Their determination fold at the first whiff of legal trouble.

So the internet offers virtual instant transmission of information and news, but you still have to mind your "P's" and "Q's", otherwise you can still have your voice strangled at the source. The humble e-mail and attachment is not so subject to these constraints.

Have you been strangled?

Not me. My American ISP was. But I suppose in a way I was, too. When I was publishing Squark, somebody took offense to something I said about John Howard. The ISP received a threatening letter from a New York law firm, breathing hot coals and promising purgatory if I wasn't strangled.

What happened then?

In a flash all of my pages were removed, and I was left arguing with the ISP from a distance.

What did you say about the Prime Minister?

Nothing controversial, really. I said that he led the most racist government in living memory. Most Australians would agree; and rightly so, some would say. Meaning, Australia should have a racist government leading a racist country.

What motivates you?

To make a difference in this world.

Are you controversial, and why, or why not?

Hardly, despite the large red "X" suggesting revolution, I still am constrained by the facts of the stories themselves.

How did x-mag evolve?

Began as another publication, but changed when I came across ZED magazine last year. I wanted it to be a weekly publication, but it didn't work out. The amount of work necessary is phenomenal.

How did you break into the media business?

My academic training propelled me into publishing: both orthodox and the new electronic media.

What media platform do you prefer?

Probably the Internet, because it doesn't cost you much to distribute your ideas and criticisms worldwide.

Why do you have such strong views on ethical and religious issues?

Upbringing and uni.

Were there any particular events in your life, that you drew upon, to start writing with such passion and belief?

The dismissal of the Whitlam government in 1975. Until then, I was fairly conservative. But after the event I bolted for greener pastures.

What army's have you served, and in what fashion?

Never served in the military.

Are you a freedom fighter?

In a way. I do believe in truth, justice and the Australian way.

Are you a potential martyr?


How do Jews and Palestinians co-exhist?

They don't. And it is unlikely that the present road map to peace is going to go anywhere, because the Americans are not likely to rein in the Israelis, or remove their settlements from Palestinian land. And this is going to be required if peace is going to take place.

Further, the road map has been set up to excise large chunks of Palestinian land from the final settlement. Any Palestinian leader agreeing to such an excision is likely to be assassinated.

Does every religion share the one God, and if not, how many Gods do you believe exist?

Probably not. But in the case of myself, one.

What are a few examples of the worst ever acts committed against humanity?

In recent times I would include both the world wars, which resulted in the slaughter of millions-and I would include, as a subset of this conflict, the Nazi conspiracy to the slaughter the Jews of Europe and those living in the invaded territories to the East. And before that, the Soviet Union under Stalin. The Cambodian slaughter under Pol Pot and the those committed by the Baathist regime in Iraq. I also believe that the United States must bare a considerable share of the responsibility here, as they actively assisted in the installation of Saddam Hussein and his regime, and have therefore disqualified themselves in having any say in the post-war running of Iraq.

But there are so many atrocities to choose from here.

What is the ultimate solution for world peace?

There is none.

How have you made a difference?

By providing an alternative view of the world

What news media websites do you trust?

Trust is such a big word. Probably none, ultimately. I generally do my own thinking, and cross-reference sources of information to validate what the mainstream media is saying. I do like and often use material that they carry. They informed me of the more useful provisions of the United States copyright law.

What websites have you contributed to, and why?

Indymedia, Squark. None at the moment.

What else would you like to share with our audience?

I believe that the mainstream media have failed in their duty to expose the lies that we have been fed in the lead-up to the invasion of Iraq. Every time the "intelligence" organs of the invading states released information which could be tested for veracity, it failed. So when John Howard says that he relied on the information provided by the spy organisations of the Australian government as the basis for his decision to lead Australia to war, the mere fact that these "intelligence" claims were falsified should have caused a "reasonable man" like the Prime Minister to suspect the "intelligence" he was being fed. False "intelligence" is no excuse from a charge of a war crime. And without the existence of the Weapons of Mass Destruction, the invasion of Iraq becomes a "war of aggression". I now notice that the invasion is now being excused on the basis that the Iraqi regime was such a blood-thirsty regime-as if this is an excuse for a war of aggression. People have been hanged on the basis of being found guilty of being responsible for this kind of war crime.

I suspect that the leaders of the Coalition of the Willing will spend the rest of their lives evading their responsibilities arising out of the invasion of Iraq, because the creation of the International Criminal Court has changed things.


Editors comment: This is probably the most interesting, amazing, unconventional e-mail interviews I have ever conducted. This was a scoop. You read it hear first on Media Man Australia! I believe it is safe to say that we, nor the world, has heard the last of Howard Hampton.


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