Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Brian Mulroney Releases Statement: Alleges Vendetta By CBC's The Fifth Estate

In a statement just released, former Canadian Prime Minister Brian Mulroney has lambasted CBC and its the fifth estate television program for an alleged 15 year "vendetta" and "continuing campaign to discredit him."

The Mulroney statement was issued in response to the airing Thursday of "The Unwritten Chapter," a the fifth estate episode that explored Mulroney's relationship with Karlheinz Schreiber, a German national who is currently facing extradition to Germany. The segment is described on the CBC's the fifth estate website as follows:

The launch of Brian Mulroney’s volume of memoirs, from his boyhood in Baie Comeau, through his years in power as Prime Minister, was the publishing event of this year.

But, in more than 1,000 comprehensive pages of anecdote and information there is one notable name missing--Karlheinz Schreiber—the German dealmaker at the center of the darkest chapter of Mr. Mulroney’s life.

In Brian Mulroney: The Unauthorized Chapter, Linden MacIntyre and a fifth estate team report new revelations about the relationship between the two men as well as details about the attempt to cover the trail of the $300,000 the former Prime Minister received from Schreiber.

Karlheinz Schreiber goes on the record to talk about a story from inside the world of Canadian politics.

Mulroney's statement is reproduced in full, below:

Statement by former Prime Minister Brian Mulroney/

NOT FOR DISTRIBUTION TO UNITED STATES NEWSWIRE SERVICES OR FOR DISSEMINATION IN THE UNITED STATES/

MONTREAL, Oct. 31 /CNW Telbec/ - For almost 15 years, the CBC's Fifth Estate program has carried on a vendetta against former Prime Minister Brian Mulroney, designed to suggest illegal behavior by him in relation to the Airbus matter. Despite its failure to establish such behavior and despite the RCMP having stated - after a lengthy investigation at home and abroad - that it had no evidence to substantiate such suggestions, the Fifth Estate persists in continuing its efforts to tarnish Mr. Mulroney's name. Tonight, it resumed the attack, airing a program based essentially on the unreliable and uncorroborated statements of Karlheinz Schreiber, held at present in a Toronto jail after unsuccessful attempts to have the Supreme Court of Canada reverse an order for his extradition to Germany to face serious criminal charges.

Mr. Mulroney and Mr. Schreiber are engaged at the present time in litigation before the Supreme Court of Ontario dealing with issues directly involving their relationship. Mr. Mulroney will not comment publicly on Mr. Schreiber's statements while this litigation is pending, as it would be inappropriate for him to do so.

Mr. Mulroney emphatically rejects as unfounded this renewed attack made rresponsibly and maliciously by the Fifth Estate in its continuing campaign to discredit him.

I did not see the episode, but the CBC website indicates it will be available online shortly. (UPDATE - November 2, 2007 - The episode is now available here)

In the meanwhile, I love the "not for dissemination to the US" notice on The Statement (OMG, what if Katie Couric finds out about this....).

I guess the former P.M. hasn't heard about the internets, yet.

UPDATE - November 1, 2007 - Liberals demand inquiry into Mulroney revelations, but Harper government says "case closed."

- Garry J. Wise, Toronto

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