Murder of Daphne Caruana Galizia

 

Sir, – The definition of news as something that “somebody somewhere wants to suppress” is one that leaps to mind when you consider the sinister and shocking murder of a brave investigative journalist in Malta (“Journalist who exposed Malta’s Panama Papers link killed in car bomb”, News, October 16th).

Daphne Caruana Galizia was a popular and fearless woman who exposed political corruption in her homeland both in the print media and via her “Running Commentary” blog. One thinks immediately of Veronica Guerin’s untimely death at the hands of Irish criminals.

The two women died while earnestly reporting the truth about corrupt and criminal factions within their societies. The impact of Galizia’s probing journalism can be gauged by the vehemence of the reaction to her work from government and opposition politicians alike in Malta, and by the long lines of detractors availing of her country’s libel laws in a sustained attempt to intimidate her into silence.

Sadly, libel laws don’t just protect the innocent.

To her eternal credit she refused to capitulate to either legalistic gagging tactics or the more frightening threats from people who, in the end, believed the only way to escape the harsh light of truth was to kill her.

I think we often take such courageous people for granted. They hold the powerful, the murderous, and the corrupt to account on our behalf, in the interests of decency, justice, and true democracy, as do those journalists assigned to warzones who risk their lives to provide us with information, as distinct from rumour or carefully packaged spin from the warring factions.

News reports nowadays are accessible to us at the swipe of an iPad, or by looking up Facebook, most of it costing us nothing.

It’s good to remember, and honour, the special breed of men and women who bring us that news, especially people like the wonderful, exemplary Daphne Caruana Galizia. – Yours, etc,

JOHN FITZGERALD,

Callan,

Co Kilkenny.