26 September 2014

Article Review - Express & Star Newspaper - Punt P.I. Investigates Midlands Riddle

Last month, I reviewed a radio show in which Punt P.I. (a gumshoe of the British airwaves) investigated the story of Bella in the Wych Elm. The radio show was quite good, but a newspaper article that preceded it had a few errors, some more glaring than others.

Article Review - Express & Star Newspaper - Punt P.I. Investigates Midlands RiddleThe article, entitled Punt P.I. Investigates Midlands Riddle, was published in the Express and Star, a regional British newspaper based in Wolverhampton, West Midlands. The article has several errors but the most glaring is a reference to "Czech-born Gestapo agent Josef Jakobs".

Josef Jakobs was not born in Czechoslovakia - he was born in Luxembourg to German parents, and was a German citizen. Karel Richter, a German spy who landed by parachute in England in May 1941, was born in the Sudetenland area of Czechoslovakia.

Josef Jakobs was not an agent of the Gestapo, but of the Abwehr. The two organizations were very, very different. The Gestapo were the German Secret State Police, or the Geheime Staatspolizei. It was a Nazi organization. The Abwehr was the German Intelligence Service. It was a military organization. The Abwehr, under Admiral Canaris did not get along with the Gestapo or its umbrella organization, the Sicherheitsdienst (SD). In fact, there is evidence to suggest that Canaris used his organization to protect people from the Gestapo. There is absolutely no evidence that Josef Jakobs was a member of the Gestapo and such a comment in the article is indicative of poor research and/or poor understanding of Germany military history.

Finally, the article used a photograph of Josef Jakobs without citing the source of the photograph.

Review Score
2 out of 5 - poorly researched


References
Express & Star (online newspaper) - Punt P.I. Investigates Midlands Riddle - accessed September 26, 2014.

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