Video Reportage: My Day as a DPR Tourist in London

A couple of things to note about this recent reportage – I added a few of my favourite songs to accompany it, however due to YouTube policies, this means, for their own reasons, that the reportage isn’t playable on some devices, so, to be sure of watching it, best on a computer!

Also, just in case you fancied a break from my music, perhaps even adding your own, I left a few seconds quiet in the middle. Here’s the reportage! 

A Graham Newsletter (#25) East of Ukraine Nostalgia, Crimea, Latvia, DPR Tourism

It’s been both a week of intense activity in Donbass – from the first coal, and not only, trading with Russia, new DPR-designed roadheaders (I’ve been covering that all on my Twitter), and, sadly, continued Ukrainian shelling (see Patrick Lancaster, on the scene, for full coverage of that).

Also, I can say it’s been a week of some nostalgia for myself, as this week, 3 years ago, I’d set off from Odessa to see the situation in the east of Ukraine, as it was then, for myself. Driving, sleeping in the car for a few hours many nights to save time, covering as much ground as possible and, for my own embryonic YouTube channel as it was, filming reportage of things, just as they were! This week I did a few pull-togethers of reportage, here on the Truth Speaker, of things as they were –

Click here for full reportage, Donetsk, March 12th, 2014, here’s a couple: 

From Kharkov, March 14th: 

And, of course, Crimea, March 16th:

Of course, looking back to Latvia, from 2016, it’s a difference form of ‘nostalgia’ – I’d gone to spend a month reporting from Latvia, yet on the 3rd day, the authorities objected to my coverage of the march there honouring Nazism, deported me, banned for 3 years.

Here is my reportage from that day, March 16th, 2016 – 

They then pursued me with various letters describing my ‘misdemenours’ (in Latvian, so I really had no idea what they were saying), culminating in an 8-page document, which, after listing all my supposed wrong-doings (I asked people at a march honouring Nazism why they were doing that), then said they wanted 150 Euros from me!

Things all got a bit surreal on March 16th itself, when Ukrainian media, and not only, wrote the story of my being detained, and deported, at the Waffen SS veteran march, as if it had been March 16th, 2017 rather than 2016!  Groundhog Day…

This led to my receiving a lot of worried messages, and my own wondering if this was Latvia’s latest attempt for 150 Euros from me!

As it was, I was far away from Latvia. And indeed, being a tourist – in London, no less, and here I present you with my latest reportage from there, as a ‘DPR tourist’, no less, featuring a couple of special guests!

 There’s a bit more to come from the UK, not only London, and then, I’ll be on the road back to Donbass, via some interesting places en route!

Once more, a massive thanks to all of you who support my work, and make all kinds of reportage possible, in all kinds of places! The main thing is, it’s always independent, objective, and completely crowdfunded! To be a part, click here –

https://www.paypal.me/grahamwphillips

Of course, your support also goes towards here, the Truth Speaker, and the many articles, providing information, debunking fakes, as here –

‘Russian Tanks in Ukraine’: Tony Blair’s ‘Weapons of Mass Destruction’ for our times

https://thetruthspeaker.co/2017/03/14/russian-tanks-in-ukraine-tony-blairs-weapons-of-mass-destruction-for-our-times/

And don’t worry, none of your support goes towards propping up the Latvian economy 😉

Look out for lots more to come soon! Best for now!

A Graham Newsletter (#24) Women’s Day, Surprise Locations, To-Do List, Reviews, and More…

Before starting on the newsletter, things are heating up in Donbass, be sure you’re following Patrick Lancaster here for developments. 

Naturally, I hope all the ladies reading this had a fabulous Women’s Day! I was delighted to film 2 reportages on the theme. Here, Women’s Day and what it means in the UK –

And here, the Women’s Day demonstration by organisation WASPI, representing women born in the 1950s, affected by change in pension legislation meaning many of them must work on for years –

And, on a video note, it feels like time to record a new introduction for my YouTube channel, this was now 3 years ago now, can you believe…

Of course, there’s lots of exciting new reportage coming up soon, and to have a recap of what’s been recently.

The Truth Speaker broke the curious case of the 2 Ukrainian men in the UK trying to avoid the draft in Ukraine. 

Also, there’s a new review section here on the Truth Speaker, and the first review here, on film ‘Dreams of a Life’, if you’d like to write a review on something for me, and be published here, send an email to me at: gwplondon@gmail.com

I’m leaving London soon to return to report in Donbass, via Serbia, Russia, and actually some surprise destinations on, and perhaps even not, on the way. And before leaving London, there’s a checklist of things to do, which will be starting soon. Read all about that here. 

Meanwhile, my last crowdfunder finished a bit under, however I’ll find a way to continue to bring you all the reportage I can, and you can always support my work here.  And of course a massive thanks to all of those of you who do support my work!

Review (and film): Dreams of a Life (2011)

Graham Phillips

There are few things I love more than a good documentary film. Recently, Dreams of a Life was recommended to me, I researched it online, and the fascinating story on which it is based. That story being the life, or rather death, of Joyce Vincent, the 38-year-old lady who lay dead in her own Wood Green (North London) flat for over 2 years before being discovered.

For such a thing to happen, in our times – this was 2006, when the grim discovery was made, is extraordinary. And the work that film-maker Carol Morley has put into it is equally extraordinary. Morley worked on this for five years, turning something which may have been left as a ‘bizarre’ style article in the press, into a major story, with serious ramifications.

All of which makes the final result all the more disappointing. That all the interviewees are in the same place, with the same backdrop makes it feel a bit static. Morley leaving in a part where one calls her a ‘clever girl‘ feels rather onanistic. The music is frequently overbearing. Yet there are more intrinsic problems – the interviewees are not given captions to explain who they are, or the nature of their relationship with Vincent. Meanwhile what they say about Joyce frequently contradicts each other leaving it ultimately entirely unclear, beyond the basics, as to who Joyce Vincent really was.

However, as the film progresses, you are ready to forgive a lot of this – it has a good structure, the reconstructions are impressive, Zawe Ashton excels with what she’s given, in the title role, even if some of the dramatisation really is a bit much at times.  The idea to use a storyboard, adding post-its, and photos, works very well. The photos of Vincent are similarly effectively spliced into the 90-minute film.

Yet what makes it all ultimately unforgivable is that it ends on such a whimper. Ok, ex-boyfriend Martin Lister (pictured), a sympathetic presence throughout, breaks down in tears, which is emotional. And yet, the message of it all ends up being kind of a vague ‘we should pay more attention to our acquaintances‘.

Also, while the interviews add (albeit contrasting) information about who Vincent (pictured) really was, there’s a lack of a backbone. Where’s the interview with someone from the housing association, explaining how a housing association tenant could have so spectacularly fallen through the cracks? Interviews with people who those who actually worked at the scene? The police (there’s some talk of foul play). And, ok, Morley clearly didn’t want to offend Vincent’s four sisters, after they refused to participate, but why are they untouchable? Why aren’t more questions asked of how four sisters could have let their own sister go unchecked for over 2 years?

This shouldn’t have been a studio-set, punch pulling, at times ‘A Smile is Just a Frown‘, Holly-Wood Green production. It should have been raw, visceral, a no holds study of an individual to whom this happened, and the society which let it happen.

But it’s none of this. Of course, credit to Carol Morley for finding this story, seeing the potential in it, doing something it it. But ultimately, it’s a shame she didn’t hand it over to someone who was able to do something more with it.

Watch the film online here. 

Women’s Day, Reportage from an Unexpected Place – and A To-Do List (before leaving London)

Graham Phillips

For the weekend, I’m looking forward to bringing you special reportage about what Women’s Day means in London, having already been pleased to bring you reportage from the WASPI demo.

In the week, there’s going to be reportage from an unexpected place.

And then, preparing to leave London to return to report in Donbass, via many places, and much reportage across Europe, more, and Russia, there’s a to-do list of things to get to in London prior to departure, so join me as I work through that list.

As ever, all my work is thanks to your support, being completely crowdfunded, independent. If you’d like to be involved in making it all happen – click here.