Revealed: UK ran cold war dirty tricks campaign to smear Kenya’s first vice-president

Revealed: UK ran cold war dirty tricks campaign to smear Kenya’s first vice-president

British cold war propagandists smeared Kenyan vice-president Oginga Odinga in the 1960s in “black” propaganda operations, newly declassified files reveal. The Foreign Office’s propaganda arm, the Information Research Department (IRD), targeted the Kenyan nationalist in a three-year campaign run by its dirty tricks section, the Special Editorial Unit (SEU). Odinga’s son, Raila Odinga, may be elected president on Tuesday when Kenyans go to the polls. Oginga Odinga was a major figure in the struggle against British colonialism. After independence in 1963, the British identified pro-west president Jomo Kenyatta as their preferred leader. Vice-president Odinga was leftwing and open to relations with the communist bloc. Concerned that Odinga might replace Kenyatta, constitutionally or otherwise, the British tried to undermine him. Although, as British diplomats recognised, Odinga was not a communist, according …
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