1.Everyone shall possess the right to freely express and publicise his thoughts in words, images or by any other means, as well as the right to inform others, inform himself and be informed without hindrance or discrimination 2.Exercise of the said rights shall not be hindered or limited by any type or form of censorship Constitution of the Portuguese Republic, Article 37.º

The lackeys of the powerful

by Gonçalo Amaral

Power is something that contains us and transforms us into free persons or mere lackeys, according to our ability to say no or the interest we have in kneeling down. To say that a former policeman cannot write or speak about cases or about the activity that he exercised for years, out of respect for ethics and due behaviour, is to limit that citizen’s rights.

It is identical to saying that a politician cannot write or speak about politics, and, widening the scope, a medic, a lawyer or a journalist would be equally limited by an obscure ethical and behavioural code. That is to say, none of these social classes could express technical and based opinions. We would be in the midst of stupidity and of lackeys. But life and individual rights are not what vassals desire.

We have the right, and mainly the duty, within the exercise of responsible freedom of expression, to speak and to write about anything, even if knowledge that was acquired within the scope of a professional activity is at issue. We do not enter speculation, we write and we will continue, within the use of our freedom of expression, no matter how much it hurts the powerful or their lackeys. Values like the discovery of truth and the performance of justice must continue to shape modern and democratic societies.

source: Correio da Manhã, 05.12.2009


  1. The truth is that when one committs libel and justice shuts you up. That is responsible free speech working for the good.

    So why campaign to fix something that isn't broken?

  2. Well done GA. Do not ever give up.

    As for modntosser, when the going gets tough, the McCanns and their lackeys infiltrate intelligent forums with idiots to try and disrupt them. Just look at what is happening elsewhere in some of the other forums, so..... do not be drawn into arguments with it, just ignore it, hopefully it will go away and crawl back under its stone (which was never unturned).

    Ignore it!

  3. ModNrodent troll is out of bed early this Saturday

  4. ModNrodder why do you insist? it is obvious that in your world freedom in its general sense and particularly freedom of expression are concepts that totally escape your understanding.
    Why are you exactely for? are you worried about the "discovery of the truth"?

  5. Yet again this nutjob , child neglect supporter, pedo supporter comes out of the woodwork, i ask again are you a pedo too modnrodder? and if not are you just a Freemason. Why else would you support the McLying scum.

  6. That agent provocateur attacks again. Like hyenas, he smells blood and attacks when least expected.

    He is truly bothered by the support GA is getting. He doesn't understand that whatever the outcome of this trial, the guilty label hanging on the McCann's heads will no be erased. And that seems to hurt.

  7. Spoken like a true professional. Spot on again, Sr Amaral! Good luck with the fight you face.

  8. Please, for the benefit of good debate can we just ignore disruptors. Thanks. This article by Amaral is so well written we should be discussion that above all else.

  9. Mr Amaral, justice will be done and the truth will be exposed where it belongs: inside a court room. You have asked for nothing more than an opportunity to confront the McCanns in court. I dearly hope that your wish comes true, for the sake of Madeleine, and for the sake of all law-abiding, honest, truthful people of this world.

  10. Força, Gonçalo. Não estás só: somos muitos.

  11. In a democracy the public can make up their own minds about what is just, and campaign against injustice. In this case the public see an injustice, not libel. Snr Amaral knows what justice is and so do the public. Historically it has always been the right of the public to see justice served how ever long it takes. Already there are petitions, websites and vast numbers of people exercised to bring this injustice to an end. And in the end corruption and money will not be a match for the power of the people.

  12. The first and last sentences of this article are priceless. I will never forget them. I think Sr Amaral will be o.k. with or without us supporting him. He will get Justice for Madeleine in the end !

  13. Sr. Amaral's book is the saviour for truth and justice will follow sure as day follows night it is universal law .

  14. Seven of the 13 comments so far are either by the resident troll or about the idiot.
    Wouldn't it be easier to just bar this obvious plant/disruptor Joana?
    I doubt anyone would protest.

  15. Absolutely agreed anonym 14, after all he has more than 20 other blogs and forums where he can express his opinion among people that share his "beliefs" - his comments here are a complete waste of space and time. He doesn't want to debate, he just wants to disrupt.

  16. Great piece of Dr. Amaral again! Thank you for posting that Joana.
    Indeed the promoters of child neglect are very active everywhere this morning. Trying to stop a truth that can not be stopped.

  17. If the McCanns were so concerned about the effect of Dr Amaral's book on their search for Madeleine and on their children, why did they wait until it sold so well and the money accrued before they asked for an injunction.

    That alone, speaks volumes.

  18. Anon 17 - totally agree, they knew when it was first published what it was about. Why not stop it right their in it's tracks.

    And they had the best lawyers then as well.

  19. This is a snippet from the Expresso paper version

    source: Expresso, paper edition, 06.09.2008 (dated last September the McCanns knew then about the book but did nothing about it then).

    article by: Raquel Moleiro and Rui Gustavo

    Q – Your English lawyers already have a translated copy and they are analyzing it. Do you intend to sue Gonçalo Amaral?
    Gerry – At this moment we are focused on what we can do to find Madeleine and not in suing anyone.
    Kate – All that I am going to say about this – because I’m not going to waste any time on Mr Amaral – is that as a professional and as a person his behaviour has been a disgrace.

    Q – Aren’t you curious to know what the book says?
    Kate – What for? It must be nothing but a load of rubbish. It is so secondary… It certainly won’t help to find our daughter. My consolation is that on the cover he calls her Maddie, the name that the media have invented. We never called her anything like that.

    Q – But you do know the theory that Gonçalo Amaral defends: Madeleine accidentally died in the Ocean Club apartment and you concealed the body.
    Gerry – It really is a waste of time. And we need all the time that we can get to analyze the investigation’s documents, which contain a lot of information that we didn’t know about.
    Kate – You just have to cross, loosely, his theory with the process in order to understand that the facts that he reports are not correct.

  20. http://www.thestar.co.za/?fArticleId=4224080

    And hard to believe that as early as July 07 Krugel was searching for Maddie's body with the consent of her parents according to this news report.

    With the consent of her parents, Gerry and Kate McCann, Krugel spent three nights searching for missing Madeleine (4) in July, using the Matter Oriented System (MOS) equipment he has developed

  21. I have followed this case since it first hit the media. Although I read daily I have never posted. Sorry that this is so long. The words that often ring in my ears are those from Mrs. McCann who states "those bloggers who have nothing better to do". And what strikes me about that cold, unkind callous remark is that she does not know me or Joana or the thousands of others who daily check in because they care and have been moved by 'her' daughters plight or as the McCanns so crassly put it 'the situation she finds herself in'. (funny I thought parents were responsible for situations their children were put in.... silly me!!)
    What is amazing to me is that these kind and caring acts of others' are considered by the McCanns as coming from those who 'have nothing better to do and are mean-spiriten by nature'. I am a responsible , balanced mother of three girls with a Masters degree and would likely be described by others' as kind and caring with a keen sense of social and political justice. I would guess many others' seeking truth in this situation fit the same characterstics. I also have many other outlets in my life social, spiritual, educational etc..

    It seems to be Mrs. McCann must be 'confused' and although she doesn't know me it is the 'act of disagreeing that she finds so 'fearful and reprehensible'. As Goncalo Amaral is well aware it is simply the 'truth' that she does infact fear and those who dare to search for it. (Keep up the great work Joana and Goncalo and all others!!)
    I have read all of Goncalo Amaral's articles and for some reason this article reduced me to tears. In it's simplicity and eloquence it speaks of 'truth' .. something that others' in this situation seem to fear and avoid at all legal costs.
    The 'truth' is that when wealthy bullies use their high priced lawyers to impose a restriction on an individual whose resources have been taken away from him ... it then becomes a matter of time before the individual is able to garner his resources and return to 'defend' himself in the legal matter. The 'truth' is that the McCann injunction is temporary and Goncalo Amaral hasn't had his day in court yet... To say at this point that libel has been committed and 'free speech' is working for the good seems a tad premature.... or is that simply a reflection of those who see 'free speech' as only hearing their side...... who does that remind me of?? Everything is ok as long as we tell one side- our side of the story, and don't have to answer any questions and as soon as someone disagrees we'll sue.... hmmmmm.... and although i don't want to be viewed as critical... could somone give the McCanns a crash course on how to hire 'above board' and upstanding private investigators to find their daughter... it seems they are having 'trouble' finding any.... such a shame as it would seem to 'hamper' their search using these 'three -ring', 'criminal' inexpereinced 'money laundering' agency's... but then again having trouble 'finding' important people is not new to them.... I guess suing Metedeo 3 or Halligen is out of the question as they were only paid lavish sums to find Madeline., made outrageous clamis, never checked phone in tips but apparently NONE of these acts hampered their search for Madeline????... better to sue the lead Detective who made an average salary, was never paid by the McCanns BUT who dared to disagree, ask questions and publish a book....It was after all his fault Madeline hasn't been found?? ... Do the McCanns really think anyone still buys this??

  22. Hello Anon 21

    Yes you are right, and if only there was somebody who could confront them face to face to say these things, but they hide behind their spokespeople and their carefully controlled interviews where they can only be asked certain questions.

    They know how to use their powerful friends and the media to make out that anybody who dares challenge their account of what happened to Madeleine are people who should be shunned and ignored.

    Everytime I hear Sr Amaral being called such names as a 'disgraced cop' or whatever else they have, and are still saying, sickens me to the core, when people who know him and have worked with him know him to be a conscientious and honourable man.

    It is the McCanns who are the BAD parents, it is the McCann who are the DANGEROUS parents.

    How do I know this?

    Because they once had a child called Madeleine whose welfare they were responsible for. And now she is no more because they chose to go out and leave her and her siblings alone in an unlocked apartment, not once, but night after night.

    Any blame and negative comments should not be laid at the doorstep of Sr Amaral. He was not the father of Madeleine.

    More's the pity.

    And, McCanns, you have a lot of angry people who want to know just what did happen to that child. They are not going to go away.

    So, why don't you want the case reopened? What is the problem? Is it that you wouldn't be able to control the whole thing, which is what you have been trying to do from the get go and that includes shutting up all oppostion.

  23. So it is fine to call Mdnrodder a 'pedo supporter'??

    Is that the level of debate you must sink to in order to try and silence dissenting views? Shameful!!

  24. Anon at 23

    Bet you know quite a bit about silencing dissent if you are supporting the McCanns.

    No criticism for them from you though.

  25. Anon at 20

    After coming to the conclusion that the McCanns never do anything without there is some ulterior motive behind it, can't help but wonder what on earth all that was about.

    Why would the McCanns get a guy from South Africa to come with a machine that can supposedly find bodies. It all sounds rather whimsical.

    Then they go and dismiss the findings of the dogs whilst apparently believing the man and his machine!!

    Has anybody any idea what was really going on and why they did this?

  26. I actually feel more confident that Mr Amaral may well win this round after the conclusion of the Meredith Kercher trial this week. Amanda Knox's family had used similar tactics, the police are corrupt, the evidence is inconclusive, our lovely blonde , middle class daughter could not possibly be guilty- the Italian system was under extreme scrutiny, especailly from the very vocal Knox supporters, yet the jury did not let that influence them and returned a guilty verdict. Maybe the Portugeuse will look at this and realise that they can stand up to this type of interference. I thought all along that Knox would get off and there would be no justice for Meredith. Now I hope that Mr Amaral will soon be free to speak his mind and that there will soon be justice for Madeleine.

  27. I remember supporting the right to discuss the Madeleine case in the Mirror Forum quite fiercely - but I am not sure this is the same. Amaral mentions 'Values like the discovery of truth and the performance of justice must continue to shape modern and democratic societies' in the same breath as 'freedom of speech' but the two are poles apart. When Police conduct an investigation I think most people would be horrified to see it serialised in a tabloid newspaper. The actual 'pursuit' of truth will always require a certain amount of speculation because speculating and hypothesising are a ncessary part of the Police procedure - but speculation should carry little authority when publishing newspapers or books (especially if it comes served with a smattering of facts - as this only blurs the line between speculation and the faithful and impartial reporting of evidence).

    An inevstiagtion requires the detective to pursue possibilities, query the evidence and produce several lines of enquiry until the truth is finally grasped - but the pursuit itself requires some discretion.

    I don't think anyone could blame Amaral for trying to politicize the case by framing it in a 'demomocracy is being challenged' debate as he will be looking for support from any quarter he can think of - but I think his argument is a little spurious in the context of an open investigation (the file has not been closed).

    When Amaral says he thinks the child was buried on the beach it is pure specualtion. When he says the child must have had a 'sleeping potion' it is similarly speculation and when he tries to say 'Calpol Night' is a sleeping potion he is simply distorting the truth.

    I dare say Amaral has done more harm than good to seeing any kind of justice served on the McCanns. Their lawyers could successfully argue that they would never be allowed a fair trial based on the speculation of Amaral's book and that of the tabloids.

    But perhaps this has been the point all along. There are some very clever monkeys out there who never wanted this investigation to develop - and I am not just thinking of the McCanns. A major investiagtion shelved after just 13-14 months? Not without political weight being applied from both countries it wouldn't.

  28. Alan

    I think you are misunderstanding the differences between the inquisitorial and adversarial methods of the legal systems of Portugal and the UK.

    The McCanns lawyers in Portugal would not be able to argue that the McCanns would not get a fair trial, because the transcript of the Files is there for anybody to read if they so wish and make their own conclusions.

    Sr Amaral, in his book, is taking people along the process of the investigation and does bring in other possibilities that were pursued, yet on the basis of the facts and circumstances the investigators themselves who worked on the case were of the opinion that the McCanns were involved to some extent in what happened to the child.

    If you are wanting Sr Amaral not to speak about this then you should also request that the McCanns not tell people there was an abduction as if this was a fact, when there actually is no evidence whatsoever for this.

    Not only that, but people are being asked to give money over to the McCanns in the belief of this.

    It is to adress such things as this that the book was written.

    It is called free speech and it is a necessity in any democracy.


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