Spotted in The Observer’s Media Diary:
They’re calling them “Sir Tony’s Black and Tans” – a group of freelance journalists on standby for Ireland should NUJ memebers at Sir Tony’s Independent vote to strike on Budget Day in protest at job cuts. Named after the Auxiliaries Britain sent to quell rebellion in Ireland in the 1920s, staff at the Belfast Telegraph – Sir Tone’s cash-cow – claim the freelances will be parachuted in to a strike-breaking centre in Armagh if industrial action takes place. Dummy copies have been produced and the plan, of course, is to ensure the paper gets out. Wapping all over again.