Book: John Simpson «Strange Places, Questionable People»

Strange Places, Questionable People

For over thirty years, John Simpson has travelled the world to report on the most significant events of our time. From being punched in the stomach by Harold Wilson on one of his first days as a reporter, to escaping summary execution in Beirut, flying into Teheran with the returning Ayatollah Khomeini, and narrowly avoiding entrapment by a beautiful Czech secret agent, Simpson has had an astonishingly eventful career. In 1989 he witnessed the Tiananmen Square massacre, the fall of the Berlin Wall and the collapse of Communism throughout Eastern Europe and, only weeks later, in South Africa, the release of Nelson Mandela.

Издательство: "Pan Books" (2008)

Формат: 130x200, 578 стр.

ISBN: 978-0-330-35566-7, 033035566X

Купить за 719.5 руб на Озоне

John Simpson

Infobox journalist
name = John Simpson

caption = Simpson at a book signing in 2006
birthname = John Cody Fidler-Simpson
birth_date = birth date and age|1944|8|9|df=yes
birth_place = Cleveleys, Lancashire, England
occupation = Journalist
spouse = Diane Jean Petteys (1965-1995)
Adele Kruger (1996-present)
ethnic = English
credits = "BBC News"

John Cody Fidler-Simpson CBE (born 9 August 1944) is an English foreign correspondent. He is world affairs editor of BBC News, the world's biggest broadcast news service. [ [ NewsWatch | About BBC News | This is BBC News ] ] One of the most travelled reporters ever, he has spent all his working life at the corporation. He has reported from over 100 countries, including 30 war zones, and has interviewed numerous world leaders.

Early life

Simpson was born in Cleveleys, Lancashire; his family later moved to Dunwich, Suffolk. He reveals in his autobiography that his father was an anarchist. That didn't prevent Simpson from getting a top-notch education: he was sent to Dulwich College Preparatory School and St Paul's, and read English at Magdalene College, Cambridge, where he was editor of "Granta" magazine. In 1965 he was a member of the Magdalene "University Challenge" team. A year later Simpson started as a trainee sub-editor at BBC radio news.


Simpson became a BBC reporter in 1970. He describes in his autobiography how on his very first day the then prime minister Harold Wilson, angered by the sudden and impudent, as he saw it, appearance of the novice's microphone, punched him in the stomach.

Simpson was the BBC's political editor from 1980 till 1981. He presented the "Nine O'Clock News" from 1981 till 1982 and became diplomatic editor in 1982. He had also served as a correspondent in South Africa, Brussels and Dublin. He became BBC world affairs editor in 1988.

Simpson's reporting career includes the following episodes:-
* He travelled back from Paris to Tehran with the exiled Ayatollah Khomeini on 1 February 1979, a return that heralded the Iranian Revolution, as millions lined the streets of the capital.
* In November 1969 he interviewed the exiled King of Buganda, Mutesa II, hours before death in his London flat from alcohol poisoning. Official cause was suicide but some suspected assassination. Simpson told the police the following day that the king, a fellow-graduate of Magdalene College, Cambridge, had been sober and in good spirits, but this line of enquiry was mysteriously not pursued.

*In 1989 he dodged bullets at the Beijing Tiananmen Square massacre.

* Simpson reported the fall of Ceauşescu regime in Bucharest later that year.

* He spent the early part of the 1991 Gulf War in Baghdad, before being expelled by the authorities.

* Simpson reported from Belgrade during the Kosovo War of 1999, where he was one of a handful of journalists to remain in the Serbian capital after the authorities, at the start of the conflict, expelled those from NATO countries.

* Two years later, he was one of the first reporters to enter Kabul in the 2001 US-led invasion of Afghanistan.
* Simpson was hunted by Robert Mugabe's forces in Zimbabwe.

* He was the first BBC journalist to answer questions in a war zone from internet users via BBC News Online.

* While reporting on a non-embedded basis from Northern Iraq in the 2003 Iraq war, Simpson was injured in a so-called friendly fire incident when a U.S. plane bombed the convoy of American and Kurdish forces he was with. The attack was caught on film: a member of Simpson's crew was killed and he himself was left deaf in one ear. cite web
year = 2003
url =
title = 'This is just a scene from hell'
work = BBC
accessmonthday = 6 April
accessyear = 2003

Simpson has freely admitted to experimenting with hallucinogenic drugs offered him by locals in various jungles of the world. This prompted jibes from other panellists when Simpson appeared on BBC Television's topical quiz show "Have I Got News For You". On his first appearance, Simpson revealed that one hallucination involved a six-foot goldfish putting his flipper round his shoulders while wearing dark glasses and a straw hat.

Simpson also presents the occasional current affairs programme "Simpson's World".

Awards etc

Simpson has received numerous awards, including a CBE in the Gulf War honours list in 1991, an International Emmy for his report for the BBC Ten O'Clock News on the fall of Kabul, and three Baftas. He became the first Chancellor of Roehampton University in 2005.

Personal life

Simpson has two daughters, Julia and Eleanor, by his first marriage to Diane Petteys, of El Cajon, California. He married Dee (Adele) Kruger, a South African television producer, in 1996. They had a son, Rafe, in January 2006.cite web
year = 2006
url =
title = Simpson becomes a father aged 61
work = BBC
accessmonthday = 16 January
accessyear = 2006
] Simpson holds British and Irish citizenship; he moved back to London in 2005 after living in Ireland for several years. cite web
year = 2002
url =,,655985,00.html
title = Travels with Auntie
work = The Observer
accessmonthday = 24 February
accessyear = 2002


Simpson has written several books, including the following autobiographical volumes:
* "A Mad World, My Masters" (2000)
* "News From No Man's Land" (2002).
* "The Wars Against Saddam: Taking the Hard Road to Baghdad" (2004)
* "Days from a Different World: A Memoir of Childhood" (2005)
* "Not Quite World's End: A Traveller's Tales" (2007)
* "Twenty Tales From The War Zone" (2007)


External links

* [ Simpson answers questions from fellow-journalists at London's Frontline Club, October 2007.]
* [ BBC article re. "Friendly Fire" incident in which Simpson was wounded and others killed]
* [ BBC Newswatch profile]
* [ When suffering gets personal ]

Источник: John Simpson

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John SimpsonStrange Places, Questionable PeopleFor over thirty years, John Simpson has travelled the world to report on the most significant events of our time. From being punched in the stomach by Harold Wilson on one of his first days as a… — @Pan Books, @(формат: 130x200, 578 стр.) @ @ @ Подробнее...2008
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