My old friend and colleague, Martin Bell is one of the best-known and most highly regarded British broadcast journalists. As a veteran BBC war correspondent, Bell has covered foreign assignments in more than eighty countries and eleven wars: including the Arab-Israeli wars of 1967, Vietnam, Nigeria, Angola, Zimbabwe, Nicaragua, El Salvador, where I worked with him as his Spanish-speaking news producer, at The Gulf, in Croatia and finally in Bosnia, where millions of TV viewers watched as he was nearly killed by shrapnel.
In 1997, an ambush of a different sort led to another defining moment in his career: He ousted disgraced “cash for questions” MP Neil Hamilton. Martin reversed a Conservative majority of 22,000 to become the first independent candidate to be elected since 1950. During his four years as a Member of British Parliament, he served on the Standards and Privileges Committee. In his time as an Member of Parliament, he is particularly proud of having helped to win compensation for survivors of Japanese POW camps. Martin Bell is also knight, a proud honor allowing him to use the title "Sir"
The UNICEF Ambassador, former broadcast war correspondent and Member of Parliament commands great respect and deep affection from his very diverse audience: Martin is also known for always wearing white and has even had to raise white flags during dangerous shoot outs, which we later laughingly referred to as "bang bang".
Sir Martin Bell is a true British institution. He reports that his white suits will be more than ever in evidence. He tells me that he is accelerating in his old age and is about to launch a book of light and dark verse.
Here's a sample.... ENJOY!