Gagging Sir David

Ivan Rogers, the principal private secretary to British Prime Minister Tony Blair, "tried to muzzle the Government's top scientific adviser after he warned that global warming was a more serious threat than international terrorism," report Steve Connor and Andrew Grice. In a leaked memo, Rogers ordered Sir David King - a scientist at Cambridge University - to decline any interview requests from British and American newspapers and BBC Radio. The memo and other documents related to the controversy came to light after Sir David's personal press secretary, Lucy Brunt-Jenner, inadvertently left a computer disk in the press room at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in Seattle, where Sir David gave a lecture. "The disk was lying on the top of a computer in the press room and I popped it into the machine to see what was on it," said freelance journalist, Mike Martin. Documents on the disk included scripted answers from Rogers, instructing the scientist how to answer a list of 136 questions that reporters might ask him.