The Sun demonstrated the power of the press this week with a triple campaign victory. The tabloid called for £15-a-week extra for British troops enduring 140F heat in Iraq, asked readers to help pay for 50 Second World War veterans to return to an Italian battlefield and called for the sacking of a “butcher” surgeon.
On Saturday it celebrated success on all three counts on the front page.
Associate editor (news) Paul Field said: “The Sun is in a unique position of having the largest circulation of any daily paper. We are the paper that the establishment and those in the corridors of power look at first in the morning.
“From that position of strength we know we can make a difference.”
He said that as the forces’ paper the Ministry of Defence tended to listen to The Sun and that it changed the policy over heat payments within days of a Sun story headlined “How hot does it have to be?”.
Sun readers and lottery winners Ernie and Barbara Ray came up with the £12,000 needed to send the veterans to Italy. The story came about after the veterans were turned down by the National Lottery.
Andrew Gbingie was sacked from his job at a maternity unit after The Sun published complaints from women who said he had bungled operations. The Sun Ban the Butcher campaign encouraged 24 women to come forward with horror stories.